Five Finger Death Punch have revealed an August 19 release date for their forthcoming ninth album, AfterLife, marking the announcement with a blistering new track, IOU.
Picking up squarely where the album's first single and title track AfterLife left off, IOU boasts FFDP's trademark blend of savage riffing and catchy vocal hooks over a rhythm section of thunderous, headbang-worthy grooves.
The track's accompanying animated lyric video offers a sneak-peek into a Metaverse project the band have been working on, an “interactive virtual world” and “gamified fan club experience” developed using Unreal Engine. Check it out below.
“AfterLife was hands down my favorite record to make,” says guitarist Zoltan Bathory. “It is our ninth album so at this point, we have legions of loyal fans and our signature sound is more than established. It became its own island, our ground zero we operate from and we can always come back to.”
He adds that an “anything goes” approach to writing AfterLife resulted in an album that is “way more diverse” than their previous efforts.
“When we started this record, there was an excitement of impending musical adventures, we knew we could step away as far as we wanted to...” he continues.
“It was not planned as a concept album, but we were so hyper-focused on painting a complete picture, it somehow feels like one... We are very proud of it and are just as impatient as the fans waiting for the release. We can't wait to share it.”
AfterLife is set to be Five Finger Death Punch's first record with new guitarist Andy James, who joined following the departure of Jason Hook in October 2020. James, a known shred lord, gets his chance to shine on IOU, with a solo from the 2:43 mark packed with an unrelenting volley of rapid-fire 16th notes.
Last year, the British guitarist told Guitar World of the accelerated process of him joining FFDP, which saw him learn almost 20 songs in just a few days before playing live with the band.
“I basically got this crazy text from Zoltan saying, ‘What's your music retention like?’” James recalled. “I didn't know what he meant, so we got on the phone and he said, ‘Do you reckon you could learn a whole set?’ I was like, ‘Well, you'll have to fire it over, and I'll see.’”
“I was already a fan of Death Punch since [2011's] American Capitalist, so I knew a lot of their stuff pretty well – not to play, but to listen to. I think it was a list of 17 songs I had to familiarize myself with in two days before I flew to London to meet up with the guys. I was on the plane with my headphones on, just going through the songs in my head.”
Five Finger Death Punch are set to embark on a sprawling North America tour with Megadeth from AfterLife's release date on August 19, so fans attending are sure to hear some new cuts live.
Take a look at AfterLife's track list and cover artwork below.
- Welcome To The Circus
- Times Like These
- Roll Dem Bones
- Pick Up Behind You
- Judgment Day
- Thanks For Asking
- Blood And Tar
- All I Know
- Gold Gutter
- The End