Pantera announce first European shows in 22 years

Phil Anselmo onstage
(Image credit: Miikka Skaffari/FilmMagic)

Pantera have announced their first European dates in 22 years.

The reunited band – featuring singer Phil Anselmo and bassist Rex Brown alongside Black Label Society’s Zakk Wylde on guitar and Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante – are due to play Germany’s Rock Am Ring two and Rock Im Park festivals, which take place in Nürburgring and Nürnberg, respectively from June 2-4, 2023.

No specific day or time has been announced for Pantera’s appearance at either festival. Other bands playing Rock Am Ring include Tenacious D, Evanescence, Papa Roach, Machine Gun Kelly and German punks Die Toten Hosen.

Pantera have already announced a handful of shows in South and Central America. They last played Europe in May 2000, in support of what would be their final album, Reinventing The Steel.

While no other European Pantera shows have been announced, Rock Am Ring takes place early in the festival calendar, with Download taking place shortly afterwards, from June 10-12.

Rock Am Ring poster

Pantera's reunion has attracted immense controversy within the metal scene due to the absence of the Abbott brothers, guitarist Dimebag Darrell and drummer Vinnie Paul, who died in 2004 and 2018 respectively. Vinnie Paul was famously outspoken against the idea of a Pantera comeback following his brother's death from a shooting at a Damageplan Show in Columbus, Ohio.

Many metal fans have also pointed to Phil Anselmo's racism controversies as a reason they are refusing to support the reunion. In January 2016, Anselmo screamed 'White power!' while making a Nazi salute on stage at a Dimebash event. 

In a recent interview with Guitar World, Zakk Wylde discussed stepping in for Dimebag, noting: “I am going to go in, learn the parts, be as faithful to what Dime did as possible, and just be me. 

“I'm gonna have fun with it, knowing that I am not expecting myself to sound like Dime, and no one else should either, which is how it is when I play with Ozzy or whatever else.

"No matter what I do, it's going to sound like me. I can practice all I want and stay as faithful as I want, but I am never going to escape that.”

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