What does "System of a Down" mean?

This has been bugging me for awhile–usually I’m pretty good at figuring out what band names mean (or if I can’t I can find the answer on one of the fansites). This one, however, has eluded me. Can someone please enlighten? Thanks!

I tried looking on the band’s official site, to no avail. However, there is a BBS there. Maybe you could try asking there and see how that works for you.

It makes sense when you say it, but then when you think about it, you reconsider. I suppose it has to do with having a definite sheme or method of procedure of getting depressed, sick, or defeated.

Daron explains, “I thought of the name from a poem that I had written. It was originally called ‘Victims Of The Down,’ but Shavo didn’t really like the word ‘victims’ in the title, so I thought up ‘System Of A Down’ and it just clicked…Plus, now our album will be under the ‘S’ section, next to Slayer!”

From this interview.

I understand the meaning of this phrase refers to the sequence of events that occur in the unexpected failure of a machine or system of machines. An example could be a agency or manufacture doing a study or investigation into events that lead up to the unexpected and/or the unknown failure resulting in the crash or failure of a system. An example could be an airplane or missile unwanted failure or crashing. The finished study of the failures leading up to the crash would show “the system of the down.”

Wow, I think this might be the oldest zombie thread I ever started (and one of the first questions I ever asked as an SDMB member!)

Isn’t a “system of downs” an American football term? First down, second down, third down, punt or go for glory?

If you read post #4 you will find that it doesn’t actually mean anything at all. The person who wrote it just thought the words “clicked”.

It was a big trend for band names in the 90s to simply consist of words that seemed like they fit together but were in fact just a bunch of non-sequiturs.

[li]Stone Temple Pilots[/li][li]Pearl Jam[/li][li]Smashing Pumpkins[/li][li]Alice in Chains[/li][li]Porno for Pyros[/li][li]Velvet Revolver[/li][li]Satan’s Flying Monkey Boner[/li][/ul]
Ok, I made that last one up… :smiley:

Well you could describe American football as being “based on a system of downs,” but “system of downs” by itself isn’t a known phrase.

It makes me thing of Down syndrome.

Smashing Pumpkins isn’t a non sequitur, it’s a common thing for vandals to do in the weeks surrounding Halloween. It just turned out to be a cool band name.

Yeah, but I’m pretty sure Billy Corgan finally admitted that there was no meaning behind his choice of it, other than it sounding cool (and them urgently needing an official band name)…

Forget about that, I’m wondering why the eyes of a horse were wired on a jet pilot that smiled when he flew over the bay.

Most of these had a meaning, insider or alliterative or other

Pearl Jam refers to semen…

It started here

Velvet revolver is a reference to guns n roses.

I heard that “smashing” was the British slang term, so the band name means “Wonderful Pumkpins.”

Ah, well, that makes a lot of sense then, don’t it? :wink: