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Aftershock headliner? Festival announcement may provide a hint

Is video a coming attraction of Aftershock headliner?

Aftershock Festival’s lineup won’t be released until April 9, but fans are already speculating as to a headliner after this curiously specific promotional video was posted Thursday.
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Aftershock Festival’s lineup won’t be released until April 9, but fans are already speculating as to a headliner after this curiously specific promotional video was posted Thursday.

Aftershock Festival’s lineup won’t be released until April 9, but fans are already speculating as to a headliner after a curiously specific promotional video was posted Thursday.

A guitar riff suspiciously similar to that of “Prison Song” from System of a Down’s breakout sophomore album rages in the video’s background as distorted images of heavy metal concerts dance across the screen. When the music stops, a scratchy voice seems to mimic the song’s chorus line “they’re trying to build a prison.”

Dozens of fans on Facebook and reddit immediately jumped on the similarities, and a writer for hard rock news site Metal Injection said he was “certain” the video used “Prison Song.” A fuzzy, multicolored image also vaguely resembled the hand stretching out on the cover of System of a Down’s self-titled album, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year.

System of a Down hasn’t played in the United States since 2015, but has toured in Europe and some Middle Eastern countries.

The band hasn’t released a full-length record since 2005, but frontman Serj Tankian told Rolling Stone in a December 2017 interview that group members had recently played new songs for each other in an ultimately futile effort to put together an album.

Nearly 50,000 fans turned out to watch Ozzy Osbourne and Nine Inch Nails headline last year's Aftershock Festival. This year’s shows are scheduled Saturday, Oct. 13 and Sunday, Oct. 14 at Discovery Park. Tickets have not yet been put on sale.

Benjy Egel: (916) 321-1052, begel@sacbee.com

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