I’ve got a really fun cover comparison for you all. Pantera and Machine Head have both covered Black Sabbath’s “Hole In The Sky.” I’m curious to know what version you all think is the best. Take a listen, and let me know what you think!
As of late I’ve started listening to Pantera again. I needed to take a break from them for a while. Though if I had some aggression I needed to get out, I made sure that The Great Southern Trendkill (My favorite Pantera album) was near by. So with all this in mind, it’s time to rank all the Pantera albums from not the best to the best.
When a band replaces a singer in the band, it usually doesn’t hold a candle to what the original singer did. Sometimes though it completely reinvigorates the band and they go on to flourish. Below is a list of bands who replaced their first singers and went on to become really awesome bands. In No Particular Order!!
Pantera: Terry Glaze/Philip Anselmo
ACDC: Bon Scott/Brian Johnson (Bon Scott was great though, had he not died, who knows what would have happened)
Slipknot: Anders Colsefni/Corey Taylor
Norma Jean: Josh Scogin/Cory Brandon
Shadows Fall: Phil Labonte/Brian Fair
Black Flag: Keith Morris/Henry Rollins
In Flames: Mikael Stanne/Anders Friden
Alice In Chains: Layne Staley/ William DuVall
Black Sabbath: Ozzy Osbourne/ Ronnie James Dio
Deep Purple: Ian Gillan/ Rod Evans
Iron Maiden: Paul DiAnno/ Bruce Dickinson
Genesis: Peter Gabriel/ Phil Collins
Judas Priest: Al Atkins/Rob Halford
Anthrax: Neil Turbin/Joey Belladonna
Faith No More: Chuck Mosley/Mike Patton
I love to read biographies about bands and the people in them. One of the best things about these types of books are when they delve deep into the making of albums. While reading about that part I love putting the albums on and really invest myself in to what they were all about at that point. I recently read Rex Brown’s book about his time in Pantera. The stories were really interesting and it presented quite an interesting look into one of heavy musics most popular bands. The writing style was a bit juvenile but the content made it worth while. After reading the book I had more of an understanding why Pantera ended the way it did, and just how much Dimebag and Vinnie were immature. Rex really didn’t spare anyone. He blasted himself, Phil and the rest of the guys. One of the more interesting things was about how Dime and Vinnie’s father was collecting royalties from Pantera in the early days once they were signed to a major label. What a schmuck. This is a very fast read of a book and it packs quite a punch especially when it got to the murder of Dime and the other people at the Alrosa Villa in 2004. It’s well worth it if you are a Pantera fan. And even if you aren’t it shows a lot of how to deal with band dynamics and the do’s and don’ts. In a way this book is a great precursor to Philip’s book which should be out in 2015 and will undoubtably cause a lot of controversy I’m sure.
There are certain albums in every bands catalog that get overlooked. Most people when they talk about Pantera talk about Vulgar Display of Power and Far Beyond Driven. In 1996, amongst a lot of band tension, Pantera was able to put together their most brutal and honest album The Great Southern Trendkill. This album is known for relentless screaming throughout the album most notably on “Suicide Note Pt.II.” Also featured on the album are some of the fastest tempos and most down-tuned guitars that the band ever recorded. It also has a more experimental nature to its songs, such as the acoustic guitar and keyboard-laden “Suicide Note Pt. I”, the long breakdowns in the middle or near the end of songs like “Suicide Note Pt. II”, “Sandblasted Skin”, “Drag The Waters” and “War Nerve”. Some of the more intricate vocals that Philip Anselmo has doen can be heard on songs such as “Suicide Note Pt. II”, “The Underground In America”, “Sandblasted Skin”, “War Nerve” and “Living Through Me (Hell’s Wrath)”. A very interesting fact about the making of Trendkill was that Phil Anselmo recorded the vocals for this release in Trent Reznor’s studio in New Orleans, while the rest of the band stayed in Dallas to work on their parts. Of all the albums Pantera released, this one is by far my favorite. The lyrics go beyond just the normal anger. Topics such as hate for the media (“War Nerve”), suicide (“Suicide Note”), drug abuse (“10’s”, “Living Through Me (Hell’s Wrath)”) the end of the world (“Floods”), trends (“The Great Southern Trendkill”, “Sandblasted Skin”) and teenage taboo on life (“The Underground In America”) are all brought up.
1996 saw the release of Metallica’s Load, Sepultura’s Roots, Rage Against The Machine’s Evil Empire, and Korn’s Life Is Peachy. The Great Southern Trendkill stood out amongst all the other metal bands releases of 96. with the exception of Neurosis’s Through Silver and Blood. Do yourself a favor and take another listen to The Great Southern Trendkill and you’ll have a totally different appreciation for it!
1994 was quite a year not just for music, but also for movies. Brandon Lee’s final film The Crow was released and accompanying the film, was a tremendous soundtrack, featuring bands like Nine Inch Nails, The Cure, Stone Temple Pilots, Pantera, Rage Against The Machine and Helmet. One of the intriguing things about the album was the songs from Nine Inch Nails, Pantera, and Rollins Band were all covers. Nine Inch Nails did Joy Division’s “Dead Souls,” Pantera did Poison Idea’s “The Badge,” and Rollins Band did Suicide’s “Ghost Rider.” Also notable was the inclusion of Rage Against The Machine’s Darkness, which was actually a re-recorded b-side from their debut album. Stone Temple Pilots song “Big Empty” first appeared on the soundtrack and then was later added to their masterpiece Purple. The Cure’s song “Burn” is a wonderful song too, that radiates how great The Cure are.
The Crow is my all time favorite movie. I’ve seen it well over 100 times. There is something so perfectly dark about it and the music that is a part of it blends so well.