Five Finger Death Punch | Megadeth | The HU | Fire From the Gods Show Review – RV Inn Amphitheater – August 19, 2022 – Ridgefield, Washington
It’s always a privilege to cover the first date of a tour. It was hot, as the Pacific Northwest sun beat down on us as we awaited show time.
The RV Inn Amphitheater always provides great accommodations and nice staff. However a bit pricey, the food, drink, and merch were plentiful.
Up first was Austin, Texas’ Fire From the Gods. As may be expected on the first day of tour, Fire From The Gods came out a little shaky. A few rough notes here and there, but they cleared it up quickly. By the second song, they had won over the fans with their unique rap metal sound. Quite vocal, lead vocalist, AJ Channer took time to warm up the crowd with his “If you can hear my voice…say Fuck Yeah.” “Fuck that racism that they are pumping out of Washington, DC…put your middle finger up!” Channer yelled to a roaring crowd. With a blend of hip-hop, rap, and metal, I found them to be an odd fit; but really, the whole package seemed an odd blend.
Next up was the mighty The HU! I’ve seen them a few times and absolutely love them. They were spot on, perfect, and precise. Playing traditional Mongolian instruments, it was apparent that much of the crowd was not familiar with this incredibly unique band. Their faces of confusion were visible until The HU broke into that spectacular primal beat. Midway through the first song, the crowd was on their feet, vibing to the music with a constant positive chatter. I heard someone behind me say, “I could listen to them all night.” I heard another say, “They sort of remind me of Rammstein.” If only their set was longer. The HU will release their second studio album,”Rumble of Thunder,” early this September. Definitely will be looking out for that.
With an interesting crowd demographic of old and young, there were clearly those there to see Megadeth, and those who were there just to see 5FDP. I had the prime spot to watch a group of twenty-something men, who were mega Five Finger Death Punch fans, jump, throw metal horns, and head bang to Megadeth. Perhaps they underestimated one of the pioneers of technical, guitar heavy, heavy metal.
Dave Mustaine, in his pristine white dress shirt and golden locks played the songs we longed to hear such as “Sweating Bullets,” “Hangar 18,” “Tornado of Souls,” “Symphony of Destruction,” “Peace Sells,” “Holy Wars,” and some newer stuff. You won’t be disappointed as Dave and crew shine with their technical, razor sharp blend of metal. Dirk Verbeuren is a fantastic drummer. Mustaine with his unique vocals and razor sharp skills is at the top of his game, and James LoMenzo fits nicely in Ellifson’s place. With 16 releases to their name, “The Sick, the Dying…and the Dead!” is scheduled to be officially released in early September.
By now the sun had set, and a cool breeze cooled our sunburned skin. After a long intro, 5FDP burst onto the stage with “Inside Out.” I’ve had the privilege of interviewing former drummer Jeremy Spencer, and a impromptu night out with a group that included vocalist Ivan Moody, so this band has always had a special place in my heart.
I must say I was shocked at the leads in each song. They were brilliant, bold, and technically fantastic, and I took note that I hadn’t remembered their being such an amazing lead guitarist in the band. But it was oddly familiar. It was Andy James!! I have no idea how I missed this news being an Andy James fan. What a fantastic addition to this beloved band.
Ivan Moody proclaimed, “Oregon, we’ve missed you,” as he burst into “Trouble.” It’s always a dilemma to reveal too much on the first night of tour. I will say that in addition to “Inside Out,” and “Trouble,” they played “Jekyll and Hyde,” “Sham Pain,” and the uber popular cover of Bad Company’s “Bad Company,” and leave the rest for future attendees to discover.
Five Finger Death Punch’s light show was brilliant, and the fans sang the songs with incredible volume. As I stated previously, the addition of Andy James took the performance to a whole new level.
At the beginning of this review, I stated that it was an odd band choice with the rap/rock Fire From The Gods, and the Mongolian masters The HU, paired with the godfathers Megadeth, and the very popular Five Finger Death Punch. Upon reflection, I think it might just be brilliant: Something for everyone!
Don’t miss this tour.