Korn's 1998 harvest is more bountiful than anyone could have expected, and younger metal/punk/rap hybrid acts like the Deftones are reaping the benefits. Not that the Sacramento quartet hasn't been working hard on its own account. Road stints with Bad Brains, White Zombie and, yes, Korn -- not to mention a spot on the Vans Warped tour -- have afforded them plenty of chances to reach a fairly simple conclusion: There is life beyond the kiddie-skate-rat contingent. It seems even the fresh-scrubbed youth audience is finding solace within the Deftones' incensed vocals and pounding, staccato beats -- a sound informed as much by industrial as it is by hiphop.
Giving 14-year-olds something to bounce off the walls to is harder than it looks, as most teens have serious bullshit detectors, and they insist on authenticity. Perhaps what makes the Deftones so good at what they do is their ability to stay real as they burn off energy like a space pod going through atmospheric reentry. It may not seem like much -- appealing to punkers, metal heads and Extreme Sports addicts. But think of the purchasing power involved here, which goes a long way in explaining why the Deftones have sponsorships deals with Converse and Adidas.
Sure, in a sense, the Deftones are turning rebellion into cash, sticking it to corporate America as the multicultural poster boys for a new American Dream fraught with alienation and anger. But, hey, being an adolescent is tough, and nobody understands that better than the Deftones. And apparently, they are a comfort to many: Their latest release, Around the Fur, is approaching 500,000 served. That's a lot of lawns mowed.
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The Deftones perform Tuesday, November 10, at the International Ballroom, 14035 South Main. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $18.50. Quicksand opens. 629-3700.
Lil' KeKe and the Herschelwood Hardheadz -- Snoop has his Dogg Pound; Busta Rhymes has his Flipmode Squad. So who's to say a local homeboy can't have his own spin-off clique? Reality rapper Lil' KeKe, the unofficial mayor of Houston's southside, is using his regional popularity to spotlight his neighborhood raw dogs, the Herschelwood Hardheadz. With their debut album, A Million Dollars Later, already in stores, the Hardheadz are pushing themselves as a posse with their own voice and attitude. But they can make it on their own? The odds aren't good. After all, when was the last time you heard anything from Biggie's Junior M.A.F.I.A.? With Bounty Killer and the Ruff Kutt Band on Friday, November 6, at the Royal Hall, 11933 Bissonnet. Showtime 10 p.m. Tickets $20. 270-6624. (Craig D. Lindsey)
Steven Fromholz -- A spare but full-bodied rendition of Steven Fromholz's sprawling regional classic, "Texas Trilogy," kicks off the second disc of Step Inside This House, Lyle Lovett's loving tribute to his Lone Star influences. And despite stiff competition from the likes of Townes Van Zandt, Vince Bell and Guy Clark, the three-movement suite may well be the most majestic moment on an album full of them -- just as the Lovett version of Fromholz's "Bears" is the collection's most playful diversion. The real item is also a study in contrasts: aside from his work as singer/songwriter, the longtime Austinite is part-time actor and a rafting guide. As is the case for anyone who's lived a little, the years haven't always been easy on Fromholz, and the hard mileage can show on-stage. But, in the end, if the songs -- and the stories that accompany them -- are all he has to fall back on, then fair enough. They're timeless. On Friday and Saturday, November 6 and 7, at Anderson Fair, 2007 Grant. Tickets $8. 528-8576. (Hobart Rowland)