Sound — 8
First off, this is a review of the String Quartet Tribute to System of a Down's Mezmerize, the thing wouldn't publish without selecing an artist. I was really skeptical at first about this album, since a lot of System Of A Down cover's I'd heard at the time (mine included) just didn't do justice to their music. These four men took the time to either learn these songs by ear, or, the record company told them to play it, whichever you prefer, and put some good time and effort into it. Everything is played by the strings, two violins, a viola, and a cello. A lot of this just sounds completely insane, considering how fast some of the lyrics go on Violent Pornography and Revenga. The harmonies in this record are astounding, better than Serj and the less talented (yeah, I said that) Daron. The viola keeps up with every lyric, and actually plays the melodies. This guy is good. The violins are the middlemen of the quartet, picking up on a lot of the guitar and bass work. They aren't featured up front like the viola, but make their presence known. And the cello. It plays the drum parts. I guess the cello plays bass too, but it definitely keeps the songs going at a blinding pace, especially for string instruments. The sound deserves at least an 8, but you just kind of get tired of the viola around Old School Hollywood.
Lyrics — 7
The viola picks up on all of the lyrics, leaving nothing to be missed. The violins fill in the part where Daron and Serj harmonize. I'll rate the viola here. The musician behind it really takes to high standars, playing incredibly fast and with great accuracy and intonation. 7, the crazy fast high sound kind of gets to you.
Overall Impression — 9
I later picked up the regular string quartet tribute of System's old stuff, and found it to be quite good. Overall, this album will stack up to other string quartet tributes. The best songs are what you'd think, Soldier Side, Revenga, Violent Pornography, Question!, and Lost in Hollywood, although there is no bad song on the album. I love almost everything about this, I'm as into clasical music like this now as I like metal. The only thing is the viola just gets annoying! I'd definitely burn myself some copies of this album so if it were stolen, well, you know. With the age of computers.