‘Maybe they don’t understand what sellout means’: Zoltan Bathory Addresses FFDP Being A Polarizing Band

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Five Finger Death Punch tends to get a lot of shit from the metal community and band guitarist Zoltan Bathory thinks those people might have a misconception regarding the band.

During a conversation with FaceCulture, Bathory talks about how hard the band have worked throughout their career and how the metal community may have a misunderstanding of what it means to be a sellout (this seems to imply that some folks have called FFDP “sellouts”). When the interviewer brings up to Zoltan about the band being polarizing – sharing how they think it might just be because of the band’s success and asking if Bathory agrees – this is how Bathory replies:

“I think so. It’s just what it is. In the very beginning, it gets under your skin a little bit because you don’t understand. I worked my ass off to be here. You have no much idea how much work this [has been to get here]. It didn’t just pop out of nowhere. This is 30 years in the making. I was 12 years old making my first guitar out of a coffee table because I could not t afford one. It’s a lot of work and you just do what you love doing.

“Ivan pointed this out the other day. He goes, ‘Did you notice this that any other genre if somebody gets a number one hit, they’re celebrated. In heavy metal, you’re a sellout.’ How? Maybe they don’t understand what sellout means. Because I do exactly what I wanna do. I don’t sit in a job I hate. I do exactly what I wanna do. Nobody is pressuring me to do something I don’t want to. I play exactly the music I like. So that’s actually exactly the opposite of selling out.

“So that’s one thing — people just view this as if this genre should be underground and somebody owns it. And, ‘No. This can’t be popular.’ So it’s a combination of that. A lot of misunderstanding, I guess. We came up pretty quick. I’m sure that has something to do with it. Sometimes I read, ‘Oh, a major label brought a bucket of money and…’ That clearly tells me you have no idea. You don’t know anything about the music industry if you think that’s how that works. There’s no amount of money I can give you and you’re gonna like a band. You just like it or you don’t like it. That’s it.

“And how people invest in bands also doesn’t work that way. You have to achieve some kind of success, and then you get signed because the label would see that you’re achieving some success. They aren’t investing in something that they don’t know if people are gonna like it or not; that’s not how this works. […] And then plus, our story, the first record, it was completely homemade, produced by us. We made it my living room — literally. So we were exactly the opposite of that — we achieved and earned everything.”

What do you make of Five Finger Death Punch’s success? You can check out the full interview featuring Zoltan below.

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