Serj Tankian is making it clear that he will not be bullied into making a new System of a Down album. Just weeks after SOAD bassist Shavo Odadjian openly blamed the singer for the band’s eight-year gap between albums, Tankian spoke out with his side of the story.
Odadjian claimed that “It’s Serj who doesn’t want to do a new album! (sic),” however the singer recently told Artist Direct that he, “can’t write a forced record.”
“It’s like romancing someone at a time you don’t want to be romantic,” he said in the interview. “It’s not even a choice. We’ve enjoyed touring a lot. All of the tours have been well-received. We play really tightly—probably better than we ever have. It’s been cool. A new record requires three years. It’s not something I can do right now. When I can commit to a three-year album cycle, I’ll be down to do it.”
Tankian says a busy tour schedule with his other bands has limited the amount of time he has to dedicate to new projects.
“Things take time though. Everyone has a life and has to have the right frame of mind to make a record at the same time ,” he said. “I’ve been touring with System, The FCC, and orchestras around the world. I haven’t stopped. There hasn’t been much time-off. I want to make sure I have time for myself and my family. Only the four of us can decide what System means. I know the fans agree that’s what System is, and that’s amazing.”
While Odadjian made his feelings toward the singer clear when he said he might “go ahead and make a System record without him,” Tankian says he considers the band his friends.
“First and foremost, they’re my partners and friends I’ve created this music and career with over these years. I’m still very thankful. It’s something I enjoy doing. We started touring again three years ago for good purpose. I think we missed being a part of that together.”