Five Finger Hit and Miss

Lindsay Lillig

The heavy metal band Five Finger Death Punch recently released the first volume of its fourth studio album, entitled “The Wrong Side of Heaven and the Righteous Side of Hell.” The second volume will be released later this month, but does not have many expectations to live up to. Five Finger Death Punch could have composed far better music than the 14 tracks of volume one.

The first single from the album is the song “Lift Me Up.” Listeners may recognize this song even if they have not heard it because it sounds reminiscent of “Under and Over It” from the band’s last album, “American Capitalist.” The rhythm behind the lyrics is different, but the intro and music of the two songs are overall the same. Even the choruses are practically indistinguishable. The lyrics are the only aspects to clearly discern the two. “Lift me up above the flames and the ashes, lift me up and help me to fly away,” versus “I’ll take my sanity, you take the fame. I’m under and over it all.”

One noteworthy track on the album is “Wrong Side of Heaven.” It is reminiscent of “Remember Everything,” but not in an annoying, identical sense like the album’s first track. Songs with lead singer Ivan Moody singing in his natural, gruff bass tone produce the best Death Punch sound. Moody can be considered one of the best screamers in the metal genre today, but  the contrast of his voice separates Death Punch from run-of-the-mill hard rock bands.

The six tracks that follow “Wrong Side of Heaven” are a disappointment. Each song sounds like the band was riffing in the garage or ranting in the recording studio. They consist of heavy, repetitive guitar phrases and Moody shouting aimless lyrics.

One track is entitled “Burn MF” and another “I.M.Sin.” Death Punch has established itself as too strong of a musical group to produce such nonsensical content as the majority of its album.

The final track, “Diary of a Deadman,” takes listeners back to the sound of the band’s second album. Moody somberly serenades listeners for the duration of the song. “I still feel so much hate inside of me, seems like you were just waiting for me to fail. I’m sorry I can’t forgive you, do you blame me?” Every song on the album needs this intensity.

The second volume will be released on Nov. 19. Perhaps Five Finger Death Punch is saving the best for last. This album is clearly the wrong side. Hopefully the right side is yet to come.