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Phil Anselmo Discusses New Down EP, Reveals Cover Songs May Exist in Pantera Vaults

Phil Anselmo
Liz Ramanand, Loudwire

Philip Anselmo is gearing up for the release of Down‘s upcoming ‘Down IV Part I – The Purple EP‘ on Sept. 18, and he insists that none of the members of the NOLA sludge band put any pressure on themselves regarding the release. He also shared that while the Pantera vaults have been emptied as a result of the 20th anniversary reissues of ‘Cowboys From Hell’ and ‘Vulgar Display of Power,’ he did reveal that some interesting cover songs still exist somewhere and if the right amount of digging is done, they could be unearthed.

“I put no pressure on myself for this Down record,” Anselmo told The Boston Phoenix. “I don’t think any of us did. I did what we did when we recorded the first demo. I am never the guy that will sit back and say, ‘Oh, we gotta break new ground!’ and have all these gigantic expectations. I’m the biggest f—ing pessimist in the entire world. Even when I was in Pantera, I didn’t expect a f—ing thing.”

Speaking of Pantera, Anselmo may not have expected anything, but he sure yearns for those days gone by.

“I miss the days, I long for the days, sometimes, and I miss Dimebag very, very much,” Anselmo said. That’s not new information nor is it a revelation by any means, as Anselmo has been candid and confessional in his interviews, post-Dime’s death, sharing his pain with fans and interviewers.

He says memories of the “good stuff” rise to the surface when he recalls the olden days. He said, “Especially ‘Vulgar Display of Power’ and that whole touring cycle and the change in the audience and their perception of us. When we toured ‘Cowboys From Hell,’ there was a very lukewarm if not awful response. But when you back it up with a record like ‘Vulgar Display,’ that’s when the tide did turn — rapidly, to say the f—ing least. There were some extremely educational, memorable, cherishable times in my life.” Ours, too!

While Pantera included the long-lost song ‘Piss‘ on the reissue of ‘VDOP,’ both Anselmo and drummer Vinnie Paul, who are estranged, agree on the fact that the cupboard is now bare and no “hidden” original songs exist. There are, however, covers of Van Halen and Phil Collins.

“We used to f– with all kinds of songs,” the singer said. “Obviously we did that ridiculous version of ‘Cat Scratch Fever’ for some movie soundtrack ['Detroit Rock City'], that d—face Ted Nugent. S–t dude, we would kick into Kansas and all kinds of s–t.”

He continued, “Here’s another one for ya: I never did sing on the motherf—er, that old Phil Collins [he starts singing 'I Don't Care Anymore'], we did a version of that, and it’s somewhere. But there really probably isn’t any original material left, but cover tunes and s–t like that. If there was the proper amount of digging, we could find all kinds of s–t.”

So there is hope that some “lost” Pantera material could rear its (metal)head at some point!

In case you missed it, check out Loudwire’s exclusive chat with Anselmo from earlier this year.

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