FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH Singer: ROB HALFORD Collaboration Is 'Most Surreal Moment Of My Career'

Tom Murphy of the Denver Westword recently conducted an interview with vocalist Ivan Moody of Las Vegas metallers FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Denver Westword: This year you're putting out a double album?

Ivan: It is a double album. Originally one of them was going to be called "The Wrong Side Of Heaven", and the second album was going to be called "The Righteous Side Of Hell". But then we sat back and thought that in this day and age that 25, 26 songs is a lot to digest. I get a new CD, and it takes me a month just to get into the entire thing, where I start getting acclimated to it, so to speak. It seemed the more intelligent move was just to stagger the two. The other part of it is that when we went to the table initially, we looked at the CD itself in its entirety, and a lot of the time you grab the twelve best tracks and throw the rest out, or you shelve them for later use or whatever. We sat there and listened to it, and went, "You know what? We don't hear anything on this that we're not proud of. So we have a choice to shelve it and put out a second album a couple of years from now, or release it all together." It seemed like a more rational idea just to get it all out on the table now. I'm so proud of it. It encompasses everything we've done as a band up to this point. I'm really stoked on it.

Denver Westword: You have some interesting guests on this record, like Max Cavalera (SOULFLY, SEPULTURA) and Rob Halford (JUDAS PRIEST).

Ivan: Can you believe that? Jamey Jasta (HATEBREED) and Max Cavalera, we've toured with countless times. Really good friends. And everybody that knows me knows that I'm a huge SEPULTURA and SOULFLY fan. So that was just a no-brainer. I asked Max, and he was so happy to try something on this. The funny thing is that when he sent it back to me, he sang his parts in Portuguese and nobody told me that so I'm sitting the studio and I'm listening back to the track and I ask, "Did he change the fucking lyrics? Did he not like the song?" Zoltan [Bathory] was sitting next to me, and he says, "Dumbass, it's in Portuguese." And I was like, "Ohh! That's great." The Rob Halford thing is the most surreal moment of my entire career. When we approached him, at first, we heard back that he was too busy doing the new JUDAS PRIEST album. And about a week later, he got the song and sat back and listened to it and called us directly and said, "I'm not only going to do the song, I'm going to fly to Vegas and do it with you in the studio." My jaw hit the floor so fucking fast. I thought it was a joke. Later, I walked into the studio, and there he is, the metal god himself, singing one of the FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH songs. It was such a moment. If you'd told me twenty years ago that was going to happen...it was fantastic. We even got Maria Brink from IN THIS MOMENT. We even got Tech N9ne. It's really well-rounded, and I'm proud of it.

Denver Westword: Oh, yeah, you do that cover of LL Cool J's "Mama Said Knock You Out". That's brilliant.

Ivan: Yeah, it's kind of tongue-in-cheek. You know, FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH doing "Mama Said Knock You Out". It was just really funny for us. Zoltan came to the table and said, "You know what, dude, I've got an idea for a cover song." Again, when he said it, I thought he was kidding. He sat down and he and Jeremy [Spencer] wrote the song out, and I came back into the studio, and I was so blown away by it. And I was like, "Do you know what's really going to piss people off?" If you think about it, back in the '90s, it was [acceptable] to do the rap-rock thing. [So many] bands were doing it, from LIMP BIZKIT to KORN, FAITH NO MORE and so on and so forth. Nowadays it's almost sacrilege. Immediately, I'm like, "This is going to piss so many people off. Let's get Tech N9ne to come in here." Because that guy's an underground hero. He came in, and he was fucking fantastic.

Read the entire interview from Denver Westword.

"Lift Me Up" (studio version) lyric video:

"Lift Me Up" performance at Revolver Golden Gods:

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