PANTERA performed earlier today (Sunday, December 11) at Knotfest Chile in Santiago without bassist Rex Brown. Filling in for him was CATTLE DECAPITATION bassist Derek Engemann, who also plays with PANTERAsinger Philip Anselmo in both PHILIP H. ANSELMO & THE ILLEGALS and SCOUR.
In an official statement, the Knotfest Chile organizers blamed Brown‘s absence on his “health problems.” However, local radio station Futuroreported that Brown missed the Santiago gig after contracting COVID-19. Rexreportedly flew from Bogotá, Colombia, where PANTERA performed at Knotfest Colombia on Friday (December 9),back home to the United States to quarantine, thereby missing the remainder of the PANTERA shows in South America.
Joining surviving members Brown and Anselmo in PANTERA‘s reformed lineup are guitarist Zakk Wylde (OZZY OSBOURNE, BLACK LABEL SOCIETY) and drummer Charlie Benante (ANTHRAX).
Benante shared a short video of the Santiago concert and included the following message: “#chile was on fire!!!! We missed Rex tonight , get better buddy! Damn it was a hot one”.
The band will headline a number of major festivals across North America and Europe and stage some of their own headline concerts. They will also support METALLICA on a massive North American stadium tour in 2023 and 2024.
According to Billboard, the lineup has been given a green light by the estates of the band’s founders, drummer Vincent “Vinnie Paul” Abbott and guitarist “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott, as well as Brown, who last year said Wylde wouldn’t tour with PANTERA if a reunion were to happen. It’s unclear what changed his mind.
Up until his passing, Vinnie remained on non-speaking terms with Anselmo, whom the drummer indirectly blamed for Dimebag‘s death.
Vinnie Paul and Dimebag co-founded PANTERA. When PANTERA broke up in 2003, they formed DAMAGEPLAN. On December 8, 2004, while performing with DAMAGEPLAN at the Alrosa Villa in Columbus, Ohio, Dimebag was shot and killed onstage by a troubled schizophrenic who believed that the members of PANTERA were stealing his thoughts.
Vinnie passed away on June 22, 2018 at his other home in Las Vegas at the age of 54. He died of dilated cardiomyopathy, an enlarged heart, as well as severe coronary artery disease. His death was the result of chronic weakening of the heart muscle — basically meaning his heart couldn’t pump blood as well as a healthy heart.