“I texted [the guys], ‘No matter how we feel about each other, no matter what issues linger from the past, we need to put them aside because this is bigger than System Of A Down and bigger than all of us… we need to do something to support our people,’” says guitarist Daron Malakian, who wrote the music and lyrics.
“We’re probably the only rock band that has governments as enemies, the only rock band that’s at war, so I wrote these songs to boost the morale of our troops and Armenians around the world,” Daron continues.
“The aggression and injustice being perpetrated against the Armenian people in Artsakh and Armenia by Azerbaijan and Turkey is a human rights violation and a war crime”, adds frontman Serj Tankian. “All of us in System realise this is an existential battle for our people, so this is very personal for us. What we need right now is for the world to put politics aside and support Armenia by sanctioning Turkey and Azerbaijan and recognising Artsakh”.
The video for Protect The Land features footage of protests and clashes in Artsakh, produced by bassist Shavo Odadjian, who also created the artwork.
“I wanted to show the unification of our people around the world for one common cause, illustrating the power in numbers,” says Shavo, “so we brought together people from all ages and professions who believe in and are fighting for that same cause. It’s one thing to come up with an idea, but to see it come alive as happened with this video, has been just incredible”.