FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH drummer Jeremy Spencer was recently interviewed by Metal Wani. The full conversation can be streamed below. A few excerpts follow (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On the impending release of new album “And Justice For None”, which was delayed for more than a year due to a legal dispute:
Jeremy: “It’s a good feeling. It’s been so long – we initially completed this record at the end of 2016 and turned it in, and then we were in a lawsuit with our record label which kind of tied things up for a while. We had to get that all ironed out. Then we ended up recording some more songs and swapping some things out and changing it around. It’s been done for a while. We’re happy with it, but once you’ve been sitting on it forever, you’re just really chomping at the bit to get it released so everyone else can hear it. We’re finally at that point, so we’re really excited. I think the record is a pretty solid effort. I’m happy with the way it turned out. I’m just finally glad to release the damn thing. It’s been forever, it seems like, but we’re finally here, and now people finally get to check it out.”
On the album’s title:
Jeremy: “For us, ‘And Justice For None’, the meaning of that is we were tangled up in this lawsuit with our record label. It was very time-consuming and very stressful and very expensive, and it seemed like at the end of it, it really didn’t make any sense as to even why we went through all of that, because nothing really happened. It just delayed everything, and it was like, justice was not served for anyone. That’s how that came about — justice for none. It didn’t make any sense why we went through that crap, but I’m glad to have it behind us. Going through lawsuits, it’s no joke. It’s a stressful thing. It’s tough, so I’m glad it’s over.”
On the group’s writing process:
Jeremy: “We pretty much always do the same process. Somebody will start a riff idea — they’ll have some kind of musical idea, and then we’ll hash it out. I’ll get together with Jason [Hook, guitar] or Zoltan [Bathory, guitar] and we’ll hash out ideas. Once we get a music bed that we are comfortable with and that we all agree is rocking enough, Ivan [Moody, vocals] usually comes in last and solves the puzzle with his lyrics. He’s always been real good at doing that. I always feel for him, because he has to tell 10 to 12 different stories on a record. It’s easier to make up music, but to come up with unique stories, that’s not always easy, but I think he did a good job [on ‘And Justice For None’]. He’s always pretty honest about what he’s feeling at the time, and you can usually feel it in his lyrics. I think he came through in fine fashion.”
On trying to write different types of songs:
Jeremy: “We don’t want to put 10 songs that sound exactly the same. You kind of want to space out a record to where it has a good flow and a good pace to it. We always have some slow songs. We write whatever we’re feeling, and usually, one or two of them are slower. Then there are some really aggressive ones too. You want to keep it exciting — you don’t want to bore people and put, like, three or four acoustic things right in a row. You just want to space it out and pace it where it keeps it in a good flow and a good journey for the listener.”
On whether the group tried to experiment more on the new album:
Jeremy: “It’s our seventh record. We usually just write what we feel at the time, and some of the stuff was coming out with a slightly different flavor. We definitely sound like what we sound like after six records, but we’re always trying to push ourselves and do things that are a little beyond what we’ve done before, or a little different without swaying too far off course. I think we tapped upon a few things on this record that are different flavors that are cool. It’s stimulating for us, because we’re always trying to push ourselves as musicians and do things that are fun to come up with, but it’s cool for the listener too, especially for fans that have been there since the very beginning. They don’t want to hear the exact same record either — it’s boring. We’re always pushing ourselves, and I think we achieved a good balance of old DEATH PUNCH and some slightly new flavors. I think they’re going to definitely get what they are looking for as far as the meat and potatoes of what FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH does, but there’s also some different flavors. I think they’re going to be surprised and stimulated with some of the new styles that they’re hearing. That’s all you can ask for — you want to keep them excited and wanting to hear new things and wanting to go on the journey with you musically. I’m happy with the way it turned out, and the direction that it went.”
On the band’s camaraderie:
Jeremy: “The past few years have been pretty trying. There’s definitely no denying that. There’s been internal things; there’s been lawsuits; there’s been all kinds of stuff. But at the end of the day, we’re brothers that are there for one another, and we’re going to fight the battle together. We’re going to do whatever it takes to make this thing plow forward and do the best we can. We love making music and we love touring. Some of the other stuff that gets in the way makes it tough, but whether one of us or all of us are having a problem, at the end of the day, we’re going to unite as brothers and fight our way through that battle.”
“And Justice For None” was released on Friday, May 18.
In May 2016, FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH announced it had signed a new North American recording deal with the BMG-owned rock label Rise Records.
FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH is hitting a handful of festivals and playing around a dozen dates with SHINEDOWN this spring. The band will then kick off a co-headlining run with BREAKING BENJAMIN on July 16 in Seattle.