SERJ TANKIAN Talks About His Differences With DARON MALAKIAN Regarding New SYSTEM OF A DOWN, Failed 2018 Album

Serj Tankian has been busy promoting his new book, Down With The System. This has naturally led to many discussions about System Of A Down and their lack of a new album for nearly 20 years.

Recently, Tankian revealed that in 2017 he offered to leave System Of A Down if the band could find a new singer, highlighting some of his differences with guitarist Daron Malakian. In a new interview with Spin, Tankian shared that disagreements about whose material should be prioritized were a significant issue within the band.

I was desperate to collaborate and be creative, but everything within the band felt rigid and inflexible,” Tankian wrote. “Whenever I mentioned a song I wanted us to work on, Daron never outright refused. It was always ‘Let’s work on that one next week,’ or ‘How about we finish this batch of songs first?’ We rarely ever seemed to get to my songs.”

In 2018, Tankian was ready to work on new material and came in with a “bullet-pointed manifesto” outlining his terms. He proposed that a new record should feature half his songs and half Malakian’s. Unfortunately, this plan didn’t come to fruition.

Reflecting on the future of System Of A Down, Tankian remains somewhat optimistic. “Daron defines himself as the primary songwriter for System. It’s important to him. Will that ever change? I don’t know. But I don’t see it negatively anymore because I understand it better. That doesn’t mean I have to create music in that capacity. As for a future System record, the saying goes, ‘Nobody knows!'”

Addressing the creative challenges, Tankian explained that he’s not interested in repeating the same album over and over. “Bands aren’t meant to do the same thing repeatedly. I never thought bands should last forever because that’s detrimental to the art. It creates redundancy and repetition. Sure, there are exceptions, and I don’t want to take away from what people love to do, but I think most artists should just make a certain number of records. That said, I love seeing artists collaborate, like when Chris Cornell did Temple of the Dog.

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