SYSTEM OF A DOWN bassist Shavo Odadjian has told Consequence Of Sound in a new interview that he believes the band will eventually get together record a follow-up to its “Mezmerize” and “Hypnotize” albums, which came out in 2005. “I think so,” he said. “I think we can. Nothing between us has happened that’s so terrible that people can’t get in the studio and work. Nothing! Everything is just [a matter of] taste, and they just gotta get in and forget the past, and kind of move forward. And I think that will happen. I’m not worried. I’m not worried at all.”
This past summer, guitarist Daron Malakian accused singer Serj Tankian in an interview of not wanting to record, with Tankian responding that creative and financial issues with Malakian led to the stalemate. In a message on Facebook, Tankian wrote that Malakian wanted to control SYSTEM‘s creative process, take more of the publishing money and be the only band member to speak to the press. Tankian remarked: “As we couldn’t see eye to eye on all these points, we decided to put aside the idea of a record altogether for the time being.”
Odadjian told Consequence Of Sound that disagreements between Malakian and Tankian over the SOAD songwriting process have been brewing for a decade.
“Everything that you heard over the summer, that they kind of brought into public, was stuff that was in the past,” he said. “That stuff happened a long time ago. So, it’s like, 10 years later, something new came up, but it wasn’t really new. It was something that was really old, and they were just hashing it out. Because one person did an interview, and I guess in the interview they paraphrased his words and it came off wrong. And I read that, too, and it wasn’t like him. He wouldn’t blame anyone.
“I spoke with Daron, and he was, like, ‘Dude, I didn’t say those things. I said it this way.’ Anyway, that kind of made someone else [Serj] think something, and then that person had to tell their point of view. It was just point of views.
“We’re not even fighting,” he insisted. “When we see each other, we’re so happy and we’re cool. It’s weird that we don’t have a new record, or many records, and it’s weird that we don’t go on world tours. We tour, but it’s so little.”
SYSTEM OF A DOWN drummer John Dolmayan revealed in a 2016 interview that the group had written music for more than a dozen new songs, but those remain in limbo.
“Between you and me and this world, and to the people who read this interview, we have material that tops everything we’ve done,” Shavo told Consequence Of Sound. “And that’s me telling you, honestly. I can’t wait to record that and drop it.
“It’s just a matter of time,” he added. “I just hope it happens sooner than later. But we’ve written stuff together. Daron‘s brought a lot of stuff in. I’ve brought stuff to Daron and we’ve worked it out. I have so much more stuff that is ready to go out. I’ve told Daron this, too. I’ve said, ‘We’ve gotta get this done,’ and he’s, like, ‘Yeah, I’d love to.’ So, we all want to, and I think Serj is kind of doing his own thing, and I get it.”
Tankian told Forbes that the creative process has to “be organic” and “feel right in every way,” adding, “There’s no law that says a band should be together for a million years and have a million records. Actually, if you look over the years as a musicologist or a fan of music would, in any way, it’s probably regressive thinking.”
Tankian has toured with SYSTEM OF A DOWN over the past few years but has concentrated on solo work, soundtracks and other musical projects. Malakian, meanwhile, issued a new album in July called “Dictator” from his recently revived side project, SCARS ON BROADWAY.
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