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System of a Down

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Like many late-'90s metal bands, System of a Down struck a balance between '80s underground thrash metal and metallic early-'90s alternative rockers like Jane's Addiction. Their dark, neo-gothic alternative metal earned a cult following in the wake of the popularity of such like-minded bands as Korn and the Deftones. Vocalist Serj Tankian, guitarist Daron Malakian, bassist Shavo Odadjian, and drummer John Dolmayan formed System of a Down in Southern California in the mid-'90s. They quickly earned a strong following in Los Angeles, largely based on strong word of mouth. A three-song demo began circulating through metal collectors, and their fan base soon spread throughout not only America, but Europe and New Zealand. By the end of 1997 the group had signed to American, then distributed by Columbia Records. American/Columbia released the group's eponymous debut album in the summer of 1998, securing the band opening spots on the Slayer and Ozzfest tours. System eventually went gold, and set up the September 2001 release of the even more ambitious Toxicity. System's second effort was another heavy music triumph, shaming the majority of their nu-metal competition and running away with multi-platinum honors. The quartet didn't slow down. Malakian started the eatURmusic imprint and Tankian a label called Serjical Strike; Tankian also collaborated with Armenian avant-garde folk musician Arto Tuncboyaciyan in a project called Serart. In November 2002 System issued the bare-bones but no less powerful odds 'n' ends set Steal This Album!; they also remained politically active. By 2004, System of a Down was back in the studio with Rick Rubin. The bold result of those sessions was a single epic album released in two parts. Mezmerize/Hypnotize kept System's furious creativity alive, incorporating the wild vocal melodies, lyrical passion, and rabid structural shifts that had become their trademark. Mezmerize, or part one, appeared in May 2005, while Hypnotize, its final section, appeared later in the year, and both hit the top of the album charts. The following year saw the group go on hiatus, with Malakian forming Scars on Broadway; Dolmayan opening an online comic book store and forming the group Indicator (he also briefly played with Scars on Broadway); Odadjian working with RZA, AcHoZeN, and George Clinton; and Tankian embarking on a solo career. In 2010 the bandmembers announced that they would be reuniting for a series of European festival dates in 2011. System of a Down continued to tour internationally through 2015, and hinted at the possibility of releasing a new album in the near future. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Albums by
System of a Down

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    12 songs

    On Air

    Hypnotize

    11 songs

    On Air

    Mezmerize

    16 songs

    On Air

    Steal This Album!

    15 songs

    On Air

    Toxicity

    15 songs

    On Air

    Toxicity

    17 songs

    On Air

    System of a Down [Limited Edition]

    2 songs

    On Air

    B.Y.O.B. single (with bonus)

    1 song

    On Air

    B.Y.O.B.

    10 songs

    On Air

    Pledge of Allegiance Tour: Live Concert Recording

    13 songs

    On Air

    System of a Down

    5 songs

    On Air

    Vicinity Of Obscenity/Lonely Day

    2 songs

    On Air

    Hypnotize, Pt. 1

    2 songs

    On Air

    B.Y.O.B.

    4 songs

    On Air

    Chop Suey [Canada CD]

    15 songs

    On Air

    System of a Down

    14 songs

    On Air

    Toxicity

    14 songs

    On Air

    Toxicity [Australian Bonus DVD]

    6 songs

    On Air

    Lonely Day [EP]

    4 songs

    On Air

    Question [UK CD #2]

    7 songs

    On Air

    Sugar [EP]


Top Songs by
System of a Down

  1.   Song
    Popularity
  2.   Toxicity
  3.   Chop Suey!
  4.   Aerials
  5.   B.Y.O.B.
  6.   Hypnotize
  7.   Lonely Day
  8.   Cigaro
  9.   Sugar
  10.   Spiders
  11.   Prison Song
  12.   Suite-Pee
  13.   Bounce
  14.   Forest
  15.   Innervision
  16.   Question!
  17.   Deer Dance
  18.   War?
  19.   Old School Hollywood
  20.   Darts
  21.   Stealing Society
  22.   Tentative
  23.   Science
  24.   Sad Statue
  25.   Kill Rock 'N Roll
  26. See All Songs

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