Lineup: Daron Malakian: Guitar, Vocals Other Performers: Setlist:
John Dolmayan: Drums
Shavo Odadjian: Bass, Backing Vocals
Serj Tankian: Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards
Daron Malakian: Guitar, Vocals
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By April Corbin, LasVegasWeekly.com
1. A faint stench of sweat lingered in the air before System of a Down took the stage for their sold-out Pearl concert Sunday night. (Thank opener Gogol Bordello for properly warming up the crowd with their gypsy punk.) But after System’s nearly two-hour long set? Oh, it smelled—like badassery.
2. Killing time between bands is usually boring. Not tonight. A giant white sheet masked the stage and a light from the soundboard projected a SOAD logo, which inevitably led to one thing: shadow puppets. I have never seen so many shadow holes being shadow fisted in my entire life.
3. Serj Tankian doesn’t look or move the way you might assume a typical metal frontman should, which is fitting because System isn’t anywhere near your typical metal band. He sported a white button-down, like he’d arrived late from a board meeting and the only thing he could do before the show was un-tuck his shirt. He also shook his hips more than most female performers do. I guess when you can scream and sing the way he can, you don’t need to over compensate with black eyeliner or metal spikes.
4. System closed their set with the high-energy song “Sugar” from their earliest days, and with it formed a pit spanning almost the entire width of the GA floor. When the song ended, the band took their bows, threw out extra picks and drumsticks and departed the stage. No encore necessary. They’d played it all and played it well. Now, if only other bands would take notice and axe the bullshit move of saying they’re done, leaving without playing their biggest hit and then coming back after they’ve forced an ego stroke of screaming and chanting from the audience.
5. All this, summed up in one succinct lyric: Everybody’s going to the party, have a real good time …