‘Back to School (Mini Maggit)’ by Deftones
From the album White Pony (2000)
A few days ago the internet told me that it is fifteen years since the release of Deftones’ mighty White Pony, a masterclass in genre-bending, mixing nu-metal with experimental rock and trip hop to form a stunning work of art. I mentioned to a group of friends that the 20th June marked fifteen years since the album’s release and the most poignant response I got was ‘fuck’.
Seeing the video for this song for the first time in about thirteen years brought back memories of going back to my (now sadly departed) Nan and Grandad’s house after school (see the link?!) and watching Kerrang! on which this song would be repeated several times in the two hour period between me arriving at my grandparents’ house and heading home with my mother for another night of diligently doing my homework and wishing that Chino Moreno would skateboard through my school and cause utter chaos. This sort of nu metal/rap-rock crossover mixed with slightly more experimental sounds opened my eyes to a lot of what music could do and ‘Back to School’ was one of the first songs that really hit me in this way as an impressionable 11-year-old kid. Fuck indeed.
Of course, ‘Back to School’ was not on the original pressing of White Pony, nor did it feature on the reissue. The band have stated that the song (a reworking of original album closer ‘Pink Maggit’) was a record label pleaser, designed to get them air play and shift units comparative to Linkin Park and Papa Roach. I’m cool with that. The reason I wrote this article on this song and not something like ‘Knife Prty’, ‘Feiticeira’ or the brilliant Maynard James Keenan collab ‘Passenger’ is that this song is, first of all, great, and it brings back the memories I describe above, and that’s what this project is about – songs that have a meaning to me and sharing that meaning with you guys. It’s my blog and I’ll cry if I want to.