When you gather a group of musicians with Metal pedigree like the quintet in FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH, you’d better believe that they will come up with a body of work that will back up its bombast with undeniable musicianship! Euro-Metal veteran and previous U.P.O. guitarist, Zoltan Bathory, was the architect of what has morphed into FFDP, recruiting standout studio Metal drummer, Jeremy Spencer to add his trademark ‘double-bass mayhem’ to the equation. Vocalist, Ivan Moody’s previous band, MOTOGRATER, had played to huge crowds on Ozzfest and beyond, while guitarist Darrell Roberts toured with W.A.S.P. and wrecked the road. Matt Snell, bassist of acclaimed experimental outfits Anubis Rising and Deadsett, completed the circle by lending his considerable fretboard mastery to the band’s music.
FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH drags Heavy Metal, kicking and screaming, into a new era. Incorporating all we know and love about the old-school – the guitar solos, attention to songwriting detail, heavy vocals – with new-school melodic vocals and down-tuned guitars, the band bridges the gap in grand style and at full speed ahead! In short order, Zoltan pulled together his ‘dream team’ of musicians and they burst into the studio to record THE WAY OF THE FIST. The world-class production team they assembled: Stevo Shotgun Bruno – (Motley Crue, Prong), Mike Sarkysian (Spineshank) and Logan Mader (Machine Head, Soulfly) steeped the process in experience and credibility and brought all 10 tracks to a new level.
With song titles like “Death Before Dishonor,” “A Place To Die,” “Ashes” and “Meet The Monster,” THE WAY OF THE FIST is a white knuckle ride all the way through. Themes of alienation, seething anger and disgust make the lyrical content as intense as the music. The double-bass drum assault that nails you to the wall at the beginning of “Ashes” melts away into its chorus, only to come right back at you as the song continues. Ivan’s pained, clean vocals on the brooding “The Bleeding” make it the album’s near-ballad. Evocative of Metal greats like Slipknot, Testament and Pantera, the title track rips into the listener without mercy.
The details around the album are as well thought out as its music – the innovative artwork with its classic Metal images with a colorful, pop-art twist were created by Zoltan as the grand FFDP plan was coming together. The band’s DEATH PUNCH theme also comes into play in the fan experience – The Knuckleheads – and the various websites that provide and audio, photo and video content to the faithful. This will be all the more important as the band continues the success of THE WAY OF THE FIST – on the 2008 MAYHEM Tour and beyond. The band will be keeping a tour diary on their site, letting The Knuckleheads in on every bit of the debauchery!
All this said, “Five Finger Death Punch,” the blow with which ‘The Bride’ actually killed her mentor in KILL BILL Vol 2, turned out to be an accurately descriptive name. The band’s iron fisted delivery of their raucous rock and the strength of their will to be the last men standing in the world of heavy music make that point very well. The band sum it all up with lyrics from the title track - “You might win one battle. But know this, I'll win the fucking war…”