No. No it’s not. Phil and Rex getting together with Zakk Wylde and Charlie from Anthrax is a tribute… at best.
No one is denying the impact of Pantera. They did for the 90’s metalhead generation what Metallica did for teenagers a decade prior. Pantera gave kids a great tool to scare and piss their parents off with.
Pantera were THE flag bearers of the next wave of heavy metal. Then, many would argue that Pantera officially died on December 8th, 2004 When Dimebag was murdered. At that moment, the band was already split in two with both Dimebag and his brother Vinnie touring with Damage Plan and Phil doing his thing with Rex. Books came out. Words were thrown back and forth. Nasty ones. Rex had some horribly disparaging things to say about Vinnie in his book. Now, plenty of bands have gone through worse than the four metal masters from Texas and gotten back together for reunions, but that was after everyone had the chance to reconcile. That can’t happen here because Dime and Vinnie aren’t here to create that moment. So, that makes the word reunion feel empty.
Look, I was there at the Garden for the Slayer farewell tour. Phil Anselmo and the Illegals opened because of the promise that the band was treating fans to entire set of Pantera, that arena was PACKED. At 6pm on a Saturday night. Just so those of us who grew up on “Cowboys” and “Vulgar” and “Driven” could SCREAM F^%&ing one more time with a crowd. We did too. We screamed, we banged what was left of our hair despite knowing we’d be needing a chiropractor the next day, and we cried. We cried because it had been too long and because Dime and Vinnie weren’t here to see us miss them. It wasn’t Pantera. It was a TRIBUTE to Pantera. That I’m okay with Phil and Rex doing with Charlie and Zakk.
Reunion? That’s like saying you have all the pieces you need to call it Pantera. No. Dime’s guitar and Vinnie’s drums were as much of that band as Phil’s vocals and Rex’s bass thumping. No one is reuniting here. Phil and Rex have always played together and the Abbot Brothers wont be there.
To me, the word “reunion” is a slap in the face to anyone who still has their Roseland ’97 ticket stubs. What do you think?
(Image: AP Newsroom)