Published May 14, 2020While System of a Down were slated to perform live in Los Angeles this month, a new album from the group remains highly unlikely. However, Serj Tankian has teased a new solo release with material that was intended for a potential band album.
Tankian shared the news in a new interview with Spin, revealing that he has "an EP of rock songs that's gonna be out this year."
"Originally I had these songs in mind for a System record if we were to end up doing a System record," he explained. "But as we could not really see eye to eye on how to go forward with that I decided to finish them off myself and release them as an EP."
When asked why the material had been earmarked for a potential band project, Tankian elaborated, "I always have random rock tracks done at different times and I sit on them. And then one day the right project or right idea for releasing them will come along."
Of the new songs, Tankian teased, "They all have piano or synthesizers, which is a little different than the four-person crew with System, although we had some synths as well. It's got stuff that's really heavy, heavy and there's a funny aspect and then there's a song about my son. It kind of runs the gauntlet on diversity of thematic expression: political, non-political. I guess that's always been me, all over the place."
Tankian floated the working title Elasticity for the forthcoming set, "just because I wanted to do it with System and it didn't happen. For me, it's not Toxicity but it is Toxicity. [Laughs.] That's what I'm thinking of calling it. I haven't finalized it, but that's what I'm thinking of calling it. We'll probably put it out later this year."
System of a Down have yet to follow up Mezmerize and Hypnotize, their fourth and fifth studio LPs which both arrived in 2005. The band reissued their studio catalogue on vinyl in 2018.
News of Tankian's new EP comes shortly after the release of Fuktronic, the long-awaited conceptual collaboration between the System singer and Jimmy Urine of Mindless Self Indulgence.
Tankian's most recent solo full-length was 2013's classical symphony Orca, and he delivered a jazz-fusion full-length as Jazz-Iz-Christ that same year. In the time since, he has scored a series of films and a mobile video game.
Tankian's last proper rock album was 2012's Harakiri.