Talk:System of a Down

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Pending changes reenabled[edit]

Pending changes has once again been enabled on this article to weed out abuse by unregistered users. Any changes by new or unregistered users must be approved before they will appear on the live article. - Floydian τ ¢ 16:40, 13 December 2013 (UTC)

Heavy metal[edit]

Heavy metal should definitely be the first or second genre in the infobox. All of SOAD's albums are heavy metal, it even says it on the Wikipedia page of each one, and it's just plain obvious. They are a heavy metal band. Also I have reliable sources. MetalicMadness (talk) 19:36, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

I've always disliked the separation between the album articles and artist article; however, this is abundant across Wikipedia. The discussion that settled on the current genres for this article were held a while back, and can be found at Talk:System of a Down/Archive 7#Genre Sources. While I certainly agree that system are a "metal" band, I think alternative metal is more descriptive than the oft overused and more generic heavy metal, which can describe everything from Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin to Meshuggah and Lamb of God. That said, dunno how reliable MTV is for music these days haha. - Floydian τ ¢ 21:36, 14 April 2014 (UTC)
Good point. But also, it should say "experimental metal" where it currently just says "experimental" because whenever they play anything experimental, it's metal. "Experimental" could mean anything from "electronic music that's experimental" to experimental folk or minimalist or pop, so here it should specify that they are an "experimental metal" band, not just "experimental music" in general. MetalicMadness (talk) 00:44, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
I could agree to that. Let's see if anyone else has any thoughts or objections. - Floydian τ ¢ 02:13, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
I do not understand the fascination with people fervently arguing different categories to lock particular artists into. SOAD is perhaps difficult to confine or define by design, which would make a more universal and itself undefined term like experimental valid. But in reality, they are what they are. Appreciate it each in your own way. Trackinfo (talk) 06:59, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
Experimental is just too general. Like MetallicMaddnes said, it could mean anything. It should at the very least say experimental rock, but metal is more correct. - BrainPower3 (talk) 08:47, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
Because, Trackinfo, I want what is best for the article and the reader's understanding of the band because, after all, this is an encyclopedia. MetalicMadness (talk) 11:19, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
Well, do keep in mind that each genre isn't standing alone. All four genres combined describe SOAD's style, so they are hard-progressive-alternative-experimental-metal for all purposes sake, as opposed to sometimes a hard rock band, sometimes a progressive band, sometimes an alternative metal band... - Floydian τ ¢ 14:28, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
Also, give it a few days before changing. The discussion that hammered the current genres was carried out over a month and a half, so we should wait at least a week for less-frequent editors to chime in. - Floydian τ ¢ 14:30, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
My observations of this page over many years has shown a constant series of essentially "they are this . . ." "no they aren't" mini edit wars. While there might have been a declared consensus, the reality is there is no agreement. Each new editor that comes in adds their own interpretation of the genre. There is no correct answer. There is no wrong answer. They are, in a broad sense, hard to pin down. Band even regards themselves in that fashion. Who are we to override the band itself. Let me quote the article.

Odadjian stated "You can compare us to whoever you want. I don't care. Comparisons and labels have no effect on this band. Fact is fact: We are who we are and they are who they are.

Trackinfo (talk) 16:18, 16 April 2014 (UTC) ────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Indeed, and those type of quotes (which have also come out of Daron and Serj) are what lead many reviews to describe them as a Zappa-like group... both share that impossible to define musical style that is best summed up in the word eclectic. - Floydian τ ¢ 16:40, 16 April 2014 (UTC)

Trackinfo, I don't know why you're being so precious just because I suggested a slight change in one of the genres. Just because people say that they are hard to pin down doesn't mean that we can't collectively establish a genre in which to put them. And even if the four listed genres are combined to make SOAD's general genre, a reader of the article will not necessarily know this. As far as a reader who wants to know about the band is concerned by looking at the infobox, SOAD could be a band that sometimes does alt-metal, sometimes prog, sometimes hard rock, and sometimes experimental...??? what, minimalist? pop? electronica? rock? metal? reggae? bongo music? Nigerian grindcore? "Experimental music" just isn't specific enough for this band. MetalicMadness (talk) 21:21, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
What I am suggesting is there is no consensus. Even the declared consensus keeps getting abridged by other editors (not me). The declaration was obviously in error / artificial. Floydian suggested we give it a few days for other voices. I chimed in to remind you and others of the ongoing struggle we have had in trying to pin genres on this band for a long time. I am suggesting wider definitions might work better than narrow. Or as you suggested, a long list of specifics that describe small parts in their overall body of work. By the way, Dolmayan has been quoted saying similar things, so the band is all four united against being categorized. Trackinfo (talk) 07:09, 17 April 2014 (UTC)
It doesn't matter what the band says about themselves. We have to classify them as something. I don't really like genres myself, but we have to use them. They should be classified as experimental rock, if not metal. Yes, they technically are experimental music, but as we keep pointing out, that could mean just about anything. Experimental rock is already a broad enough term, and we do not need to be any more vague than that. That said, I am not against waiting for more consensus. I want to hear the opinions of others. BrainPower3 (talk) 12:51, 17 April 2014 (UTC)
No further discussion... could this be added now? MetalicMadness (talk) 17:00, 30 April 2014 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done - Floydian τ ¢ 20:51, 30 April 2014 (UTC)

Peculiar emphasis on ethnicity[edit]

Is the ethnicity of the band members really that important and relevant so as to be incorporated into the opening sentence? I find that extraordinarily odd. — Preceding unsigned comment added by CannotFindAName (talkcontribs) 23:52, 25 May 2014 (UTC)

Heavy metal/experimental metal[edit]

No. SOAD is definitely metal. Just listen to some of their songs, like Sugar, BYOB, and War, just to name a few. Those aren't rock. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Sethkarlthomas2000 (talkcontribs) 00:52, 30 August 2014 (UTC)

Try listening to an actual metal band or two, then come back and listen to those 'metal' tracks by System of A Massive Pop Culture Cash-in. Then let us know what you think — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:32, 3 December 2015 (UTC)

Nu metal revisited[edit]

I propose that nu metal be placed in the infobox parameter for genre, and the hidden note removed, the one that says don't put nu metal here.

I can see in talk archive 7 that a lot of discussion covered this question, but one of the most insistent editors was a sockpuppet of Sugar Bear, and in any case the evidence against nu metal was not very strong. I can find a lot of reliable sources saying SOAD was nu metal, but the ones that say SOAD was not nu metal are largely discussion forums and less reliable. Binksternet (talk) 16:59, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

SOAD lack almost every characteristic used to classify nu metal groups. The chorus of BYOB is about as close as they come. There were several noted music critics, as well as the band themselves, who dispute the fly-by labeling of others. - Floydian τ ¢ 17:14, 25 September 2014 (UTC)
The band's own opinion is worthless in this discussion. A passing mention of their opinion is certainly worthy of the article but it should not affect how we treat the critical reviews.
What I'm after here is a comparison of the sources that affirm nu metal versus the sources that deny nu metal, to get a sense of comparative authority. I bet we will find more weight on the nu metal side than the denial side. Binksternet (talk) 17:24, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

They don't have any hip hop (actual hip hop not just fast singing) industrial or funk influences, the only thing they have in common with nu metal is that murky downtuned guitar sound, so it makes more sense to just classify them as the parent genre of nu metal (alternative metal). That at least implies their genre is related to nu metal. Opinion aside there are a lot of reliable sources that oppose the idea of SOAD being nu metal so surely that counters the one that say they are. --I call the big one bitey (talk) 17:50, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

And what's interesting is that I haven't ever encountered a band who's genre is so contentious to the point that big music critics take time to insist that they are NOT nu metal. It's one thing to say "6 sources say nu metal, the other 5 don't", but it's completely different if its "6 sources say nu metal, but 4 sources specifically discount that". I think the discounting of a genre holds more weight than the application of a genre, personally. - Floydian τ ¢ 23:36, 5 October 2014 (UTC)
  • Come on, if you can ignore consensus on Mudvayne, which is clearly progressive metal and not nu-metal, you can ignore consensus on System of a Down, since SOAD made music which actually sounds like nu-metal. (talk) 21:48, 11 July 2015 (UTC)
It doesn't matter about our own opinions as genre is subjective. What we need is sources discussing how they do or do not fit in the genre. If it's a very mixed response about whether or not they belong to a genre or movement (in this case, nu-metal) that material should still be included in the prose. Andrzejbanas (talk) 04:36, 12 July 2015 (UTC)
Oh, come on, you wouldn't be claiming System of a Down isn't nu-metal if you didn't have a strong opinion that they're not nu-metal. There's a "consensus" here clearly based on opinion. (talk) 00:29, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

Regardless of any consensus. You require sources backing your claim first. Andrzejbanas (talk) 10:40, 16 July 2015 (UTC)

The consensus is and remains by reliable sources and by us editors that SOAD is NOT nu metal. It merits mention in the article, not in the infobox genre. - Floydian τ ¢ 19:54, 16 July 2015 (UTC)
Oh, bullshit. All this amounts to is that Wikipedia can distort reality to the whim of the editors' opinions and not actually work with reality, but against it. (talk) 21:11, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
Provide reliable sources claiming that they're nu metal if you wish editors to seriously consider including this in the infobox. ~ RobTalk 22:31, 22 July 2015 (UTC)
Not that this in favour, but this published book has a better case for them not being nu metal more than being for it: here. Andrzejbanas (talk) 13:05, 24 July 2015 (UTC)
I can't read the Google preview, which says it's not available. What does the book say? JuggaloProghead (talk) 22:52, 20 August 2015 (UTC)
""Althought System Of A Down weren't a nu-metal band - their music had its own, unique identity and they didn't use rapping or a DJ - they were lumped in with that movement because they departed so radically from the template, despite being recognisably a metal act." Andrzejbanas (talk) 12:36, 21 August 2015 (UTC)


The list of categories at the bottom of the article has become rather unruly. The present list includes:

I will clean these up in approximately one week (June 14th) unless arguments are presented for appropriate categories. This is far too much. - Floydian τ ¢ 04:26, 7 June 2015 (UTC)

Which ones do you propose deleting?--MASHAUNIX 21:16, 8 June 2015 (UTC)

Prog rock[edit]

I've removed prog rock currently. There were only two sources deeming the group to belong to the genre and they are both mis-attributed.

  • First was EW, with " tempering their heaviness with unexpected touches of acoustic folksiness and prog-rock flourishes"
  • Second was The Guardian, "The Armenian-American quartet switch styles, from explosive heavy metal to ornate prog rock to Balkan folk with the speed of an impatient channel-hopper".

The first source, states flourishes, which only suggests dabbling in the genre, not outright being the main or specific style of the group. While the Guardian source states several genres ranging from Balkan folk and only suggests again that the group seems to switch into this genre. That's the equivilant of a rock group doing a Bob Marley cover and all of a sudden they are a reggae band. Not specific and not strong enough. For these reasons, i've removed it. Andrzejbanas (talk) 13:14, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

I've undone your edit. As per the discussion here, numerous reliable sources claim SOAD are progressive in nature, bringing a Frank Zappa-esque style into alternative metal. - Floydian τ ¢ 20:27, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
The discussion is now re-opened here as the current sources (which you have re-added) do not state what they claim. If you want to back up this material, find stronger sources. Andrzejbanas (talk) 20:47, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
Further to that, the sources from the previous discussion are equally weak. The About article "Bouncing between prog-rock, metal, hard rock and arty exotic sounds, System of a Down now seemed to be a genre unto themselves." suggests the group moves between genres, but again is not specific. Again, this article speaks of "Middle Eastern folk music and flourishes of progressive-rock virtuosity" (Chicago Sun Times) also suggests folk and only calls it a "flourish", which is not specific. The MTV source is even more of a joke who are arguing against progressive rock, stating "Well, not exactly. While both bands have been dubbed leaders of a new progressive-rock movement, System are still a metal band at heart, while the Mars Volta are more of a psychedelic jam band.". So your conclusion made prior was not the best one made in my opinion. Andrzejbanas (talk) 20:54, 26 July 2015 (UTC)
This is purely your opinion... what makes you think it outweighs Jim Dero, or the Chicago Sun Tribune? Step back and gather resources to make a qualified argument. - Floydian τ ¢ 01:43, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
My argument isnt whether or not they belong to the genre, my argument and question is whether the sources are specific (they don't seem to be, and even worse is one of them sourced as calling them prog rock is actually saying they are not prog rock (the MTV source)). I'm more curious why you have "come to a consensus" 5 years ago that you ignore the other mentioned genres (folk) or that you think these are strong when they are actually really twisted and not at all what is being stated in the article currently.Andrzejbanas (talk) 01:48, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
So go forth and bring back 20 sources and we'll revisit the discussion, as five years is indeed a long time. - Floydian τ ¢ 02:24, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
I don't have to bring sources, because I'm not adding new content. My problem is that the current content does not accurately state what is being said in the prose. Simple as that. I'm more curious why you aren't addressing my questions such as "why are these sources appropriate?" or "why did you choose sources that do not state whats in the prose?" and instead just ask me search out...something? I don't think you are reading my posts Floydian. Andrzejbanas (talk) 02:45, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

I just watch over the page. Here are the sources I pulled up back in 2010. I'm sure we can find more now; group them together and calculate the output. Whining doesn't accomplish anything. - Floydian τ ¢ 04:36, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

  • Alt Metal, Nu Metal, Metal - [1] ( mirrors the allmusic review)
  • Metal, Prog Rock - [2]
  • Metal, Prog Rock, minus one to nu metal - Jim Dero (Chicago sun-times music critic)[3]
  • Metal, Prog Rock, Hard Rock - [4]
  • Experimental, metal (unspecific), minus one to nu-metal - [5]
  • Metal, mentions progressive and experimental nature ("Where the music is concerned, SOAD is adept at odd metre changes, vocal harmonies and employing dynamics in the most unbelievable manner.") - [6]
  • Heavy Metal (passing mention), Nu Metal - [7] "System of a Down have completely cast off the nu-metal tag in recent years", meaning they were nu metal, but aren't in recent years, likely referring to Mesmerize and Hypnotize since the article is from 2005.
Sure, and as stated before
MTV: Again, says they are not prog: "Well, not exactly. While both bands have been dubbed leaders of a new progressive-rock movement, System are still a metal band at heart, while the Mars Volta are more of a psychedelic jam band.". The articles argument is against calling them this.
Jim Dero does not say the band is a prog rock band either, but actually states the band ranges from "beautiful, pseudo-psychedelic arena-rock to Middle Eastern folk music and flourishes of progressive-rock virtuosity". Why are you skipping the other genres if you are still including prog? is more or less describing how hard it is to pin down the bands sound, by stating "Bouncing between prog-rock, metal, hard rock and arty exotic sounds, System of a Down now seemed to be a genre unto themselves.". Again, its not specific enough.
Can't read the article.
I wouldn't mention an interpretation of a style from the thats exactly what we are not supposed to do.

I have some source as well:

  • "Though they are pioneers of the nu-metal genre, ill-timed releases mean that SOAD have been previously overlooked by newcomers to the scene. It is now catchup time, with tracks such as the single Chop Suey proving to be effective tools in the race." (Baird, Dugald, et al. "SYSTEM OF A DOWN: Toxicity." Music Week 18 Aug. 2001: 31. Academic OneFile. Web. 27 July 2015.)"
  • "Multi-platinum alternative metal act System of a Down" CMJ

The inclusions of the vagueness, seem like we should also include "free jazz" because of this Spin article: "“Sugar,” which loosed bizarro singer Serj Tankian on free jazz verses between crunching refrains, while the rest of the album toyed with oom-pah circus music (“Peephole”) and thrashabilly (“DDevil”)."source. Andrzejbanas (talk) 06:08, 27 July 2015 (UTC)

I agree that the MTV article argues against calling them progressive. Jim Dero describes them as having flourishes of progressive rock, which is enough for me to consider it an argument for progressive rock. also specifically lists prog rock as a sound they use. Bands can work in multiple genres; listing many genres does not weaken any one of them. Either way, two sources for and one against isn't particularly strong evidence that they work in prog rock. I don't consider a reliable source, so it's really only one reliable article calling them progressive, with one article arguing against it. It should be removed. ~ RobTalk 15:42, 27 July 2015 (UTC)
"which is enough for me to consider it an argument for progressive rock.". Not it is not. That's like saying the Police are a reggae band because of "flourishes of reggae" or or a band is a funk band because of a funky bass. Absolutely not. And yes, so far the others are not very signifigantly for it, I'm very surprised the previous consensus thought this was the way to go. Andrzejbanas (talk) 09:17, 28 July 2015 (UTC)
So far we have two for remove and one for keep and the one for keep has not responded to issues on their sources not being strong. If there is no further discussion in the next few days, I'll remove the genre from the infobox. Andrzejbanas (talk) 20:31, 4 August 2015 (UTC)

This artist is not related to progressive rock (as a genre 70s)

Yes, there are experimental and difficult moments, but they are well within the alternative metal.

reasonable to call it experimental rock or metal, as is a broader concept — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:13, 9 August 2015 (UTC)

Well put. While I myself believe progressive rock to be a more encompassing genre that includes experimental, ambient, worldly or alternative music, it seems consensus is clear the other way. As such I withdraw my objections and support the removal of progressive rock at this time, with no prejudice to future discussions. - Floydian τ ¢ 07:03, 9 August 2015 (UTC)

As there have been no further proof to back this up and at least three more posts (two users, one anonymous IP), I'm going to remove this category. Further conversation for it's re-inclusion is welcome, and don't forget to cite your sources. Andrzejbanas (talk) 07:23, 9 August 2015 (UTC)

I'll note that it is still relevant to include the flourishes and what not in the style section of the article, though removal of progressive rock from the infobox makes sense for now. - Floydian τ ¢ 01:40, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
Oh yeah that's fine. But I'm glad we agree that it's not a strong enough term for the infobox. Andrzejbanas (talk) 10:04, 10 August 2015 (UTC)
  • Are there any Cardiacs fans here that can help gather sources for more verifiable genre listings on that article, while we're talking about "things that relate to prog"? --JuggaloProghead (talk) 22:50, 20 August 2015 (UTC)

List of songs recorded by System of a Down‎[edit]

I was surprised to see there was not a List of songs recorded by System of a Down‎. I redirected the page to here for now, but feel free to get a list going before me if you have time and interest. ---Another Believer (Talk) 16:52, 26 July 2015 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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