Phil Anselmo and Rex Brown have been noticeably absent from speaking to the press ever since it was announced that the mighty Pantera would be returning to the live stage with Charlie Benante and Zakk Wylde taking over the axe and drum throne duties. Before the reunion tour news broke, Phil himself spoke to us back in February of this year about his thoughts on what Dime and Vince would want for Pantera’s legacy. He told us:
“Dimebag and Vince always wanted this band to be a legacy band, to be massive… to be our own conduit to success, simply put. I think Dime and Vince, I know Dime and Vince would want the legacy and the name of Pantera to go on and on and on and in everybody’s damn face. I know that for sure. Absa-fucking-utely dude, that would be their biggest dream.”
However, the surviving members of Pantera have not made any official statements about the reunion (or really, spoken publicly at all) beyond posting an Instagram teaser and unveiling what we believe and hope are just the first of many tour dates (in December they’ll be playing Knotfest: South America dates in Brazil, Chile and Columbia).
So, this weekend’s Down set at the Blue Ridge Rock Festival was significant as it appears to be the first time that Phil has spoken about the beloved Abbott Brothers publicly since the reunion news broke.
Here’s what he had to say, and you can watch it for yourself below as well: “Absolutely awesome. Absolutely incredible, thank y’all so much. What do yo say? Playing under a full moon. I’ll tell you what we can do, and will do. This next song goes out to Dimebag and Vince, man. I want y’all to throw down. If you know these motherfucking lyrics, sing this shit. This is one called Lifer. Let’s go!”
While we’ve set the video to start during his brief tribute, we highly recommend that you start at the beginning and watch Down smoke (pun intended) through one of our favorite songs of all time here at The Pit, ‘Hail the Leaf’.
Enjoy the videos, and hopefully we’ll get some North American Pantera dates to share with you all in the not so far off future.