EXCLUSIVE – Tee Roy Talks To 5FDP’s Jeremy Spencer [AUDIO, VIDEO]
Fresh off their “Share The Welt” tour, the cats in Five Finger Death Punch have spent no time keeping idle. After replacing bassist Matt Snell with Chris Kael last year, 5FDP has been on the road in support of their 3rd studio Album “American Capitalist”, released in October of 2011. They hit the road again in March with Soulfly, with 18 dates currently set, and more future dates possible. In honor of their show in Casper on April 12th, I had a chance to BS with drummer and founding member Jeremy Spencer. See what he has to say about overnight success, the band’s high turnover rate, Ivan Moody’s acting career, being on the road with a bunch of dudes, and more. Dates are below, as well as a sneak-peek at Ivan’s new movie, “Devil’s Carnival” (the sequel to 2006’s “REPO! The Genetic Opera“) …but first, here’s the interview:
Tee Roy: You guys just finished up your tour, did everything go well?
Jeremy: It was awesome. It was the biggest production we’ve ever it had. And most of the concerts were sold out. To walk out on stage some nights and see seven thousand people, it was a rush man. It fulfilled all of our expectations, it exceeded them.
Tee Roy: You and Zultan started the band in 2005, and now out of the whole group you only have 3 original band members. Is it just creative differences?
Jeremy: Yeah well you know, first of all I really like all of the people that are no longer with us. Anyone we ever had in this band, it was important that they were here it was right at the right time. But sometimes you just grow as people and grow in different directions. Some people’s visions are different and sometimes it just doesn’t work out. It’s basically a marriage, sometimes you’re on the same page and sometimes you’re not. We felt that we needed to make changes when we needed to make changes. And it seems to have worked out for the best. We wish all those guys the best, there’s no hard feelings. It’s just the way it goes sometimes when you’re in a band.
Tee Roy: Your first disc 2007’s Way of The Fist was huge, was that something you were prepared for?
Jeremy: Well it’s certainly everyone’s dream. But we just basically wanted to make an album we wanted to hear. That’s how we’ve treated every album. Were our worst critics, I know everyone says that. We definitely each put it through our filter and if it’s not up to par we either scrap it or fix it. No one makes a record that we’re not proud of. So we’re thrilled that it took off the way it did. It is a rarity; because of the Internet people steal so much music. So if people want to buy our record, that’s fantastic.
Tee Roy: You guys just wrapped up a tour and are getting ready to head back out in March and do it all over again. How do you guys do it?
Jeremy: Well you know this is actually a long stretch of time off. We are usually out on the road about 10 months out of the year. We just try to take care of ourselves. You know on the road, people get caught up in the debauchery of the life style, me included. But when were home we try to recharge and get ready to go back out and tear it up. It’s almost like you have to treat it like you’re an athlete. Because we are playing pretty intense music, and it’s pretty demanding, so you really have to be in the best possible physical shape.
Tee Roy: That’s a good segue into this next question. You just mentioned that you guys are always busy, but somehow Ivan found a way to be in a movie. What have you heard about Devil’s Carnival?
Jeremy: Yeah, he’s really excited about it. He says it’s really cool. I guess it’s got one of the guys from Slipknot in it. He says it was a lot of fun, he’s really loved the acting and so have I. We’ve talked about maybe doing a movie together at some point. But I’m thrilled for Ivan, he’s a natural actor, he’s great. Really born to be on the screen, his energy, he’s a natural born character. So he said he had a blast, and I can’t wait to see it.
Tee Roy: Yeah it looks pretty slick; we’re including the trailer for the movie here with our post. You mentioned that Ivan has that kind of personality. Has he displayed those kind of traits that indicate he wants to get into acting?
Jeremy: Ugh, yeah. He’s just into entertaining; it’s what he does naturally. So it’s an obvious progression and I think he will be great at it.
Tee Roy: Let’s talk about your new album, American Capitalist. A highly anticipated album even before it dropped. The hits that are rolling off this album are huge! I know you guys said you write records that you want to hear, but do you keep the fans in mind?
Jeremy: Well you know we try not to do anything that’s really left field. That is unless we’re really trying to go after something like that. We have a loyal fan base, and the band has really figured out what our “sound” is. We have a really loyal fan base. So we ask ourselves, does this sound like “Five Finger Death Punch”?
Tee Roy: One final question. I got to know what it is like living on a bus for 10 months out of the year living with nothing but dudes.
Jeremy: Well you know it has its ups and downs. But it’s natural so it’s all good. I would challenge anyone to go do their 9-5 job and then get on a bus with their coworkers and drive across the entire country. It would probably wear you out after a while. But it’s been great; I wouldn’t change any of it. We’ve made a lot of memories and a lot of great stories.
Tee Roy: Can you share one? Do you have a favorite story from the road?
Jeremy: Well I remember years ago, Ivan and I had probably been partying too much, and we decided to start throwing stuff out the windows of the bus. So we started doing that and I remember one of our drivers slammed off the breaks and came back and threatened to kick us all off the bus and go home off the tour. Not like its some big serious story, I just remember the story because we we’re so wrapped up in what we were doing.
Tee Roy: Do you guys usually get ultimatum from bus drivers? I’ve never heard of that.
Jeremy: Well we were a new band; we didn’t realize that we were actually their employer. We didn’t get that concept right out of the gate. But now it’s a lot different.
Five Finger Death Punch and Soulfly Tour Dates:
3/22 San Diego, Calif. – 4th & B (no Five Finger Death Punch)
3/23 Las Vegas, Nev. – The Joint
3/24 Pomona, Calif. – The Fox Theater
3/26 Fresno, Calif. – Rainbow Ballroom
3/27 Modesto, Calif. – Modesto Centre Plaza
3/28 Redding, Calif. – Redding Convention Center
3/29 Portland, Ore. – Hawthorne Theater (no Five Finger Death Punch)
3/30 Yakima, Wash. – Yakima Valley Sun Dome
3/31 Seattle, Wash. – Paramount Theater
4/1 Vancouver, British Columbia – Rickshaw Theatre (no Five Finger Death Punch)
4/2 Dawson Creek, British Columbia – EnCana Events Centre
4/4 Calgary, Alberta – MacEwan Hall
4/5 Edmonton, Alberta – Shaw Conference Center
4/7 Regina, Saskatchewan – Agribition
4/9 Winnipeg, Manitoba – Burton Cummings Theatre
4/11 Rapid City, S.D.– Rushmore Plaza Civic Center
4/12 Casper, Wyo. – Casper Events Center
In case you wanted to check it out, here’s a sneak peak at “The Devil’s Carnival”-