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 System of a Down - Hypnotize

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Starom
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PostSubject: System of a Down - Hypnotize   Fri Aug 01, 2008 7:49 am

System of a Down are certainly a band to have had their fair share of fame and attention. Their eponymus debut presented them as a band of fresh, vibrant music, not even beginning to tread the paths of old. Serj Tankian's powerful vocals, the thundering guitar of Daron Malakian, the flawless drumming of John Dolmoyan and the atmospheric bass of Shavo Odadjian helped to mould a sound that was so clearly recogniseable as System of a Down.

Their follow up to this record, Toxicity, did immensely well, debuting at #1, the singles released rapidly becoming classic tracks. Their next album, Steal this Album! had a similar effect, the songs all amazingly powerful, packed with such an energy and heaviness previously unrivalled by such a mainstream band.

Then came Mezmerize. And suddenly, they weren't the same band. It was as if Daron Malakian had had a revelation and suddenly felt the need to increase his personal input 200% and slightly overshadow the roles of the other members. His vocals were much more centralized than Serj's, his guitars totally eliminated Shavo's previously distinct bass, leaving only John Dolmoyan to shine in his past glory. It's little wonder that it was those two that formed the side project "Scars on Broadway".

And then, of course, came Hypnotize. Sadly, the same disappointments felt in Mezmerize were also felt here. There's no doubt that this record is System of a Down, that's for sure. But what's lacking, very plainly, is that incredible heaviness that they had on the earlier albums. Plus, Malakian's vocals can quickly irritate, as can some of the more ridiculous lyrics on tracks like "Kill Rock'N'Roll". The guitars sound as if the gain and treble are on full, totally eliminating the potential of Malakian to create that atmospheric blast that fans of the band were so used to.

Don't get me wrong, that are tracks that stand out, such as the incredibly ending track "Soldier Side" and the single "Hypnotize". Plus, Lonely Day has a fantastic guitar solo, livening up a somewhat odd System of a Down track. It shows, really, the reasons that Tankain was, for the first three albums, the main vocalist.

Besides, this album is better than most rock/alternative acts usually churn out. It has catchy riffs, very very meaningful lyrics and a vocal presence from Tankian that is virtually unrivalled in today's music scene. But, it just lacks that clarity, that strength and that edge that makes a usual System of a Down record. Whether it's as a result of the noisy riffs in tracks like Attack, or the silliness of tracks like "She's Like Heroine", this album doesn't quite win me over like Toxicity, System of a Down or Steal this Album did.

Perhaps that hiatus will give them chance to experience a neutral view and will give them a chance to return to basics and to what they do best - inspirational, heavy, thoughtful metal with a golden heart. Until then, 7/10 will have to do.

7/10
_____________________________________________________________

Sorry if these are getting annoying - I think I've only got three reviews left that I may post up here! ^^ I hope it was OK though!
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numberonejrio
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PostSubject: Re: System of a Down - Hypnotize   Fri Aug 01, 2008 1:31 pm

Very good review. And I'd have to agree.

Toxicity was my favorite album ^.^
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Starom
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PostSubject: Re: System of a Down - Hypnotize   Fri Aug 01, 2008 2:53 pm

Thanks very much ^^

I can never quite pick a favourite between Toxicity or System of a Down - they're both amazing albums with so much to offer! Very Happy But these newer two just didn't feel the same...
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PostSubject: Re: System of a Down - Hypnotize   Fri Aug 01, 2008 3:30 pm

wow you guys are awesome i need to get these on the site looks like it wont be until sunday night though thought i would have time today but super busy but I should have it up no later than Monday morning guys thanks and keep them coming
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PostSubject: Re: System of a Down - Hypnotize   Fri Aug 01, 2008 4:36 pm

Good to hear they're OK ^^ I've got another couple that I haven't posted up here yet, so I'll post them up soon too.
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