They signed to Madonna's Maverick Records in 1994 and released their debut album, Adrenaline, the following year. The album sold well, and earned mostly positive reviews. "Bored" and "7 Words" were minor hits. Delgado was not yet an official member, but he performed on several songs.
One review of Adrenaline noted Cunningham's "surprisingly sophisticated drumming" and wrote that "Unlike many of their contemporaries, the Deftones are very controlled even in the midst of chaos."
About this time, Deftones stopped touring and collaborating with bands like KoЯn. This was due in part to the fact that Deftones were often lumped into the then-emerging genre sometimes dubbed nu-metal. Like many bands so categorized, Deftones disagreed with the classification. Though Deftones were only tangentially associated with nu-metal, they feared the increasingly negative use of the term and separated themselves from other such groups, both professionally and aesthetically.
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