Chino Moreno of Deftones Knows What Song They’re Playing in Heaven

Photo by Travis Schneider.

This is SOUND ADVICE, a weekly destination for playlists curated by Interview’s friends, enemies, and lovers. Over the last few weeks, we’ve gathered playlists curated by ANOHNI, Channel Tres, and the LES icon Patia Borja. This week, we’re feeling nostalgic. Hailing from Sacramento, Chino Moreno—along with his bandmates Stephen Carpenter, Abe Cunningham, and Frank Delgado—rose to fame as Deftones in the late 90s and early 2000s thanks to their provocative and cutting-edge take on rock and alternative music (not to mention their nonchalant it boy factor, which continues to resonate with Gen Zers today, who weren’t even born when Deftones hit the scene). It should come as no surprise, then, that the band created a capsule collection with Heaven by Marc Jacobs in honor of their pivotal album White Pony as a nod to their hardcore fan base. Earlier this month, the band performed in Brooklyn, and an exhibit of original artwork and Deftones memorabilia is on display now at Heaven’s Fairfax store. For this week’s SOUND ADVICE, we asked Moreno, the cult favorite band’s lead vocalist and lyricist, to curate a playlist for us. While he was at it, Moreno took our questionnaire, revealing his first-ever concert, the influence of Kraftwerk on his music, and his favorite song about L.A.


What’s your favorite album cover of all time? Yaz, Upstairs at Eric’s. I would just stare and get lost in this cover art while listening as a teen. The album remains brilliant.

Do you play an instrument? I fool around on the guitar and piano.

What song reminds you of your childhood? “Natural High” by Bloodstone. My parents always had music playing in the house, especially on the weekends. This tune reminds me of Saturday mornings in the 70’s.

What album is the soundtrack to your life? “Roped In” by North Americans. Well, my current life.

Who’s the most obscure song/artist you love? Anti Quant.

Who most inspired your music taste? Kraftwerk. Most shit I love stems from them.

What was your first concert? Depeche Mode (Violator Tour).

What song from White Pony do you think deserves more recognition? “Street Carp.” I snuck my address into the lyrics and no one emailed me.

What’s the Deftones’ fan-favorite song? “Summer.”

Do you miss the 90s music scene? So many different scenes. Some. Some, not so much.

Why do you think people are obsessed with the early 2000s right now? All things shall pass. Then come back every couple of decades. Seems to be the cycle of things.

What’s your favorite song about L.A.? “Chinatown Style” by HTRK.

How does it feel to have an exhibit dedicated to your band in L.A.? Great. Was a trip going through old bins of stuff I’ve saved over the decades. Finding the very first Deftones shirt that was ever produced (silk-screened and hand baked in Chi’s oven) was neat.

What’s your favorite piece from the collab with Heaven? Pin mesh tee and White Pony sweater are two of my standouts.

What music are they playing in Heaven? “Heaven” by I monster.