Serj Tankian – Harakiri – Review

Today I have decided to review the latest solo effort from Serj Tankian ‘Harakiri’, I’ve held off reviewing this for a few days through a combination of the fact I’ve been pre-occupied and I wanted to listen to it a few times before I made this post. Let me start by saying I love System Of A Down and I genuinely think Serj Tankian is one of the best Rock/Metal vocalists of my generation, it was for this reason I was gutted when System went on hiatus, from this however we got a really good debut solo album from Serj with ‘Elect The Dead’ and a Phenomenal one from Daron Malakian with ‘Scars On Broadway’, Serj’s second effort though ‘Imperfect Harmonies’ I thought was quite a let down and then with the System reunion I did wonder if that would spell time on his solo efforts, he has now however returned with ‘Harakiri’.

My fears that this could be another let down were soon put to rest though as ‘Harakiri’ in my opinion is a massive return to form for Serj Tankian, Opening track ‘Cornucopia’ is a fantastic way to start the album, Serj’s vocals are at the brilliant best that you come to expect from him, and the multi layered guitars suit brilliantly the more upbeat nature of the song and the chorus sounds huge! Second track is lead single ‘Figure It Out’ which is arguably the most System sounding song on the album, it’s a pretty good song and Serj’s Megaphoned vocals work well but considering it’s the lead single I would say it’s probably one of the weaker tracks. ‘Ching Chime’ is up next and it has an immediate really eastern sound to it throughout the verses before a soaring chorus, Serj’s vocals in this song compliment the guitars amazingly swelling up and down and helping to create the melodrama of a track that harnesses Serj at his quirky best. Title track ‘Harakiri’ is a much slower tempo affair that comes at a good time and showcases Serj’s more introspective side and it comes across as much more personal and is a highlight on what is shaping up as a great album. At this point the album give way to a couple of tracks that are more mellow than what has come previously before building once again to a crescendo at the end. Second to last track ‘Uneducated Democracy’ has a real punk feel to it which works surprisingly well before album closer ‘Weave On’ finishes us off with another rocker.

One of the things that really impresses me with this album is that for the first time on a solo album Serj seems to have got the balance right between experimentation and keeping to the System Of A Down sound that made him famous, as much as I love ‘Elect The Dead’ it was a record that was basically how System Of A Down would have sounded without Daron Malakian, by contrast I thought second offering ‘Imperfect Harmonies’ went too far the other way, here however he seems to strike the balance almost perfectly. It is genuinely great to hear Serj’s voice again soaring over new material, it has to be said however as enjoyable as this album is (and it is thoroughly enjoyable) I can’t help but be left feeling I really wish it was new System Of A Down material, this aside it’s a really strong album worth checking out.

Rating: –


Tracklisting: –

1. Cornucopia
2. Figure It Out
3. Ching Chime
4. Butterfly
5. Harakiri
6. Occupied Tears
7. Deafening Silence
8. Forget Me Knot
9. Reality TV
10. Uneducated Democracy
11. Weave On

Recommended Tracks: –

‘Cornucopia’, ‘Ching Chime’, ‘Harakiri’, ‘Uneducated Democracy’



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s