An Interview with Drummer Jeremy Spencer of Five Finger Death Punch
Band Photo: Five Finger Death Punch (?)
Seeing these guys in concert was amazing! I was able to get a phone interview with Jeremy Spencer, drummer of Five Finger Death Punch. They were currently touring with Korn, Hellyeah, and Droid. Their album "The Way of the Fist" is currently in stores. Jeremy explained how the band was formed a few years ago and their current future plans.
Scottydawg: Hey, Jeremy. I saw you guys at the Chevy Centre and it was a hell of a show!
Jeremy Spencer – Thank you very much.
Scottydawg: Real quick, can you give us a little background info about Five Finger Death Punch.
Jeremy: We've been around for a little over two years now. I actually heard some of Zoltan's (Zoltan Bathory, guitar) demos and I really liked it so I contacted him. He and I agreed to get together in a room and start hashing out some ideas. Probably about a month after that, we started writing for a record; just he and I. We didn't even have the band together (laughs). And then obviously we had to look for players. We had about six songs done. And then we started looking for players. We got Matt (Matt Snell, bass) and then we found Ivan (Ivan Moody, vocals) and he agreed to do it. I've known Darrell (Darrell Roberts, guitar) because I was in W.A.S.P. with him for about ten minutes a few years ago. I stayed in contact with him and we decided to bring in a second guitar players and I knew he was the guy; so we brought him in.
Scottydawg: Where did the name Five Finger Death Punch originate? When I hear that name, it reminds me of an old kung fu movie (laughs).
Jeremy: Absolutely. Zoltan saw that Kill Bill movie where they had a pun you hit em in the chest and you take five steps and your heart explodes; the five finger death punch. So basically we thought it was a great name for a metal band and especially five guys in the band; five fingers on the hand. So we decided that we each kinda represent a finger and we all come together to make a fist; five finger death punch and it's kind of appropriate.
Scottydawg: That's interesting. Tell us about your first album, "The Way of the Fist."
Jeremy: Yeah our first and only record so far. It came out July 31st, been selling pretty decent, and so we're pretty fortunate man; we're out here getting in front of as many people as possible and they're spreadin the word. It's been a good response so far.
Scottydawg: And then there was a clean version released August 28th. I could never understand that (laughs). Why have a clean version of an album from a metal band?
Jeremy: You know there are some markets and some areas where they just don't want to put something out for people that don't want the profanity. It makes sense. It widens the record sales and everyone kinda wins.
Scottydawg: There were quite a few people involved in producing this album.
Jeremy: Well Zoltan and myself but we had Bruno, who worked with Motley Crue, and then Logan, who was the guitar player for Machinehead and Soulfly, he mixed and mastered it. So basically Zoltan and I produced it; and those guys turned it up and made it sound really good. So we're real happy.
Scottydawg: Now this may be too soon to ask but do you have any future plans on a new album?
Jeremy: Well not really yet. We're just kinda spreading the word on the first one and getting out touring as much as possible. We're touring with Korn until the end of this month and then we're staying out on our own doing the headlining club thing probably till the end of the year. So we'll take a look at where we are after that; maybe talk about getting in a room and hashing out some ideas for a new record.
Scottydawg: Right, you're currently on tour with Korn, Hellyeah, and Droid. When did the tour start?
Jeremy: We came on October 1st. We were doing some warm up shows before that and we were on Family Values this summer.
Scottydawg: What's the plan after this year?
Jeremy: We're still gonna keep touring. We'll probably take a little bit of a break at the end of the year for a few weeks. And then we'll come back out next year, probably continue out on our own if we don't get on some other larger tour. We're trying to work a few different ones now so we'll see what happens.
Scottydawg: Of all the places you've been, any certain shows or events that stick out in your mind?
Jeremy: Yeah, back on Family Values, we played Hartford, Connecticut. It's funny because half way through our set it starts pouring rain and the crowd was crazy. They were smashing each other in the pit and this guy, I guess he broke his ankle; his foot was facing the other way. It was really brutal man and they almost shut us down because they ran out of stretchers to take people out of there during the mosh pit (laughs). After the show, Zoltan grabs the video camera and ran up to the guy whose ankle was broken. He was filming him and the guy was in shock. It was really crazy and it's gonna be on the DVD if we ever get to release one so we got a lot of good footage. So that was probably the most memorable show so far.
Scottydawg: You mentioned about a DVD. Is that something in the works?
Jeremy: Yeah, I mean we've captured a lot of cool footage out there and we're editing some stuff together. It's looking great, so I hope we get to release one. There's no official date or timeframe on that but we're kinda putting it together piece by piece right now. So hopefully by mid next year we'll have a DVD coming.
Scottydawg: "The Bleeding," which is the first single off your album, broke into the top 40 on the rock radio station.
Jeremy: Yeah, it's awesome man because we're kind of a heavy band so to get any attention from rock radio at all is a blessing; and the fact that it's well received in a lot of markets, it's really great cause we're brand new. People are opening their arms and their ears, embracing us; so it's very exciting. Hopefully we'll keep staying out here even longer.
Scottydawg: Well congratulations. What did you think about the show at the Chevy Centre in Youngstown, Ohio?
Jeremy: It was a lot of fun! I've had a blast at pretty much every show. That was a good show man. The crowd received us real well and participated. It was cool man, had a great time.
Scottydawg: Well you guys kick ass! Now Ivan is going to be casted in an upcoming horror movie Bled. What's up with that?
Jeremy: That's true. Well he's a huge horror movie fan as am I, and he's perfect because he's kinda out of his mind anyway; although he's playing a monster. But like they used all of his audio tracks. He didn't have to go in and do any looping or anything. He looked crazy too; like this demon vampire character. He looked really awesome. I can't wait to see the movie. I know he's very excited about it.
Scottydawg: Any idea when it's coming out?
Jeremy: It should be in a couple months. I don't have an official date. There's probably a link on our myspace page that you can go to the web movie site and like watch the trailer. So you might wanna check that out.
Scottydawg: And your myspace is www.myspace.com/ffdp. Are any of your songs gonna be in the movie?
Jeremy: No I don't think they're gonna use any of our material for that soundtrack. I don't think there really is a soundtrack. I'm not for sure what songs they use in the movie itself.
Scottydawg: If you could tour with any band, whom would you choose?
Jeremy: Well with newer bands, I would like to tour with Killswitch Engage. I think that would be a really good show. Probably even Avenged Sevenfold. I think that would be a good bill. But as far as older bands, I'd love to tour with Slayer. Certainly Metallica, obviously who wouldn’t? We're pretty open, pretty much tour with anyone. We're just happy to be out here.
Scottydawg: What are some of your hobbies when you're not out touring?
Jeremy: Well I like to still practice my drums. I like to go to the gym a lot. I really like watching football. I'd like to coach someday if possible.
Scottydawg: Any advice you would give to local bands?
Jeremy: Absolutely. Quit immediately (laughs). No, I'm kidding. Keep doing your own stuff and stay true to yourself man. Friends come and go but if you stay with your guts, you can't go wrong.
Scottydawg: Anything that you would want your fans to know that I might not have touched base on?
Jeremy: Absolutely. I just want to mention the record again - "The Way of the Fist" in stores everywhere. Or you can buy it online. And please vote for us on Headbanger's Ball. Last week we were the pick of the week with the video "The Bleeding." If you can get online or call them and request our video, that would be much appreciated.
Scottydawg: Well, Jeremy, I really appreciate you taking the time out to call.
Jeremy: Sure, my pleasure. Thank you.
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