The Deftones' Low-Hype Success

Back in music news, you may not have heard of the Deftones yet, but hey, they haven't heard of you either, so settle down. The band's not much on hype, and it isn't what you'd call top of the pops, but the group nevertheless cracked the "Billboard" top 30 recently with its latest album, "Around The Fur" ["My Own Summer (Shove It)" video clip, 500k QuickTime] How'd they do that?

CHINO MORENO, Vocals: We could very easily write songs, to whatever (snaps his finger) you want to do. I can't see myself doing it. (Looks at Abe) Do I smell?

ABE CUNNINGHAM, Drums: Nah, I just wanted to see how you are doing.

MTV: The Deftones are far from your radio friendly pop band. In fact, to sing along with the nearly indecipherable vocals of lead singer Chino Moreno, even the truest of fans would need a lyric sheet.

STEPHEN CARPENTER, Guitar: I like it that people gotta dig into our music and find out something, 'cause

you know, those are the people that are gonna be the true fans. They are gonna be there 'cause they love the music. When they come to the show, they are gonna be the ones singing all the lyrics back, you know? And you can tell they're feeling it, and you're feeling it 'cause they got into it.

MTV: Apparently, Deftones fans are so into the band that over 30 fan-generated websites exist on the Internet. That's more sites than The Spice Girls and Puff Daddy combined.

MORENO: I think it may have to do with... because they don't really see it anywhere else, you know what I'm sayin'? It's almost like something special to them, too. It's one of those "my own band" kind of things that you don't hear about everywhere else.

MTV: The band's dynamic sound has drawn comparisons to heavy acts like the Bad Brains, Rage Against The Machine, and Korn; yet some of the band's major influences may come as a surprise.

MORENO: The new wave influence to me was bands like

The Cure, Depeche Mode, and stuff that blew my mind when I was young. Those are people who taught me how to sing. I actually met Robert Smith the other day and I actually told him that. And he was like "huh?" He just watched us play and he said "Hmmm..." like he didn't hear it.

MTV: Well, what may be more agreed upon is the Deftones reputation for putting on an energetic show. The band expects aggression, but not a riot.

MORENO: There have been a couple times when people have come up to me and said I love going to your shows 'cause it makes me wanna kick a**, and I'm just like, hold on a minute that's not what I want to do... So it is a hard thing to weigh out...

CARPENTER: Can't we all just get along?

The band plays Minneapolis on Tuesday.