Still, System of a Down -- the band also includes singer-guitarist Daron Malakian, bassist Shavo Odadjian, and drummer John Dolmayan -- has a signature style. While informed by metal, Toxicity has an Eastern rhythmic structure that pervades the album. The band, which is of Armenian descent but based in Los Angeles, actually recorded 33 songs in only nine weeks, with the guidance of producer Rick Rubin (Beastie Boys, Slayer). Andy Wallace (Rage Against the Machine, Limp Bizkit) mixed 17 of those, 14 of which made it onto the album. Yet Toxicity doesn't sound rushed. Although the awkward time signatures keep the listener off balance, the musical performances here are superb, with crunchy guitars and off-kilter timing resonating more than most other rap-metal acts to which the group is compared.