The poems – all 87 of them – are taken from Tankian’s Cool Gardens book, which was published by MTV Books and Simon & Schuster in 2002. Together with the music and video, they provide an intimate, somewhat trippy listening experience.
Tankian says: “Cool Gardens Poetry Suite animates the book to where the words come off the page and dance into the auditory canals of listeners sweetened by intimate musical landscapes.”
The videos for Cool Gardens Poetry Suite were created by visual artist David Bradford, who previously collaborated with Tankian on the video that accompanied his Record Store Day special release of Fuktronic, and on the videos for System Of A Down’s Protect the Land and Genocidal Humanoidz.
The poems were also made available as an audiobook last year, but are now available on all good streaming platforms, augmented by the music and embellished by video where appropriate.
Earlier this year Tankian released the song ideas from System Of A Down’s long-awaited, on-off-on-off-on-off and ultimately cancelled sixth album as a five-track EP titled Elasticity. And later this year he’ll release Cinematique, an “assemblage” of 25 cinematic compositions that’ll veer from classical to modern. It’ll be released as two collections – Illuminate and Violent Violins – August 6.
Before the end of year, Tankian will also release two film soundtracks, for Truth To Power and I Am Not Alone, both documentaries he’s produced and scored.
Listen to the Cool Gardens Poetry Suite below.