PHILIP ANSELMO Looks Back On PANTERA's 'Mouth For War': 'I Wrote The Main Riff'
February 19, 2022
To celebrate the 30th anniversary of PANTERA's classic sophomore major label album "Vulgar Display Of Power", The Pit recently uploaded a video interview with the band's vocalist Philip Anselmo. You can now watch the remaining two parts of the chat below.
Speaking about the LP's opening track, "Mouth For War", Anselmo said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "When we wrote 'Mouth For War', I wrote the main riff and Dimebag [PANTERA guitarist Darrell Abbott] liked it. And it sounded about a thousand times better when he played it. And he made it his own. And everybody — God — they put that song together; we put that song together. I think we knew we had written a pretty good song, that one. And I think the video for its time was unique to look at, groundbreaking, sort of, action-packed, shit like that — so very '90s-band-like."
In one of the earlier parts of the interview, Anselmo discussed his expectations for the LP at the time of its release. He said: "When 'Vulgar Display Of Power' first came out, my expectations for how it would do were none. I never had any expectations for any record we've ever done. I always felt like if I put an expectation upon it, I'd always get let down. So I just let things happen as things happened.
"Now, the reception of the record and — God — the tours, the tours," he continued. "The difference in the audience from 'Cowboys From Hell' touring cycle to 'Vulgar Display' was night and day — truly. But I was surprised at how positive the reception was and all the massive crowds and the fans. That was really the true… Well, that was when people started coming to shows — like, you had to see PANTERA."
"Vulgar Display of Power" was certified double-platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in 2004, signifying shipments of more than two million units in the U.S. since its February 1992 release.
In a 2017 interview with the WGRD radio station, former PANTERA drummer Vinnie Paul Abbott spoke about the 25th anniversary of "Vulgar Display Of Power". He said: "I never ever think about [how long it has been since the record was released]. It certainly doesn't feel like it at all, man; it feels like it was yesterday, almost. But looking back on it, it really was a groundbreaking record for heavy metal. It really set the tone for what modern-day metal bands do. They still use that record to A-B their records to — getting their guitar sounds, their drums sounds, this, that and the other. So it really was special, and I'm really proud to have been a part of it."
Vinnie passed away on June 22, 2018 at his 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.
Vinnie Paul and his brother 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.
Up until his death, Vinnie remained on non-speaking terms with Anselmo, whom the drummer indirectly blamed for the murder of Dimebag.