SYSTEM OF A DOWN
Alternative Metal • United States

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System of a Down (commonly referred to as System or abbreviated as SOAD) is an American alternative metal band, formed in 1994 from Los Angeles, California. All four members are of Armenian descent, and are widely known for their outspoken radical views expressed in many of their songs confronting the Armenian Genocide of 1915 by the Ottoman Empire and the ongoing War on Terror by the US government. The band consists of Serj Tankian (vocals), Daron Malakian (vocals, guitar), Shavo Odadjian (bass, vocals) and John Dolmayan (drums). System of a Down has achieved commercial success with five albums, and many singles such as their breakout hit "Chop Suey!", "Toxicity", "Aerials", "B.Y.O.B.", "Question!", "Hypnotize", and "Lonely Day". Their works have earned them one Grammy Award amongst three nominations.

System of a Down went on hiatus in 2006, with Serj Tankian pursuing a solo career and Daron Malakian and John Dolmayan forming
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ToxicityToxicity
Sony Legacy 2001
Audio CD$5.97
$1.48 (used)
HypnotizeHypnotize
Explicit Lyrics
Sony Legacy 2005
Audio CD$5.43
$2.97 (used)
MezmerizeMezmerize
Explicit Lyrics
American / Columbia 2005
Audio CD$5.47
$2.28 (used)
Steal This Album!Steal This Album!
Explicit Lyrics
Sony Legacy 2002
Audio CD$5.00
$2.87 (used)
System of a DownSystem of a Down
Box set · Explicit Lyrics · Import
Sony Music Canada Inc. 2011
Audio CD$19.13
$22.34 (used)
System Of A DownSystem Of A Down
Explicit Lyrics
Sony Legacy 1998
Audio CD$2.98
$1.49 (used)
Rock Pack - System Of A Down / Steal This Album!Rock Pack - System Of A Down / Steal This Album!
Explicit Lyrics · Import
Sony Music Canada Inc. 2010
Audio CD$8.06
$7.59 (used)
AerialsAerials
Single
Audio CD$169.98
$6.98 (used)
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SYSTEM OF A DOWN Discography

SYSTEM OF A DOWN albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 3.97 | 50 ratings
System of a Down
Alternative Metal 1998
.. Album Cover 4.17 | 90 ratings
Toxicity
Alternative Metal 2001
.. Album Cover 3.46 | 31 ratings
Steal This Album!
Alternative Metal 2002
.. Album Cover 4.16 | 56 ratings
Mezmerize
Alternative Metal 2005
.. Album Cover 3.61 | 39 ratings
Hypnotize
Alternative Metal 2005

SYSTEM OF A DOWN EPs & splits

.. Album Cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Sugar E.P.
Alternative Metal 1998

SYSTEM OF A DOWN live albums

SYSTEM OF A DOWN demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
1995 Demo Tape
Alternative Metal 1995
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Demo Tape 1
Alternative Metal 1995
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Demo Tape 2
Alternative Metal 1996
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Demo Tape 3
Alternative Metal 1996

SYSTEM OF A DOWN re-issues & compilations

SYSTEM OF A DOWN singles (6)

.. Album Cover
4.25 | 2 ratings
Toxicity
Alternative Metal 2001
.. Album Cover
3.75 | 2 ratings
Chop Suey!
Alternative Metal 2001
.. Album Cover
4.25 | 2 ratings
Aerials
Alternative Metal 2002
.. Album Cover
4.00 | 2 ratings
B.Y.O.B.
Alternative Metal 2005
.. Album Cover
3.98 | 2 ratings
Question!
Alternative Metal 2005
.. Album Cover
4.48 | 2 ratings
Lonely Day
Alternative Metal 2006

SYSTEM OF A DOWN movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Psycho Messiahs
Alternative Metal 2002

SYSTEM OF A DOWN Reviews

SYSTEM OF A DOWN System of a Down

Album · 1998 · Alternative Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
martindavey87
It's 1998, and with nu metal slowly getting its footing and revitalizing what was, at that point, a dying metal scene, there's no denying that amongst the rap metal hybrid acts such as Limp Bizkit and Rage Against the Machine, and the teenage angst ridden beats of Papa Roach and Korn, there was one band who had a unique sound of their own, and that band was Spineshank.

Just kidding.

System of a Down's self-titled debut album is literally all over the place, from calm to erratic in a heartbeat. It's raw and aggressive, yet at times can be soothing and melodic, whilst maintaining a take-no-prisoners "fuck the world" attitude. It's dirty, gritty, and full of rage and spite. Certainly not a record for the weak-hearted.

Vocalist Serj Tankian has expertly managed to blend all kinds of singing, from melodic clean vocals to shouting, a wide range of eccentric falsetto, something considerably theatrical, and what can only be described as "vocal effects", it could be seen as an acquired taste, but it's certainly unique! And his vocals are perfectly backed by Daron Malakian's guitars. Punchy, heavy and relentless. Frantically shifting from crunchy riffs to odd, out-of-tune bends and licks. It's a recognizable style that very few have been able to replicate.

Highlights to look out for include 'Suite-Pee', 'Know', 'Ddevil' (nope, that wasn't a typo!), 'Peephole' and of course the classic, 'Sugar'.

As a whole, this is a cracking debut. It shows a band with incredible chemistry and potential (which they would certainly live up to), and the only real problem with it today is that it seems a bit dated and overshadowed by what the band would go on to release later in their careers.

SYSTEM OF A DOWN Toxicity

Album · 2001 · Alternative Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Warthur
Wildly experimental, like Primus doing a take on extreme metal at points with lyrics in the vein of a much more direct and heavy-handed Rage Against the Machine, System of a Down's Toxicity in principle is a wildly diverse calvacade of styles but in practice is a bit of a mess. It had the bad luck to come out a mere week before 9/11, which meant that a bunch of fresh political concerns couldn't be addressed on it, but otherwise I guess it is a decent enough snapshot of its time lyrically speaking, but it's a little too often weird for weird's sake. (In particular, the Primus-isms they sometimes indulge in manage to be more irritating than actual Primus.)

SYSTEM OF A DOWN Toxicity

Album · 2001 · Alternative Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
siLLy puPPy
After a promising debut all comes together in a magnificent way for SYSTEM OF A DOWN on TOXICITY. This is a landmark of metal of sort as nothing in all of metal or music at large sounds like it. Although the band itself refers to their unique hybrid of musical styles modestly as pop music, they have in fact developed a unique sonicscape residing on the alternative branch of metal previously getting lumped in with all those rap rock groups that were popular around the same time. It's not really farfetched since the lyrics are often half rapped and half sung. SOAD were just far more sophisticated in their compositions and creativity than many of their contemporaries.

This album delivers a vitriolic bite as it vituperates the power structure and its long list of injustices while keeping the listener engaged with clever and genre bending twists and turns that take the listener from soft melodic acoustic passages to hard repetitious thrash riffing in an instant. Serj Tankian is a master of alternating everything from melodic harmonies to death metal growls and back again without the slightest stumble. The guitar, bass and drums are tight but playful as well. They weave a musical tapestry that incorporate the harmonies of the individual players and then play together in unison in an instant often offering faint dissonance for contrast all sewn together with a nerdy prog charm and even show their sense of humor with the thrash pogo stick party on “Bounce.”

This is one of those rare albums that seems to have mass popular appeal as it is brutal enough to please extreme metalheads, melodic enough for the traditional crowd and unique enough to fulfill its inclusion into the alternative world. It debuted at #1 on Billboard's album charts and has sold a gazillion copies. Phenomenal album that I personally never tire of hearing. Five Hollywood Stars for this toxic concoction of inflamed fusion that only SOAD could deliver.

SYSTEM OF A DOWN System of a Down

Album · 1998 · Alternative Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
siLLy puPPy
The game of musical Monopoly was still the scene in the 90s. SYSTEM OF A DOWN picked up a chance card and got to advance to go and collect their $200. That meaning they got to side-step the traditional climb to musical success by going from playing the LA clubs to recording their first album after Rick Rubin caught a show and offered to produce it for them which granted them instant access to MTV, radio and soon thereafter a stint with Ozzfest. A true story of rags to riches all in a relatively short time.

Undoubtedly they got so much attention because of the strange hybrid they exhibited from the beginning with a kind of alternative metal that at times utilized thrash, at times elements of death metal but all mixed with the traditional music of their Armenian roots. That coupled with their ability to weave complex musical ideas out of rather simple catchy riffs and drumbeats meant they had the perfect background to expound their political views on issues such as the Armenian genocide of 1915 by the Ottomans and the more recent War On Terror by the US.

A lot of the music here is very melodic metal oriented with groove and thrash leanings which drop in and out with strange little lead breaks and Serj Tankian's unusual half screamed, half rapped lyrical outbursts and lots of other unorthodoxies. A very strong album but doesn't quite have the diversity of the following ones. I find this album very good, but not great. The ideas they present here are interesting to say the least but don't really develop fully until their next album TOXICITY. As much as I love listening to this album it does seem to drag a bit towards the end, however still a strong debut for a band whose unique yet accessible experimental take on metal would take the world by storm.

SYSTEM OF A DOWN System of a Down

Album · 1998 · Alternative Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
alice-in-chains4lyfe
Nu metal (or Alternative metal) has always been a controversial genre amongst old school Metalheads who label it "false metal" and "mallcore", and while i must admit Nu metal does have it's fair share of garbage (Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park, Papa Roach etc.), Prog-rock influenced Nu metal bands like System of a Down and Deftones show that not all music from the Nu metal ghetto is crap. The Los Angeles Based System of a Down's self titled debut album is literally like a steaming kettle of molten lava, and alternates between soft moments which showcase lead singer Serj Tankian's fantastic singing ability, to bursts of thrash metal/hardcore punk fury typified by tracks like Sugar, Suite-Pee, Soil and Mind. At first i didn't care much for the ballady songs on this album (Spiders, Suggestions, Peephole) but they eventually grew on me (once again due to tankian's amazing voice). The album includes a few filler type songs which are at or under 2 minutes (CUBErt, Darts, DDevil), They are basically mini versions of the longer heavier songs (Mind, Soil) which is pretty cool. I don't particularly care for CUBErt which i could never really get into, but other then that the tracks here are of great quality and very memorable, the type of stuff that will stay in your head for a while. Overall a fantastic Nu/Alt metal album, and definitely one of my most favorite debut albums ever. Recommended for fans of bands like Slayer, Metallica, Korn and Tool.

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