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Metal - Released June 22, 2018 | Dynamo Concerts

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Metal - Released April 20, 2018 | Dynamo Concerts

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Metal - Released April 20, 2018 | Dynamo Concerts

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Metal - Released October 21, 2016 | Rhino Atlantic

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Metal - Released October 21, 2016 | Rhino - Elektra

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Far Beyond Driven may have been Pantera's fastest selling album upon release, but it's hardly their best. In fact, although it shot straight to the number one spot on the Billboard sales chart in its first week (arguably the most extreme album ever to do so), this incredible feat doesn't so much reflect its own qualities as those of its predecessor, 1992's Vulgar Display of Power. A true landmark by any definition, Vulgar Display had seen the Texan quartet quite literally reinventing the heavy metal wheel in ways not seen since Metallica's rise to fame in the mid-'80s. But when the time came to follow it up, the members of Pantera seemed unsure about how they could possibly top it, so they decided to try and out-heavy themselves, resulting in a less cohesive record which often sacrificed songwriting for outright aggression. Guitarist Dimebag Darrell (recently re-baptized from the far more glam Diamond Darrell) took it upon himself to conjure the heaviest guitar tones imaginable, turning up the volume and dissonance to sometimes painful thresholds with his massive, grinding riffs. As a result, songs like "Becoming," "Shedding Skin," and the particularly vicious "Slaughtered" still stand head and shoulders above most of the heavy metal competition, but only die-hard fans may be able to withstand their systematic sensory bludgeoning long enough to get to the hooks hidden underneath. Indeed, except for wisely chosen first single "I'm Broken," the rest of the material (and especially over-long tracks like "5 Minutes Alone" and "25 Years") generally lacks the iron-fisted discipline and controlled power captured on the band's previous triumphs. Worst of all is probably "Good Friends and a Bottle of Pills," which wanders aimlessly in formless feedback and is topped with vocalist Phil Anselmo in gratuitous, stream-of-consciousness mode -- a sketchy proposition at the best of times. In the end, it's probably the band's need to justifying their faithful cover version of Black Sabbath's gentle "Planet Caravan" in the album's liner notes that sheds the most light on their embattled frame of mind at the time. With or without this evidence, however, the bottom line is that Far Beyond Driven doesn't match the hype -- but it sure proved its weight in platinum at the bank. ~ Eduardo Rivadavia
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Metal - Released October 21, 2016 | Rhino - Elektra

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Official Live: 101 Proof hits most, but not quite all, of the high points of Pantera's career ("Psycho Holiday" and "Mouth for War" are two notable omissions), drawing most heavily from Vulgar Display of Power and Far Beyond Driven. There are also two new studio tracks tacked on to the end to entice the more casual fan who might find a live album redundant; however, Pantera's devoted fans will pick it up anyway, and they won't be disappointed. Pantera packs just as much of a wallop live as in the studio, even if the versions here aren't substantially different (other than a medley of "Domination" and "Hollow"). One warning: Phil Anselmo's amazing streams of nonstop vulgarities in between songs will appeal more to the adolescent fan who finds them a liberating way to vent frustration; others may find them predictable and approaching idiotic. But that shouldn't detract from the music and performances, which are uniformly strong, as fans would expect. ~ Steve Huey
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Metal - Released October 21, 2016 | Rhino Atlantic

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Metal - Released October 21, 2016 | Rhino - Elektra

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Where The Great Southern Trendkill experimented with slower, moodier pieces, Reinventing the Steel finds Pantera sticking to the pulverizing basics of their sound, with the first down-tempo, nondistorted guitar part appearing on the next-to-last track, "It Makes Them Disappear," and vanishing about 15 seconds into the song. In the tradition of the group's best albums, Reinventing the Steel is a nonstop assault on the senses, offering no respite from the intensity until the album has stopped playing. Yet somehow, it comes off as a cut below their best albums; perhaps it's that the band's sound lacks the sense of freshness that sparked Cowboys From Hell, Vulgar Display of Power, and Far Beyond Driven, or perhaps it's simply good in a very predictable way (contrary to its title). Yet even if Pantera is firmly entrenched in a signature sound, it's a distinctive, highly effective signature sound that most of the band's fans don't want to hear changed; plus, Dimebag Darrell is still one of the most inventive guitar players in heavy metal. The bottom line is that the way you feel about Reinventing the Steel will likely depend on whether you object to more of the same; if not, then the lean focus of its attack -- the most concise, actually, since Vulgar Display -- will make it more than worthwhile. ~ Steve Huey
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Metal - Released October 21, 2016 | Rhino Atlantic

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Metal - Released April 17, 2010 | Rhino Atlantic

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One of the most influential heavy metal albums of the 1990s, Vulgar Display of Power is just what is says: a raw, pulverizing, insanely intense depiction of naked rage and hostility that drains its listeners and pounds them into submission. Even the "ballads," "This Love" and "Hollow," have thunderingly loud, aggressive chorus sections. Preaching power through strength and integrity, Phil Anselmo discards any further attempts at singing in favor of a militaristic bark and an unhinged roar, while the crystal-clear production sets Diamond Darrell's pummeling riffs against a rhythmic backdrop so thunderously supportive that Darrell often solos without underlying rhythm guitar parts. The album again follows Cowboys from Hell's strategy of stacking the best songs at the beginning and letting their momentum carry the listener through the rest, but the riffs and sonic textures are more consistently interesting this time around. Pantera's thick-sounding, post-hardcore power metal and outraged, testosterone-drenched intensity would help pave the way for alternative metal acts like Korn and Tool; Vulgar Display of Power is the best distillation of those virtues. ~ Steve Huey
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Hard Rock - Released December 9, 2015 | Doxy Records

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Hard Rock - Released December 9, 2015 | Doxy Records

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Metal - Released September 11, 2015 | Gonzo

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Metal - Released March 24, 2014 | Rhino Atlantic

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Metal - Released March 24, 2014 | Rhino Atlantic