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4/24/18

BY NICOLE GHAPGHARAN

Velvet Hammer
’s System of a Down recently announced two shows in October, but what fans didn’t expect was for guitarist (and vocalist) Daron Malakian to release new music. Scars on Broadway, the side project that emerged during SOAD’s mid-2000s hiatus and is also repped by Velvet Hammer, has reappeared with a name change—Daron Malakian and The Scars on Broadway. A new single, “Lives,” just dropped, and an upcoming album, titled Dictator, is due 7/20.

“Lives” is meant to commemorate the Armenian Genocide of 1915, but Malakian notes that, “It could be for anybody whose people have suffered [similar tragedies].” With SOAD’s last performance hitting on the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, this new single couldn’t have come at a better time, as today (4/24) marks the 103rd anniversary.

The music video (embedded below) pays homage to the devastating event and portrays the culture through traditional Armenian folk dancing. “I don't want to be looked at as a victim forever," shares Malakian. "I want to show people other parts of our culture, and this video does that.” As a descendant of a genocide survivor, I’m deeply moved by Malakian’s efforts to raise awareness and admirably illustrate the Armenian culture through his music.

A portion of the proceeds from iTunes sales will be donated to ArmeniaFund to run the Lives First Aid Kits Campaign, which will supply life-saving first aid kits to villages in Artaskh.