Pantera Delivers A Memorably Crushing Performance Of Brutal Classics At CFG Arena


This wasn’t just another metal concert; it was a poignant moment of remembrance and celebration for the groundbreaking legacy of Pantera. With the tragic losses of guitar legend Dimebag Darrell and powerhouse drummer Vinnie Paul still weighing heavily on the hearts of fans worldwide, this performance was not just about the music—it was about honoring the indelible mark left by two titans of the genre. Stepping into the formidable shoes left vacant by Dimebag and Vinnie, respectively, were none other than the incomparable Zakk Wylde on guitar and the immensely talented Charlie Benate on drums. As the crowd roared with anticipation, it was clear that tonight’s show would be a testament to the enduring power of Pantera’s music and the unwavering loyalty of their fanbase.

Backed by the fire power of acts like SNAFU and metal titans Lamb of God, tonight at CFG Arena in Baltimore would no doubt leave a lasting impression on the metal faithful that made the pilgrimage tonight.  But more importantly, this show would give fans young and old, their chance to celebrate the legacy of Pantera in a way they never thought would be possible.

SNAFU took the stage at the intimate venue with an unapologetic energy that immediately captured the audience’s attention. Lead vocalist Scott Curnow commanded the spotlight with his powerful voice, effortlessly transitioning from guttural growls to melodic harmonies with impressive range. Guitarist and second vocalist Rian Staber unleashed a barrage of riffs that cut through the air like a chainsaw, setting the tone for a night of pure sonic mayhem.

From the bone-crushing intensity of “Soil of Blood” to the haunting atmospherics of “Closed Casket Habits,” SNAFU showcased their versatility and songwriting prowess with each relentless onslaught of sound. The band’s rendition of Metallica’s “Fight Fire with Fire” paid homage to their influences while injecting their own ferocious spin, igniting the crowd into a frenzy of headbanging and moshing. Drummer Mike Jurysta and bassist Patrick “El Toro” Saldivar anchored the rhythm section with precision and power, driving the relentless onslaught of aggression that defined SNAFU’s signature sound.

Closing out the night with the haunting ballad “No Rite (For the Less Dead),” SNAFU left an indelible mark on the audience, proving once again why they’re a force to be reckoned with in the world of heavy music.

The air crackled with anticipation as metalheads filled the CFG Arena, eager to witness Lamb of God’s powerhouse performance. As the lights dimmed and the stage was bathed in an ominous glow, vocalist Randy Blythe emerged with an electrifying presence, commanding the attention of every soul in the venue. With each guttural roar and impassioned lyric, Blythe led the charge, backed by guitarists Mark Morton and Willie Adler, whose intricate riffs sliced through the air like a razor-sharp blade. From the haunting opening notes of “Memento Mori” to the relentless assault of “Now You’ve Got Something to Die For,” Lamb of God delivered a relentless barrage of sonic fury that left the audience in awe of their sheer intensity.

As the set progressed, the energy only intensified, reaching a fever pitch during “Walk with Me in Hell” as Randy Blythe fearlessly leaped off the drum riser, soaring through the air with reckless abandon. The crowd erupted into a frenzy of headbanging and fist-pumping, feeding off the raw energy emanating from the stage. Drummer Art Cruz laid down a punishing rhythm, driving the ferocious onslaught of “Ruin” with unrelenting precision, while bassist John Campbell anchored the low end with thunderous authority.

Yet amidst the chaos and aggression, there were moments of haunting beauty, as evidenced by the haunting melodies of “Vigil,” which cast a spell over the audience with its atmospheric grace. As the set drew to a close, Lamb of God unleashed their signature anthem “Laid to Rest,” igniting a maelstrom of chaos and catharsis that engulfed the arena in a fiery blaze. The night reached its climax with the anthemic “Redneck,” a relentless onslaught of groove-laden fury that left the crowd begging for more. With sweat-soaked shirts and ringing ears, Lamb of God bid farewell to the hungry fans, leaving behind a trail of destruction and a legion of devoted fans who had borne witness to metal greatness.

The atmosphere inside CFG Arena crackled with anticipation as fans eagerly awaited the arrival of metal titans Pantera. Before the band’s explosive performance, a poignant video montage took center stage, transporting the audience back in time to Pantera’s glory days. The montage, a mesmerizing collage of archival footage featuring the band in their prime, served as a powerful reminder of the enduring legacy left behind by the late Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul. As the crowd cheered and raised their horns in tribute, the stage was set for a night of unparalleled metal mayhem.

With Zakk Wylde stepping into the formidable role of Dimebag Darrell on guitar and Charlie Benate commanding the drum kit in place of Vinnie Paul, Pantera burst onto the stage with the thunderous opening chords of “A New Level.” The energy was electric as Wylde’s fingers danced across the fretboard, channeling Dimebag’s signature aggression with precision and passion. Benate’s relentless drumming propelled the song forward with unbridled intensity, setting the tone for an unforgettable evening of metal mastery.

As the set unfolded, Pantera delivered one crushing anthem after another, leaving no stone unturned in their relentless assault on the senses. “Mouth for War” and “Becoming” reverberated through the arena with bone-shaking force, while “I’m Broken” showcased frontman Phil Anselmo’s raw vocal power and commanding stage presence. The crowd erupted into a frenzy during “5 Minutes Alone,” the air thick with swirling mosh pits and frenetic headbanging.

The emotional apex of the evening came during “Floods,” a haunting tribute to Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul that featured poignant video footage of the duo playing throughout the song. As images of the iconic pair flashed across the screen, a hush fell over the crowd, their silent reverence a testament to the profound impact of Pantera’s music.  Zakk Wylde’s performance was nothing short of incredible and inspired.  His faithful and precise execution of every note was only outshined by his soulful attack.  A performance that probably had the man himself looking down and saying, “Hell ya brotha!”.

“Walk” ignited the arena with explosive pyrotechnics, the stage bathed in a fiery glow as the other band members joined Anselmo in singing backup vocals, their voices merging with the thunderous roar of the crowd. Bassist Rex Brown kicked off the crushing medley of “Domination” and “Hollow” showcased Pantera’s technical prowess and unrelenting ferocity, while “Cowboys from Hell” brought the set to a thunderous climax, leaving the audience clamoring for more.

For the encore, Anselmo had spotted a fan in the front row that had a striking resemblance to someone we all know.  Phil began to say “I know some people might believe in reincarnation.  But it could be very possible that there is a young Dimebag right here in the front row.  When I first met Dime, his lid was exactly that length.”.  And after a short story of smoking with the young guitar legend, Phil asks that question we’d all kill to have asked “You wanna come up here and jam with us?”.  The band brought the lucky fan named Hunter from the crowd onstage to help sing “Fucking Hostile,” the ultimate display of metal camaraderie and solidarity. As the final notes rang out and the crowd erupted into deafening applause, it was clear that Pantera’s legacy would live on, their music continuing to inspire and unite fans around the world for generations to come.

As the echoes of Pantera’s final chord reverberated through the hallowed halls of CFG Arena, a palpable sense of reverence lingered in the air. With their blistering performance, Zakk Wylde, Charlie Benate, Phil Anselmo and Rex Brown paid homage to the timeless legacy of Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul, delivering a show that was equal parts homage and celebration. Through the relentless onslaught of bone-crushing riffs, thunderous rhythms, and raw, unfiltered emotion, Pantera’s music transcended mere entertainment, leaving an indelible mark on all who bore witness to their electrifying performance. As the crowd dispersed, the memories of this unforgettable night lingered, a testament to the enduring power of metal’s most iconic pioneers. Dimebag Darrell and brother Vinnie Paul may be jamming on the great stage in the sky, but their spirit lives on, immortalized in the hearts of fans who will carry their legacy forward for years to come.