Sunday, December 8, 2013
By Ray Routhier firstname.lastname@example.org
With heavy metal comes heavy responsibility.
Five Finger Death Punch headlines the "Trespass America" tour, which will be featured at the Oxxfest heavy metal festival Friday at Scarborough Downs.
WHO: Five Finger Death Punch, Killswitch Engage, Trivium, Pop Evil, God Forbid, Emmure, Battle Cross and nine local bands
WHEN: Gates open at 12:10 p.m. Friday
WHERE: Scarborough Downs, 331 Payne Road
HOW MUCH: $39.50; general admission. No re-entry.
INFO: (800) 745-3000; waterfrontconcerts.com
Especially when you're headlining metal festivals around the country, says guitarist Jason Hook of Five Finger Death Punch.
"There's nothing better than headlining, when you can get 12,000 people to come see you at 9 p.m. on a Tuesday night," said Hook. "But you have to make sure it's a professional presentation when you're the headliner. You've got to talk to the press, radio stations -- there's more to do."
But Hook doesn't want to make it sound as if it's all that tough, either. For instance, he was talking on the phone for this story while in a bunk on the tour bus, which was parked in Cincinnati.
"I don't like to have people hear me talk on the phone," said Hook. "One of the things I find challenging about this kind of tour is the lack of personal space. But it's just something you deal with, and you can't really complain. It's like, if you win the lottery, don't complain about paying your taxes."
Five Finger Death Punch is headlining the "Trespass America" tour, which will be featured during Maine's annual Oxxfest heavy metal festival Friday afternoon at Scarborough Downs. It will feature at least 16 bands, with music beginning around noon and scheduled to end by 10:30 p.m. at the latest.
The other national bands on the bill are Killswitch Engage, Trivium, Pop Evil, God Forbid, Emmure and Battle Cross. Local bands playing at the daylong festival include Sinfist, 13 High, Absence of the Sun, Salvo, Nobis, Rebirth to Ends, Age of End, Dead Season and Uncle Jack.
Five Finger Death Punch was formed in 2005 in Los Angeles. The band produced its debut, "The Way of the Fist," on its own. That album led to a supporting role on Korn's "Family Values Tour" and on other festivals, including the Mayhem Festival in 2008.
The band's second album, "War is the Answer," debuted at No. 7 on the Billboard 200 in 2009 and went gold. The third and latest CD, "American Capitalism," did even better, debuting at No. 3 last year and selling more than 300,000 copies.
Hook, who joined Five Finger Death Punch in 2009, is a veteran of more than two decades of hard-rock bands. He grew up in Toronto, where he "caught the KISS bug" as a youngster.
"It was pretty infectious and hard to look away from," said Hook of KISS. "I'm still a very big fan. I remember thinking, 'That looks cool. I want to do that.' "
In fact, Hook was in a band headed by former KISS guitarist Ace Frehley for "about 10 minutes."
"One of my best friends was in a band Ace was putting together, and I think my name got thrown into the hat because I was sober and Ace was trying to stay sober," said Hook. "So I flew out to L.A. to meet with him, but then I got a call from Alice Cooper, and I had to choose between the two bands."
Hook chose Cooper, playing in his band for several years and learning about theatrical hard rock first-hand from the man who practically invented the form.
"He's such a great guy and an inspiration to so many of us," said Hook.
Because even headliners have to have someone to look up to.
Staff Writer Ray Routhier can be contacted at 791-6454 or at: