Like others are saying on here, I was completely devastated by the loss of Dimebag Darrell. The music world has lost one of the best guitar players of our time. I considered Dimebag almost a modern day Jimmy Hendrix, and I think “Vulgar Display of Power” and “Far Beyond Driven” are two of the all time greatest metal albums. I can honestly say that Dimebag was not only a great inspiration to me (he made me want to play guitar!), but also the entire metal community. Dimebag will be sorely missed.
I urge you to move on, past Pantera, and pick up Damageplan’s debut. If you’re a Pantera fan and you need something more, Pantera related, to listen to, Damageplan is exactly what the doctor ordered. To me, Damageplan is, musically, a continuation of the Pantera legacy. Many of the songs grind like Pantera’s “Far Beyond Driven”, with blowtorch riffs, great solos–although not as many– and great hand and foot work by drummer Vinny Paul. But the vocals are where Damageplan differs from Pantera. Most of the time, the vocalist, Patrick Lachman, belts out a “throaty yell/gurgle,” but he can also switch to crooning and staccatto barks. He may be more of a trendy singer than Phil Anselmo, but so what?! This C.D. rocks!
“Wake Up” has a slow beginning, which builds into a heavy breakdown and Pat’s yell of “Wake up!” It then turns to an almost galloping beat with calm growling.
“Breathing New Life” is a personal favorite. I can’t get enough of it (or any of the C.D.’s first six tracks). This song begins with a small drum intro, then explodes into hard rock. Patrick Lachman sings “Can you feel it building?” That’s an appropriate line, because this song builds and builds like many-a-great Pantera song. The chorus is a catchy breakdown which I have had running in my mind for days.
“F*** You” is almost like a Damageplan version of Pantera’s “F***ing Hostile”. The verses are fast and brutal, with blowtorch riffs and double kick drums. A great song to mosh or headbang to.
“Reborn” has verses which almost groove. The real highlight here, though, is the two wailing guitar solos contributed by equally-as-talented Zakk Wylde. I wish there were more of those guitar solos on here.
“Explode” is as heavy as you’d think a song with the title “Explode” would be. It begins with guitars that chug and churn, leading into the brutal chorus and some great guitar work by Dime.
“Save Me” fuses some melody into the typical Damageplan brutality (with big choruses and some of the aformentioned metal crooning and staccatto barks). That’s the only reason why I gave this C.D. 4 stars instead of 5, because I think the vocals could stand to be a bit more multi-faced than they are, as in this song. And a few more guitar solos would be nice, too.
“Blink of an Eye” features wah-wah guitars and “Moment of Truth” hits as hard as ever, but “Soul Bleed”–an acoustic track with more guest guitar work by Zakk Wylde– brings the C.D. full circle. Two tracks like this, one in the middle of the C.D., would have been nice.
Dimebag may be dead, but help his legacy live on. As a Pantera fan, a Dimebag fan, or even as a heavy metal fan, you owe it to him to help the legend of Dimebag Darrell live on. Pick up this C.D.