Deftones singer Chino Moreno is well-known for his wide-ranging musical taste, so of course when curating the band's second-annual Dias de los Deftones festival, he threw a couple wild cards into the lineup mix. One of those acts was Scottish synthpop trio Chvrches, and for a new cover story, Kerrang! asked the group's vocalist Lauren Mayberry to sit down for a joint interview with Moreno. A big theme that emerged from the convo is the two singers' shared feeling of being outsiders and their embrace of that status and of defying easy categorization.
"That was what excited me when I found your music," Mayberry said to Moreno of Deftones. "It had these two strains in it. It could appeal to people in that [metal] vein, but also to people outside of it, with different sensibilities. I learned to care about genre when I was a teenager. People would say, 'You can't listen to that.' And you'd think, 'I didn't know! No one told me!' I'm glad I found my way out of that, because I feel a sense of identity and community is important at that age, but it's a sad way to live."
Moreno agreed and said people shouldn't be boxing themselves into one corner, "especially at that age when there's so much stuff to explore," he said. "If you just follow one thing for too long you're not letting yourself experience it. In every genre there's good and bad. In any genre these days I could find something interesting — even in country music."
The two discussed the idea of "fitting in" in relation to how acts like Deftones and Chvrches get booked on larger festivals. Since the latter are still relative newcomers (they formed in 2011) when compared to Deftones, Moreno gave great context for how a rule-breaking attitude when it comes to genre can actually be helpful in the long run.
"We never fit into the metal world," he said. "We could play shows with them, but we were never ... whatever. I always thought it was kinda cool that we could dip and go into anything and make it work. That's added to our longevity as a band too, because we were never so one thing."
Below, see Chino Moreno break down Deftones' songwriting process and discuss how conflict can be constructive: