Why System of a Down’s Serj Tankian Doesn’t Plan on Touring for the Foreseeable Future
System of a Down have scaled back greatly on touring over the last few years, with only one performance taking place in 2023 at Las Vegas' Sick New World Festival. Between the band and his solo projects, Serj Tankian has a couple of reasons why he doesn't plan on touring for a while.
The 2024 installment of Sick New World is System of a Down's only confirmed show next year, and in a new interview with Revolver, Tankian said that it'll likely be the only one they play. Even after the release of his own Invocations live album, he doesn't have any plans to take the music on the road, though he said it's possible he'll play at a festival or another other special event.
The frontman praised Sick New World festival for bringing together a lot of '90s and 2000s bands that System of a Down have toured with in the past, and said that they decided to pay it again next year because of how much fun it was.
"When you're doing a tour, after a while it's like Groundhog Day. You try to be as creative and present to each show as you can, but after the second week, you've been there, done that already," he explained. "But when it's one show, it's actually unique and special and fun. Our friends and family came out, so it became a really cool, fun event."
Tankian shared that he was dealing with health issues last fall due to a back surgery he'd undergone, but in the Revolver interview, he said that his health wasn't the only reason touring took a back seat in his life.
"I have some other things I'm dealing with right now, which may or may not be affected by travel or touring. It wasn't just a health-related decision as far as cutting down on touring, but also a lifestyle decision. Based on family and vision," he elaborated.
"I've been touring for 20-something years, on and off, of course. Not every year. And it's fun, it's profitable, it makes a lot of people happy in terms of being out there and sharing the music and [seeing] the reaction, and people really enjoying it and getting that feedback. But after years of doing it and the travel that's involved, it's one of those things where it's not the top priority on my list in life."
The band also hasn't released any new music since the songs "Protect the Land" and "Genocidal Humanoidz" came out in November of 2020. None of the members seem to think that they'll be hitting the studio to work on new material anytime soon, but you never know what the future holds.
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