Year released: 1992
Label: Atco Records
Official Website: www.pantera.com
1. Mouth For War [3:57]
2. A New Level [3:58]
3. Walk [5:15]
4. Fucking Hostile [2:49]
5. This Love [6:33]
6. Rise [4:36]
7. No Good (Attack The Radical) [4:50]
8. Live In A Hole [5:00]
9. Regular People (Conceit) [5:27]
10. By Demons Be Driven [4:41]
11. Hollow [5:49]
RAWRRR!! LET'S GO OUT THERE AND HAVE A BRAWL!!! ... ... is probably what you would be thinking once you are through with this awesome classic of an album.
Yes, Pantera may have already disbanded, and have had experienced a tragedy or two, but luckily for them (and us), their music still lives on. This is one of those records that ruled then, and when you happen to stumble across it sometime in the future in your CD library or at a local CD store, you would pop it into the player and go, “Wow, their music still rules!”.
Vulgar Display Of Power was this American groove metal band's 2nd studio album, and it sure is heavy as f**k. (Sorry, that was the only word I could find to describe it :-)
Take a listen!: The heavy, yet melodic style of Pantera
Starting off by exploding into your face with the angsty “Mouth For War”, Vulgar Display Of Power grips you throughout the entire album with thorned, sonic tendrils that just refuse to allow you to pop the CD out of your player. With Pantera's signature whining guitar melodies, rap-roars of vocalist Phil Anselmo, and the heavy yet dissonantly melodic guitar riffs that punctuate every minute of their songs, this album (and largely due to Pantera's own comments) was said to have spawned the sub-genre known as groove metal. This amazing piece of work even recently attained double platinum status in 2004, and although that might in part be contributed to the band unfortunately disbanding in that same year (Tsk tsk, the practicality of CD collectors), one cannot deny that this is indeed a good album. Taking your first stroll through this angsty album, one quickly realises that this is not a walk in the park. To pop and rock fans, it would most probably be like walking fearfully through a noisy and anarchic complex teeming with sweaty, uncouth people. To metalheads however, it would be like being one of those sweaty, uncouth people. On your second stroll, it no longer becomes a stroll, it turns into a brisk walk edging close towards a fast run. The album just simple hooks you onto it from the 2nd listen onwards. On your third stroll, it has irrevocably turned into a full sprint. Switch off the computer! Throw that textbook to one side! It's time to stay in bed the whole day and rock out to a Vulgar Display Of Power!
The legendary indie quartet: From left to right – Vinnie Paul (Drums), Phil Anselmo (Vocals), Rex “Rexx Rocker” Brown (Bass Guitar), Darrell “Dimebag” Abbott (Guitar)
Surprisingly though, the album ends off with a track that is rather toned down and mellow, in comparison with the first track that is. “Hollow” showcases how the band can be musically profound people, as it is a track that simply do not bear any resemblance to the other earlier tracks. Similar to “Cemetary Gates” from Pantera's largely successful debut album, Cowboys From Hell, the track sighs incessantly in the world-weary voice of the guitar for a large part of the song, and even Phil's voice has a tinge of sadness and regret to it, which is hardly imaginable to anyone who are still on the previous tracks.
Hm, I would like to think of this as an example of how American metal bands are actually made up of thinking and feeling people too, for they are most definitely not the mindless, violent, occultic baffoons standard stereotypes make them out to be.
Oh yes, one last thing.
Fans of Japanese animations who are new to Pantera, the band, might find the name familiar. Yes, although this band shares the same name with a particular character from a particularly popular Japanese animation series, I would dare say this album of theirs is so oppugnant that they would easily win a fight with that character.
Long live metal!
(P.S. And get this album too!)
Verdict: 8.4 / 10