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Serj Tankian Takes on Woes of the World in ‘Harakiri’ Clip

Rolling Stone

Serj Tankian has always kept an eye on the world around him, but never has he so powerfully addressed so many of the wrongs going on in such a short amount of space as he does in the new ‘Harakiri’ video, which just premiered at Rolling Stone’s website.

The opening quote that appears on screen spells out the path of what’s to come. Tankian borrows from Ralph Waldo Emerson, who stated, “The human race will eventually die of civilization.”

What ensues is a doomsday laundry list, beginning with recent mass animal deaths of the drum fish, blackbirds, dolphins and sea birds. This is followed by more warning signs, such as cancer-causing plastics, rising radiation levels, mass air pollution, the obesity epidemic, and a world that has had countries at war since 2925 BC. There are also snippets of famous speeches from former presidents Lyndon Johnson and Ronald Reagan speaking to the dangers of the time that also drive home the point.

In our recent interview with Serj, he said of the song, “The title track came about when we experienced in January of 2011 the massive deaths of birds and fish around the world. And to me it was such a symbolic ominous sign of things that are happening that I could not [avoid] looking into it or feel for it, so that’s when I wrote the first song for the record and since then a lot of the songs just started coming to me. I didn’t really plan on making another rock record last year. It just kind of all came to me so I guess that’s good because the truth comes out unfiltered and pretty easily sometimes and that’s how this record was put together.”

As the video ends, Tankian offers another quote from Jean-Paul Sartre, which reads: “Man is fully responsible for his nature and his choices.” With that in mind and what Tankian has laid out in the video, it’s now our choice to do what we choose with the singer’s message.

Watch Serj Tankian's 'Harakiri' Video

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