SYSTEM OF A DOWN Singer Says Band Went Through Troubled Times Last Year

SYSTEM OF A DOWN frontman Serj Tankian recently spoke to Australia's Beat magazine about the group's forthcoming album "Mesmerize/Hypnotize", which is currently being mixed at a Los Angeles studio by Andy Wallace (KORN, LIMP BIZKIT, DISTURBED, SEPULTURA).

Asked what prompted the idea to release a double album (the first disc — "Mesmerize" — will drop in the spring, while the second disc is scheduled to come out roughly six months after that), Tankian said, "It was not an idea that we went in to the studio with. When we went in to record, we wanted to make sure that each song was as good as it could possibly be, and when we were deciding what songs would finally make the album, we realized that we had two full albums of songs that were all amazing and all worked well together. We are recording, mixing and mastering all of it at once. That way both albums will flow like a single piece and really work as one. The second release will add more to the same feeling created by the first."

Regarding whether the band feel like they know each other better musically, Serj said, "Everything changes based on all sorts of experiences. How (SOAD have changed) is something you may have to sort out. We have all been through some troubled times over the last year and I think a lot of that emotion is coming through in our new songs. We have learned a lot of each other’s strengths and weaknesses and that helps us as a group, both live and when we are recording. I'm not sure it changes the formation process, but enhances it, based on everyone's known fortes…"

When quizzed about producer Rick Rubin's continued involvement with the group (he has been at the helm of all the band's previous three releases), Tankian replied, "Rick understands SYSTEM's vibe and music really well, and in that way has always contributed to its resounding projection. He is an amazing producer who knows this music from the studio/engineering perspective as well as from the musician's. We enjoy working with him, and I think he helps us in achieving the sound and feeling we are looking for on our albums. Production-wise, I think Daron's guitar on this one is on another level with his layering and mixing of sounds."

Read the rest of the interview at this location.

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