Pantera share first teaser video for controversial reunion tour

Rex Brown and Phil Anselmo onstage
Rex Brown and Phil Anselmo onstage with post-Pantera band Down in 2008 (Image credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

The first teaser video for the controversial Pantera reunion tour has been published. The enigmatic clip, which features the letters that make up the band's name being revealed as the intro to Cowboys From Hell plays, was launched across the band's social media accounts over the weekend. 

While no dates have been officially announced as yet, the proposed tour has already generated much publicity since Billboard broke the story last month. Their report revealed that original band members singer Phil Anselmo and bassist Rex Brown had signed a deal with live agency Artist Group International to undertake a reunion tour in 2023. 

It's since been revealed that the pair will be joined by guitarist Zakk Wylde and Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante, who'll fill the places of the late Abbott Brothers: guitarist Dimebag Darrell, who was murdered in 2004, and drummer Vinnie Paul, who succumbed to heart disease in 2018. 

In 2012, Paul revealed that he was opposed to the idea of any reunion tour from Pantera, who hadn't played together since 2001. "Without my brother being part of it, it just doesn't make any sense," he told MusikUniverse. "I'm not gonna trample on his legacy to make some people happy."

Two years later, he was even more forthcoming, telling EMP Rock Invasion, "It's unfortunate that people go, 'Oh, wow, man, they can get Zakk Wylde to jump up there on stage and it's Pantera again.' No, it's not, you know. It's not that simple.

"If Eddie Van Halen was to get shot in the head four times next week, would everybody be going, 'Hey, man, Zakk, go play for Van Halen. Just call it Van Halen.' You see what I'm saying? I mean, it's really selfish for people to think that, and it's stupid. It's not right at all."

The forthcoming shows are are apparently taking place with the cooperation of Dimebag and Vinnie Paul's estates, but many fans have suggested that a tour without the brothers will only serve to damage the band's legacy further, adding to the furore created by Phil Anselmo's infamous 'White Power' outburst in 2016.

Following that incident, Paul said of Anselmo, "He’s done a lot of things that tarnish the image of what Pantera was back then and what it stood for and what it was all about. And it’s sad."

Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 38 years in music industry, online for 25. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Once appeared in a Cure video dressed as a cowboy, and thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.