Sunday, May 14, 2006

Some Musical Indulgences

On to things that concern my specific interests in music, System of a Down brought out their double albums Mezmerize and Hypnotize towards the end of last year and in the process - though I hate to say this - emulated The Beatles by having two albums debut the top of the charts in the same year. But having heard just their B.Y.O.B single from Mezmerize which (inspite of their critical appeal) I cannot digest purely on musical value, the first two singles of Hypnotize released by SOAD at the end of 2005 and at beginning of 2006, are brilliant to say the least.

I have never doubted Serj Tankian's versatility in his vocals and the brilliance of Malakian's music that we get to hear in most parts of their sophomore 'Toxicity' album, and in spurts in their debut album. But SOAD has largely been about the 'message' they intend to convey through their music, though at times controversial. Their tendency, at times to go all out crazy with their strange brand of creativity in their music might have found detractors (I could be one of them if you take out certain isolated tracks) though, way too little if you compare them with their fan base. However with Hypnotize and Lonely Day, their two singles, they have reaffirmed my faith in the explosive potential of their music, something I felt when I heard Spiders and Aerials. They are great musicians and it is little wonder when one knows that they intentionally screw up the tunes of their songs for desired effect - an effect they probably feel is right for the mood of a particular song. Even though I do not perfectly agree with that screwing up part, I will reserve it for a future session on discussing musical moods in general.

Getting back to the tracks, both of them are totally 'sane' in terms of melody (there are only two words to describe their musical moods) Hypnotize is more experimental with the use of bells and sounds very Indian-ish. Malakian, the composer and guitarist-cum-backup-vocalist gets a slightly longer time with the vocals while the harmony singing heightens the mood. Lonely Day is very interesting in the sense that it has a really good guitar mini-solo which is more complex  than what they have come up with till now. I choose to ignore criticism that it has received for its lyrics (use of words such as "most loneliest").

After the disappointment that was B.Y.O.B, here are two tracks that have helped prolong my interest in this band for just that extra length of time.
The two tracks stream on their official website in their entirety. So interested people can visit their website to sample the tracks. Since I have not listened to the entire abum yet I wouldn't commit myself in recommending anyone buying the albums. SOAD fans, of course can go ahead.


  1. SOAD's first album is intense. Its got wierd tunes and solid distortion booms. True.
    About the new ones, how can I get em without having to buy them? Give me some sources out here in nowhereland.
    And lastly, a prospective summer here is worse than a bygone summer here. The fear of the unknown is the most potent, so for the gloom. Well, I'll take your advice anyway and be a bit less sardonic about things, as far as possible...

  2. Listen to greendays holiday. frm american idiot.
    BTW, why have you stopped posting? Is it just me or is your posting coming in stattaco bursts?

  3. yup.... SOAD rules... lonely day is just too good!
    Green day is pretty awesome too..."american idiot" the album is actually worth a download..