Metal social media was blown up earlier today by the news that a Pantera reunion is happening in 2023, with singer Phil Anselmo and bassist Rex Brown reuniting to tour Pantera songs in North America with an as-yet-unannounced guitarist and drummer, joining them in place of the late Dimebag Darell and Vinnie Paul, who died in 2004 and 2018 respectively.
While the news was received positively by some fans evidently excited at the idea of getting to see Pantera songs played live again, many have expressed hesitation at the thought of a Pantera tour without the Abbott brothers. Others were quick to point out Anselmo's white power outburst in 2016, suggesting that it has sullied Pantera's legacy.
Most of the reaction on social media has appeared to be less than enthusiastic so far, with most responses seeming to focus on the much-missed Dimebag and Vinnie Paul. "There is no Pantera without Dime and Vinnie, pack it up already," said one Twitter user emphatically. "Without Dimebag and Vinnie, what’s the fucking point?" asked another angrily. "Good for them and good luck, I guess," offered someone else, before adding: "Pantera isn’t Pantera without Dimebag and Vinnie. I’ll fight anyone on that."
One user suggested that a Pantera tribute of sorts while Vinnie Paul was still alive could have perhaps worked, but in 2022, it just doesn't work: "Pantera with Zakk [Wylde] ten years ago would've been a beautiful tribute. But no Abbott brothers doesn't make much sense."
There is no Pantera without Dime and Vinnie, pack it up already https://t.co/r4fW9P0vGIJuly 13, 2022
Pantera with Zakk 10 years ago would've been a beautiful tribute. But no Abbott brothers doesn't make much sense https://t.co/oWIR1siyHIJuly 13, 2022
Good for them and good luck, I guess. Pantera isn’t Pantera without Dimebag and Vinnie. I’ll fight anyone on that. https://t.co/t2MGd7WnfpJuly 14, 2022
Without Dimebag and Vinnie, what’s the fucking point????July 14, 2022
99% of the time I support a band continuing on after the death of a member. In the case of Pantera I do not support it. Those two were the heart and soul of the band.July 13, 2022
Not sure how I feel about this Pantera business. They were one of my favorite bands of the 90’s. Saw em’ live twice. You can’t bring that back. What’s more, I’m sorry but I don’t feel like you can have that band without the Abott brothers. Just my thoughts.July 14, 2022
It’s not Pantera. It will be loud, raucous, and heavy as diarrhea covered in nails. But it won’t be Pantera. https://t.co/HsT2Z2777PJuly 14, 2022
Not Pantera without Dimebag and Vinnie. This is one of the worst ideas for a “reunion”. https://t.co/0aGF111bXBJuly 14, 2022
There were, in fairness, some positive reactions, with some fans choosing to see the Anselmo and Brown project as more of a tribute to Pantera than a fully-fledged reunion.
"Vinnie and Dime are missed but it would still be badass to see full Pantera sets featuring Rex and Phil," Tweeted one fan. "I'm so fucking excited for Pantera to be coming back," said another. "It won't truly be Pantera without Dime and Vince but it's still gonna kick serious fuckin ass to be able to see those songs being played live again."
One user must be really excited. "I have a Pantera Tattoo above my dick," they proudly proclaimed. "I don’t think you understand how excited I am for this news."
Vinnie and Dime are missed but it would still be badass to see full Pantera sets featuring Rex and Phil. I'm excited. https://t.co/yZEdEt74fgJuly 14, 2022
I'm so fucking excited for Pantera to be coming back, it won't truly be Pantera without Dime and Vince but it's still gonna kick serious fuckin ass to be able to see those songs being played live again 🤘🤘🤘July 14, 2022
I have a Pantera Tattoo above my dick. I don’t think you understand how excited I am for this news.July 13, 2022
Plenty of Twitter users expressed their belief that Anselmo's past actions were too significant for any kind of Pantera comeback to be celebrated, with one user replying to Metal Hammer's story with: "Friendly reminder that Phil Anselmo has thrown out the nazi salute while shouting White Power." They were by no means alone in highlighting the issue.
Friendly reminder that Phil Anselmo has thrown out the nazi salute while shouting White Power https://t.co/WNCRa6IwdgJuly 14, 2022
If I, as a black guy have to explain to anyone on here why I’m not a fan of Pantera or Phil Anselmo… you are not listening to enough black voices in heavy music. Do better.July 14, 2022
Phil Anselmo quest to be the most hated man in music both professionally and personally is really hitting its stride. Unreal. To hell with this. https://t.co/FYRf4VR0ztJuly 14, 2022
Reminder that Phil Anselmo likes to throw roman salutes and shout "wh*te p*wer".Fuck Phil Anselmo and every band he's ever been in. https://t.co/ly6KtRrFEOJuly 14, 2022
Metal website MetalSucks posted a Twitter poll asking for opinions on the news, with an overwhelming percentage responding negatively; at the time of this story going to press, almost 70% of people had selected the 'Boo' option.
This Pantera “reunion” tour - yay or boo?July 13, 2022
While most prominent artists in the metal scene have seemingly held off on offering their opinions on the reunion for now, Demonstealer, frontman of Indian extreme metallers Demonic Resurrection, offered a somewhat relaxed take: "If you feel it should not be happening, just don't go for the show."
It remains to be seen who will be replacing the Abbott brothers on the Pantera shows, for which dates are also very much TBC.
Today's HOT TOPIC the PANTERA tribute tour happening in 2023 with Phil and Rex reuniting and taking it forward. What's your view on it? Mine is the same, if you feel it should not be happening, just don't go for the show.July 14, 2022