System of a Down: Chop Suey Meaning
Song Released: 2001
Chop Suey Lyrics
We're Rolling Suicide
Wake up(wake up)
Grab a brush and put a little makeup
Hide the scars to fade away the shakeup
Why’d you leave the keys upon the table?
Here you go create another fable
You wanted to
Grab a brush...
anonymous Dec 31st, 2006 12:36pm report
I have read a lot of interpretations on this song, and many off them are deep and logical, but I have yet to find a single explanation that covers every aspect of the lyrics. I tried to take the song very directly and make conclusions on what I heard. Here goes nothing.
The beginning of this song talks about a person who is trying to cover up their problems so that everyone else thinks that they are totally fine. We know that the person is going through hard times because they talk about how he wants to hide "scars" to fade away the "shake up" (fight). We see that the person is trying to hide it on the outside (grab a brush and put on a little make-up, hide the scars...)but, of course, the problems, whatever they may happen to be, won't go away. Now, the speaker states that others don't understand his self-righteous suiside. Of course they wouldn't understand, they just see his outside, not his cold, troubled inside.
Now for the "father" stanza. Apparently this is a quote from Jesus before he died for us on the cross, but I don't think that this stanza actually refers to Jesus. First off, I m positive that the speaker is talking to God, not his dad, because if he is going to die, why and how could he command his spirit to his dad, it just doesn't make any sense. Anyway, I think that the the speaker is angry at God for bringing him so much misfortune, hence the "Why have you forsaken me..." bit. Think about it. Living day in and day out having to hide a secret from the rest of the world that keeps bitting him in the rear end. Sounds like a pretty sad life if you ask me. I think that he is handing over his spirit to God now in hopes that God can bring him a sort of peace.
For the "Why'd you leave the keys up on the table" line, I think that this symbolizes that the speaker (although I don't know if he is the one who actually quoted this)has given up on his life. You see, keys give you access to your home, to that vast majority of you. Leaving them somewhere kind of hints that he doesn't care enough to keep track of his own lifeline, that he has left them for someone to find. Lastly, the "I cry when angels deserve to die" line symbolizes his death, how sad others will be when a "perfect, happy, carefree" guy kills himself
anonymous Apr 3rd, 2006 4:45pm report
I think the song has to do with suicide bombings. The whole "wake up ..." is this person getting ready for their final day, how people look nice for their final day. "why'd you leave the keys up on the table?" - because they aren't coming back home. The whole "self-righteous suicide" is him trying to convince god and himself it's what he has to do (maybe for his country; he could have even been forced into it). And perhaps the "angels deserve to die" isn't himself, but all the innocent he has to kill. and the whole "why have you forsaken me" part is that he knows what he has done is wrong but he wants god to understand why he is doing this. That's why he sings about "trusting in his self-righteous suicide". all-in-all this person is going to do a suicide bombing, and is trying to convince god that he shouldn't be judged, its what he has to do. its confusing maybe, but it matches everyline
anonymous Mar 20th, 2006 3:52pm report
I believe the part about the leaving the keys on the table is about whoever tried to hide the scars (hide the bad things in the world, done to them, or done by them), like the Turks in the Armenian Genocide, or the Media covering certain events, or someone abused by another. They tried to hide whatever it was, but they left some kind of clue to the truth in the open, the key to the secret and truth, and that line is asking why they leave the key to the truth out if they are trying so hard to hide it.
I think this song is left open for interpretation on many levels. I think it has a basic theme of fakeness, or lying to cover something up. This could refer to the Genocide, Media, or someone abused by another or themselves. Chop Suey is a fake chinese dish, as it was created in the US, and it represents that basic theme. I also beleive it relates to religion in covering up certain things that make them look bad, and how religion plays in the world today. If someone commits a self rightious suicide, in whichever way you wish to take that, they can either be considered as a maryter to some, or a statistic to others. Their death could be used to prove the point of others, making it self rightious in a sense.
But that's just my opinion. This has very open possibilities for interpretation as I said before, and that's what SOAD tries to do. They don't want to explain everything to you, it's more important to them what the song means to you then what it means to them.
anonymous Apr 15th, 4:19pm report
Wow lots of outlandish interpretations out there that rely on lots of speculation.
What I do know is that. That regardless of what the band says. Starting from "Father" down is basically the final death of Jesus and what his thoughts might have been based solely on how most Christians interepret its meaning. Most Christian doctrine teaches that God the Father turned his eyes away from Jesus as he was the a sacrifice for all of our sins and could not look upon him. And thus God the father turned away. The part of commending his spirit and being forsaken is direct from the bible.
The band obviously believes it was a self righteous suicide instead of what Christians believe was the will of God. The reference to angels deserve to die is most likely a reference to the devil and the other fallen angles. The bible states a third of the angels were cast out of heaven.
I think the first part of the song is about how most people only give lip service to the gospel and don't really trust in the Jesus. So its Jesus talking about them not trusting in his suicide for them....as they go through life in such a mundane unhappy way.
anonymous Dec 31st, 12:02pm report
One theory is that the song could be construed as domestic abuse. The brush and makeup part could be to hide the bruises of domestic battery out of fear and embarrassment. Then the part about leaving the keys on the table could be symbolism for giving up on your life as your keys are means to accessing everything you own. And then the line about 'creating another fable' refers to people fabricating stories to hide the truth to keep face. The 'you wanted to' part suggests the abuse is their fault as seen through the eyes of a violent partner as 'they provoked them'. The self righteous suicide part could mean the abused partner actually believes it is their fault after years of abuse. The lyrics about 'why have you forsaken me?' refers to the person's confusion at why they are in an abusive relationship when they are a 'good' person themselves. The 'when angels deserve to die' lyrics highlights the true innocence of these people.
I thought that the song was about an abuse victim, forced to hide their true selves. The victim cries out to God, asking why he has done this to them, and asking for forgiveness for committing suicide, as it seems justifiable. I also think this could be a microcosm of Armenia, a country that is a victim of abuse, with many people taking their own lives.
anonymous Oct 31st, 2012 10:18am report
First of all, I will refer to the words of Daron Malakian who once said that the song is about how others interprate the death of a person according to the kind of it for example if he abuses drugs and "he deserves it" and so it goes "I cry when angels deserve to die".
Of course, the other lyrics are actually like any other lyrics by SOAD: making little sense because they deal with multiple things at a time and lack cohesion. Probably the verses in the beginning are refering to the ordinary lifes of people while behind them a secret is held uncovered (apparently deppression since the person wants people to understand why he wants to end his life).
The part with the words of Jesus is actually not only a way to show the dramatic situation of the person but also to show religious people that even the Son of God that they praise suffered and just wanted to end this (through death). That way he seeks the approval of them to end his own life without being marked as a sinner or quitter.
These dudes are muslim who view Jesus as only a prophet and not the Son of God...the song is deep in the beginning keys on the table refer to the Catholic Church make up and all that stuff fetal position is vague refernce to pedifile priests (who are like 1% of the priests) The self righteous suicide would be a muslims interpretation of Christs crucifiction which they deny ever happened. The father why have you forsaken me is directly referencing Christ.
Basically the song is mocking Christianity.
remember islam was created by a man named Muhammad and he didn't walk on water or do any miracles for that matter...oh and he created islam 700 years after Chtist. Chop Suey that S.O.D. lol
anonymous Jun 4th, 2012 6:20pm report
First of all they said themselves that it's not about god or the bible see post #2 js ah
anonymous May 23rd, 2012 5:04pm report
all of these are great interpretations, but when does "you wanted to" come in? everyone tends to leave that out, it's because of those 3 words that throws off most of these interpretations (at least for me)
anonymous May 9th, 2012 5:41am report
The posts i've read take it way too seriously. Just becuase we have biblical references, or suicide allusions doesn't mean that the song is about either killing yourself or martyrdom. Maybe we need to listen to what they are saying, instead of what we think they are saying.
It really sounds as if it's just about life. We all have scars (...put on a little make up), devote our lives to something and die (self righteous suicide, why have you forsaken me). It's definately not about death, destruction or drug addiction. Definate hints of Armenian Genocide but still, I think the song just is what it is!
anyways not gonna waste your time with BS but that's my 2 cents.
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