Crosses EP Review – featuring Chino Moreno of Deftones and Shaun Lopez of Far
By: A. Estes
When longtime friends and neighbors Chino Moreno and Shaun Lopez announced their joint pet project earlier this year, no one could have expected it to have come to fruition as quickly as it has. The debut EP from Crosses, featuring the aforementioned Deftones frontman and Far guitarist, has all the urgency you would expect from such a seemingly spontaneous collaboration and yet all the focus and professionalism you have come to expect of the duo.
Lopez, who has spent as much of his career slinging the axe for post-hardcore heroes Far as he has producing and fronting his own band, The Revolution Smile, truly comes into his own on this self-titled EP. If this effort doesn’t earn the man some high profile production jobs then all is not right in this world. The sounds on this EP are other-worldly, drawing comparisons to everyone from Portishead and Depeche Mode to, yes, the Deftones. Moreno’s voice is perfectly suited for this kind of music, as has been proven time and time again since the Deftones’ 2000 album, "White Pony," and in a way, this is the next lateral move from his other side project, Team Sleep. Each of the five cuts on this EP are layered in keyboards, programmed drums (live drums are also handled by Far drummer Chris Robyn), fuzzy guitars and deep bass-lines (listen for Duff McKagan on the album’s opening track), creating a dense atmosphere that pays tribute to the band’s obvious influences while crafting a unique and exuberant sound which they can truly call their own. It’s not all tweaking and tinkering around though, as Moreno brings out the pop-hooks in songs like "Bermuda Locket," proving Crosses to be an effort that is as experimental as it is accessible.
Fans of Lopez and especially Moreno should immediately stand up and take notice, as Crosses delivers the goods tenfold. This little EP is an unexpected yet wholly enticing treat. It’s also the first in what is promised to be a series of releases, so think of this as an appetizer of what is to come. If these five tracks are any indication, then the follow-ups should be out-of-this-world goodness. Scoop this one up, put it on a constant loop and enjoy. And then head over to their official site for more.