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Review: Awesome show of strength by metal kings.

Byline: Sarah Jane Downing

System Of A Down Birmingham Academy

System Of A Down, the current kings of the new metal world, began their sell-out UK tour at the Birmingham Academy by ripping up a storm.

The venue was packed with an audience just waiting for System to prove that they had been worth the wait since last November when they had to cancel due to the events of September 11. They did so brilliantly with a show that went a long way to proving the hype is justified.

As well as being supremely heavy with a full metal thrust, their music has a complexity, combining influences from the US, Europe, and the Middle East with a bizarre mix of styles that range from death metal to jazz.

The set was dominated by tracks from the Grammy nominated album Toxicity. Prison Song set a manic pace from the start, followed closely by Deer Dance and Jet Pilot. Songs range from the surreal Frank Zappa-like Bounce to the anger of War and the conscience of PLUK, which tells of the Armenian genocide of 1915.

The performance was stunning, guitarist Daron and bassist Shavo constantly on the move. Vocalist Serj displayed an amazing vocal ability ranging from sensual melody to full-on scream, interspersed with Dervish-like spinning, without ever losing his aura of serenity.

System of a Down return to Britain in May to co-headline at Ozzfest - definitely an occasion not to be missed.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Mar 22, 2002
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