Pantera’s Vinnie Paul explains what makes Phil Anselmo so “Fucking Hostile” on Vulgar Display of Power

Pantera-Vulgar_Display_of_Power

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, FEB. 27, 1992

By Steve Newton

Would you let somebody punch you in the face for 300 bucks? Considering that knuckle sandwiches sometimes come for free, 300 smackers might not sound too bad. Then again, it depends who’s on the other end of the fist.

And whether or not dental coverage is thrown in.

According to Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul, the guy getting slugged on the cover of the band’s new album, Vulgar Display of Power, received $300 for his troubles. Along with a nice, fat lip.

“All I know is that it’s some guy from New York City,” says Paul of the unidentified human punching-bag. “We told ’em exactly what we wanted, and from what I understand, the guy had ice packs on his face for two days, so…he’s really gettin’ popped. It’s a vulgar display of power, right there.”

As you may have already guessed, aggression plays a sizeable part in this Dallas band’s approach to music. And when singer Philip Anselmo’s angry-as-hell lyrics combine with the group’s brutal sonic onslaught, the result—as brave headbangers will discover when the band opens for Skid Row at the PNE Forum this Wednesday (March 4)—is one of the raunchiest noises either side of Laramie.

So what—to use one of the new album’s song titles—makes Anselmo so “Fucking Hostile”?

“There’s a lot of things that make him angry,” explains Paul, “but he’s not necessarily writing anger in a negative fashion. He’s angry and he’s expressing a viewpoint, but it’s also an anger that turns positive, you know what I’m sayin’?”

The heavy doses of anger and aggression on Vulgar Display were channelled together by Seattle producer Terry Date, who is currently working in Vancouver with New York thrash-funkers 24-7 Spyz. Date’s credits also include Mother Love Bone, Soundgarden, and Screaming Trees, but Paul says he’s not concerned about the oh-so-trendy Seattle Sound rubbing off on his l’il loud band from Texas.

“Texas has a great music scene, but it’s very unique and diversified. Every band that has come out of Texas that you know of—King’s X, Stevie Ray Vaughan, ZZ Top, Pantera—they all have a distinctive sound about ’em, whereas the bands from Seattle tend to sound like bands from Seattle, and bands from L.A. sound like L.A. bands.

“That’s the cool thing about Texas, is everybody kinda has their own feel for what they’re doin’.”

To hear the full audio of my 1992 interview with the late Vinnie Paul, subscribe to my Patreon page, where for $5 U.S. you can also hear my interviews with:

James Hetfield of Metallica, 1986
Rick Richards of the Georgia Satellites, 1988
Slash of Guns N’ Roses, 1994
Brian May from Queen, 1993
Dickey Betts of the Allman Brothers, 1991
Jake E. Lee of Badlands, 1992
Rickey Medlocke of Lynyrd Skynyrd, 1997
John Fogerty, 1997
Joe Perry of Aerosmith, 1987
Rick Derringer, 1999
Robin Trower, 1990
Mick Ronson, 1988
Buck Dharma of Blue Oyster Cult, 1997
Michael Schenker, 1992
Vince Neil of Mötley Crüe, 1991
Vinnie Paul of Pantera, 1992
Joan Jett, 1992
Steve Harris of Iron Maiden, 1988
Sebastian Bach of Skid Row, 1989
Rob Halford of Judas Priest, 1984
Bill Henderson of Chilliwack, 1999
Paul Rodgers, 1997
R.L. Burnside, 1999
Guthrie Govan of the Aristocrats, 2015
Mick Mars of Mötley Crüe, 1985
Carlos Santana, 2011
Walter Trout, 2003
Rudy Sarzo of Quiet Riot, 1983
Rob Hirst of Midnight Oil, 2001
Tommy Aldridge, 2001
Donald “Duck” Dunn, 1985
Mark Farner of Grand Funk, 1991
Chris Robinson of Black Crowes, 1990
Jennifer Batten, 2002
Mike Fraser, 2014
Leo Kottke, 2002
Lemmy Kilmister of Motorhead, 2002
David Gogo, 1991
Booker T. Jones, 2016
Link Wray, 1997
James Reyne, 1988
Mike Rutherford of Genesis, 1983
Buddy Guy, 1991
Country Dick Montana of the Beat Farmers, 1990
Mike Cooley of the Drive-By Truckers, 2016
Gary Rossington of Lynyrd Skynyrd, 1986
Lindsay Mitchell of Prism, 1988
Buddy Miles, 2001
Eddie Money, 1988
Tom Hamilton of Aerosmith, 1983
Gaye Delorme, 1990
Dave Murray of Iron Maiden, 1984
Graham Bonnet of Alcatrazz, 1984
Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac, 2016
Doc Neeson of Angel City, 1985
Rik Emmett of Triumph, 1985
Sonny Landreth, 2016
Tosin Abasi of Animals as Leaders, 2016
Jeff Beck, 2001
Albert King, 1990
Johnny Ramone of the Ramones, 1992
Peter Frampton, 1987
Otis Rush, 1997
Gord Downie of the Tragically Hip, 1989
Leslie West of Mountain, 2002
Steve Howe of Yes, 2017
Bruce Dickinson of Iron Maiden, 1983
Uli Jon Roth, 2016
Poison Ivy of the Cramps, 1990
Stevie Ray Vaughan, 1985
Greg Lake of ELP, 1992
Robert Plant, 1993
Malcolm Young and Brian Johnson of AC/DC, 1983
Warren Zevon, 1992
Tal Wilkenfeld, 2016
Steve Clark of Def Leppard, 1988
Roy Buchanan, 1986
Gary Moore, 1984
Ronnie Montrose, 1994
Danny Gatton, 1993
Alex Lifeson of Rush, 1992
Ann Wilson of Heart, 1985
J.J. Cale, 1990
Yngwie Malmsteen, 2014
Chris Cornell, 2008
Long John Baldry, 1985
Allan Holdsworth, 1983
Kim Mitchell, 1984
Warren Haynes of Allman Brothers, 1994
Derek Trucks, 1998
Susan Tedeschi, 1998
Joe Satriani, 2018
B.B. King, 1984
Albert Collins, 1985
Ronnie James Dio, 1985
Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath, 1984
Dick Dale, 2000
Greg Allman, 1998
Dickey Betts, 2001
…with hundreds more to come

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