FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH Guitarist Denies His 'Disappearance' Was A Publicity Stunt

U.K.'s Rock Sound recently spoke with guitarist Zoltan Bathory of Los Angeles metallers FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH about his band's claim that Zoltan went "missing" for three days following a September 18 show in Las Vegas.

Although the group indicated in an online posting it had notified "the appropriate authorities" shortly after Bathory's "disappearance," the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department apparently had no record of Bathory ever having been reported missing.

Rock Sound: So what happened to you then? People reckon it was a [publicity] stunt. Was it?

Zoltan: "For a PR stunt, I could think of a million better things than 'woohoo, rock musician gets shitfaced in Vegas and disappears for few days.' I would definitely prefer to go with the 'let's shoot a cow with a bazooka' feature that we are still trying to hook up with Rock Sound. Now THAT would get some serious YouTube spins."

Rock Sound: How did it go down, where did you go and when did you realize people were worried about you?

Zoltan: "I'm not going to say the party did not get out of hand a little bit, but for fuck's sake, I felt like celebrating our new record coming out finally and my cell phone ended up taking a dip in a swimming pool somewhere so I was off the grid for a couple of days. It was a raw weekend, and a lot of stupid stuff fits in 48 hours in Vegas. When I called my manager, he was like, 'Fuck, dude, half of the country is looking for you. I thought it was just a figure of speech, [but] apparently it wasn't — it was bizarre."

Rock Sound: How annoyed/relieved were the band when you returned?

Zoltan: "I was way more annoyed than anyone else. I mean, I'm the guy who runs most of the band affairs, so I'm technically the mini-manager inside the camp, keeping things organized, communicating with, label, management, merch company, lawyers, so I work around the clock... I'm the 'responsible' one. People are creatures of habit, so they aren't used to the Zoltan who's not answering his phone for 6-8 hours especially in pre-tour crunch time, but fuuuuck, it went to Defcon 5 way too fast and became a damn circus. Now I will have to answer this question for the next two years. What happens in Vegas should stay in Vegas."

"War Is The Answer" — the sophomore album from FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH — sold 44,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 7 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD follows up FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH's 2007 debut, "The Way Of The Fist", which has sold more than 350,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

The photo of Zoltan Bathory below was taken during the September 18, 2009 show at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas (courtesy of SpyOnVegas.com and the band's MySpace page).

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