Sound — 6
I am too cheap to go out and buy the CD so I heard They Say a few times before I went and finally got a copy, and I was quite optimistic. And thus, I was disappointed. Drums, bass, and guitar were nothing special nor exceptional, although they did retain a certain System feel from the drummer. However, once Daron took over as main singer, his melodic guitar completely dropped off the face of the album. The guitar is bland rhythm, with some decent melodic lines, but nothing nearly as interesting as the work Daron did under System. The Eastern European feel too has somewhat disappeared, except with one song that I can't remember off the top of my head. All in all, I feel that Daron took the System songs that were less melodic and didn't counter-balane them with anything else.
Lyrics — 8
I have a joke about System of a Down, said with all the love in the world: They make up 3 2-line phrases, and use one for the verse, one for the chorus, and one for the bridge. This applied to this album as well as Serj (although less so for Serj, since he decided that lyrics and logic no longer mix). One song (Chemicals), I simply could not listen to because of the way the begining was sung. While the lyrics are nice, and memorable, there are not nearly enough of them. One thing they do have going for them is the melodic singing combined with some of Daron's awesome vocal harmonies.
Overall Impression — 7
I must say, I was absolutely delighted when I heard that Daron was doing his own thing too. I had listened to Elect the Dead by Serj, and after about a week of dubiously playing it, really warmed up to it. If you combine this album and Elect the Dead, you get a System of A Down album, with the Scars providing drive and rhythm, and Serj providing lyricism and melody. I don't think anyone can compare this to a System album favorably. However, some songs were good, and some where memorable, and so, I keep it in my collection. I only hope that by keeping the title of the album eponymous, they don't mean to suggest tht this is all they have to offer.