Rex Brown Says Reunited Pantera “Is No Tribute Band”, “You’ll See This Band Go And Go And Go And Go”


Given their convoluted past, the current incarnation of Pantera remains a heated topic of discussion. The legendary groove metal band was reunited in 2022, in the wake of the passing of the band’s brotherly duo of guitar hero “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott and drummer Vinnie Paul Abbott.

The multi-platinum Texan outfit’s original run ended in 2003 as infighting amidst warring camps in the group boiled over. A controversial interview with vocalist Philip Anselmo conducted in 2004, fanned the flames of that divide, with Dimebag eventually being shot onstage that year, along with several others, by a mentally ill fan of the band amid a Damageplan concert.

While the idea of Pantera reuniting continually cropped up in the years that followed with Dimebag‘s friend Zakk Wylde in his place, Vinnie Paul remained adamant against the idea, frequently swatting down any talk or questions on the matter.

As confirmed later by the band’s bassist/vocalist Rex Brown, Vinnie Paul in part blamed Anselmo‘s comments and actions for indirectly causing Dimebag‘s murder. As such, Vinnie Paul remained against the idea of reuniting the band through to his 2018 passing.

Anselmo and Brown would go on to reunite the outfit in 2022, with Wylde assuming the guitar duties and Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante sitting behind the kit. That revised lineup has continued to tour since with the expressed blessings of the estates of both of the late Abbott brothers.

Initial marketing around the reunion came with the slogan of ‘For the brothers. For the fans. For legacy.’ Imagery of the fallen brothers also remains a fixture throughout the band’s live shows. Wylde would initially dub the band “a Pantera celebration“. But now over a year or so in, with talks a potential live album, the intent behind the band seems to have solidified.

In a newly published interview with Rolling Stone Australia, Brown weighed in on the decision to continue the band without the Abbott brothers and why they continue to honor them, offering, “Two of our beloved brothers that just aren’t here anymore man, that’s life, you know? They’re just not with us man, that’s just fate, it’s the way the ball rolls, dude.”

Brown would later shoot down the idea that the current lineup are a ‘tribute band’ or a cash-in, offering:

“It’s just one of those things that is sacred to us, you know? This is no tribute band – Philip and I get to play these songs of ours that we haven’t played in 23 years. And to be able to do that and connect with the enormity of what’s happened is just extraordinarily fucking insane, you know?”

As for the future of the group, it seems there’s no expiry date in sight, as Brown relayed:

“You’ll see this band go and go and go and go. There’ll be a bunch of new songs in the set in 2025, maybe even this year… I ain’t givin’ it away.”

“The set list we’re doing now, goddamn, it’s powerful, man. And I hate tootin’ my own horn, dude, you know… we’re just happy to be here, man, it’s a privilege to be here. I’m honoured and I am grateful to be here, and that’s all I gotta say, man.”

Pantera have the following shows booked at the moment:

05/18 Columbus, OH – Sonic Temple Art + Music Festival
06/15 Donington Park, UK – Download Festival
07/06 Barcelona, SPA – Barcelona Rock Fest
08/02 Foxborough, MA – Gillette Stadium (feat. Metallica & Mammoth WVH)
08/09 Chicago, IL – Soldier Field (feat. Metallica & Mammoth WVH)
08/16 Minneapolis, MN – U.S. Bank Stadium (feat. Metallica & Mammoth WVH)
08/23 Edmonton, AB – Commonwealth Stadium (feat. Metallica & Mammoth WVH)
08/30 Seattle, WA – Lumen Field (feat. Metallica & Mammoth WVH)
10/10-13 Sacramento, CA – Aftershock Festival

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