Thursday, November 14, 2013

Five Finger Death Punch - The Wrong Side of Heaven And The Righteous Side of Hell - Volume 2 (2013)

Three months have gone since the first volume of this double album was released, but the time has finally come for the hard hitting quintet from LA to reveal the second half of "The Wrong Side of Heaven And The Righteous Side of Hell" (I still think that the title is way too long). So what have changed since? For starters, there are no guest artist in this second volume, only Ivan Moody, Zoltan Bathory and the rest of the band. We also have a new color palette on the cover and no questionable covers of any rap songs (only a cover of a traditional folk song). So it looks pretty good from the start, but with the strong song line-up from the first album in mind, it would be obvious that this album had to knock it out of the park to triumph over its predecessor.

Musically speaking, there is not much that separates the two album apart from each other. We got fast and catchy power songs, some slower and more delicate tunes, but sadly no ultra heavy song that has only one goal, to crush your brain into smithereens. Now, I understand why the band made these albums similar to each other, but I would have appreciated it if they tried to make two different albums that would have shown the band's diversity. The only real difference I see between the albums is that it feels like Ivan Moody is not as angry in this album as he was in volume 1. If that is supposed to represent the albums as a "good" and a "evil" album is for you to figure out.

One thing that makes this volume superior compared to its predecessor is that it is more even in its performance. There is no real shit song to be found here, but there is also no real masterpiece here either. The best picks from this album is the fast crunching "Wrecking Ball", the fast starter "Here To Die", the beautiful "Battle Born" and the nicely paced "Cradle To Grave". This evenness brings however a big flaw to this album, and that is that it does not take much time before you get tired at the album. That is the main reason why I believe that the band should have put in either "I.M.Sin" or "Dot Your Eyes" from the last album to give this album some much needed variation.

Then we also have that cover of the traditional American folk song "House of The Rising Sun", a song that has been covered several times in the past by The Animals, Dolly Parton and others. Compared to the horrible cover of "Mama Said Knock You Out" on the last album, this is at least 50 times better. 5FDP really made this song their own with the blasting double bass and the smooth riffing. The only problem is that most of the younger audience will probably think that this is a 5FDP original, something that has already happened with their cover of "Bad Company".

In the end, I think that the two volumes are good, but that the first volume is the superior one. The first volume had more power and more of a personality while the second volume was more even in its performance, but it also has a shorter life span. Both albums have their strengths and weaknesses, but even if they are two good individual albums, I would have liked it more if the band had made one big album with the great songs and left some good songs on hold so they could be included in a future album. Anyway, both "The Wrong Side of Heaven And The Righteous Side of Hell" albums are worthy a check for fans of both angry/powerful metal and more commercially approached rock. But for the next album, please keep the title at 20 characters maximum.

Songs worthy of recognition: Wrecking Ball, Battle Born, Here To Die

Rating: 7/10 Weights Beneath My Sin

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