Friday, July 20, 2018

Scars On Broadway : "Dictator"

Despite the fact I refuse to call this Daron Malakian and Scars on Broadway the new solo album from Daron Malakian is the closet things you are going to get to new System of a Down. Much like his first solo album, this is more rock n roll and less nu-metal than System of a Down. I have always like Malakian's vocals with System of a Down , perhaps more than Serj's. "Angry Guru" is less impressive than the more tightly written opener. The title track is more up tempo, but has a darker tension to that recalls some of System's best moment. It seems like this song was probably written for the next System of a Down album that never happened, as his takes on a lower croon that has more in common with Serj's vocal style. He also uses more of a stomping scream that really brings System back from the grave.

The dark and melodic nuances I prefer from his work continue to seep over the more bouncy rock of "Fuck and Kill". While I like the exotic touches when you compare it against the title track it's not the same caliber. Though it's not shabby either.  "Guns Are Loaded" is a little more of a power ballad in terms of dynamics. It's dark almost like something Marilyn Manson might do in one of his more organic moments. "Never Forget" is more of a straight forward rock song, that is energetic but doesn't capture everything I want from him as much as some of the other songs do. I'm not opposed to the more rock n roll side of what he does at it is done much better on "Talkin Shit". This album is somewhat hit or miss in this regard as the very next song fails to hit this very same sweet spot as effectively , maybe it's a case of going to the well too many times.

The guitar has a more frantic metal attack on "We Won't Obey". It's palm muted in an almost punk manner. More straight forward than your average System of a Down song, there are moment of quirky punch injected into it. "Sickening Wars" has a similar punk feel to it. It ends with two covers of these is an instrumental, the other is a Skinny Puppy song. It sounds nothing like the original Skinny Puppy song. I'll give this album a 9 as it's very solid and well done though not as hard hitting or gripping as the first one.

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