Pantera Announces First Four 2022 Reunion Concerts
After weeks of rumors, it's finally official: Pantera has announced four reunion shows for 2022.
The band first revealed they'll play three installments of the metal festival Knotfest, all scheduled for December. Pantera confirmed the news with a brief Twitter statement, writing, "See you at Knotfest Colombia, Chile and Brazil."
Knotfest Colombia is set for Dec. 9, with Knotfest Chile following on Dec. 11 and Knotfest Brasil on Dec. 18. Among others, Judas Priest will also appear at all three events, with Slipknot booked for the latter two.
Pantera later added another festival date. The group will play first night of the three-day Heaven & Hell Metal Fest on Dec. 2 in Toluca, Mexaco.
While not specifically tour-related, the announcement seemingly confirms what had been previously reported. On July 13, Billboard noted that singer Phil Anselmo and bassist Rex Brown had hired Artist Group International to book a tour. "We are thrilled to be working with such an iconic band and bringing their music back to fans," agent Peter Pappalardo said at the time.
A day later, a new report, also via Billboard, revealed that guitarist Zakk Wylde and Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante would join the Pantera lineup for the trek, replacing Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul who died in 2004 and 2018, respectively.
The performances will bring Pantera back to the stage for the first time in more than 20 years. The metal giant's last show took place on Aug. 26, 2001, in Yokohama, Japan. Darrell announced the group's disbandment in November 2003, attributing the breakup to Anselmo's side projects such as Down and Superjoint Ritual. "Nobody would return our calls so me and Vinnie just sat at home not knowing what the fuck was going on," the guitarist recalled to Rock Sound.
Both Anselmo and Brown have previously addressed the likelihood of playing Pantera music together once again. In April 2021, Brown told Eon Music that they continually received offers for a tribute tour: "But if you don't have the other guys in the band, it's not going to sound the same," he added. "If we were ever to do something like that, it would have to be spot-on, or I wouldn't do it. It would be a tribute."
Billboard previously noted that the band was expected to headline "a number of major festivals across North America and Europe," as well as staging headline shows.