I confess I was taken aback by the level of… restraint in the new Five Finger Death Punch album, and not in a good way. But after listening to it a few times, “Got Your Six” has grown on me. The more melodic approach I, at first, saw as shallow is actually a refinement process.
The band’s respect for the USA army is well known so I was surprised that it took them so long to name an album after a military expression. And given its strong meaning, it’s also natural that “Got Your Six”, the opening track, is one of those songs that you immediately identify as Five Finger Death Punch’s when you first hear it. The punching beat (no pun intended), the fluid guitars… somewhat less aggressive than usual, but it still has the band’s trademark sound all over it.
“Jekyll And Hyde” is intense rather than brisk, the drums in the chorus almost like a hypnotic mantra and the “oyoyo!” a clear invitation to sing-along. It was on the next track, “Wash It All Away”, that the doubt started to bite, as I found the chorus way too much pop-ish. The main riff is quite melodic too, but in a way that will win you over immediately. The catchiness of the chorus eventually triumphs and you realize how good this song actually is, but it takes a while. Pretty much the same with “Question Everything”, where somberness and heaviness take turns as the leading role of the melody. Once again, not really an edgy song, but very well written. And the acoustic solo is stellar!
You’ll find plenty of edginess on “No Sudden Movement” though, so it’s not like they dismissed the fast lane completely. And the cranking guitars on both “Meet My Maker” and “Hell To Pay” bear that dear ol’ feisty spirit of 5FDP – not to mention “Boots And Blood”, an ode to the F word. It’s only “Ain’t My Last Dance” and the ballad “My Nemesis” that I’m still struggling with, both being somewhat too average for my taste (and the sudden change of pace in the chorus of the first doesn’t feel right to me). The other ballad, “Digging My Own Grave”, may not be exactly spectacular, but the seductiveness of its melody will linger in your ears.
“Got Your Six” is definitely Five Finger Death Punch’s more polished album so far and that’s why one might be skeptical. But give it a couple of tries and you’ll see how toning down the rage isn’t that bad after all.
By Renata “Pieni” Lino