Two Major German Festivals Are Excluding Pantera From The Lineup Due to Protests Against Alleged Racism in The Past.


Two major German festivals have excluded Pantera from the line-up due to protests related to past accusations of racism.

The reformed band featuring Phil Anselmo, Rex Brown, Zakk Wilde and Charlie Benante was scheduled to perform this year at Rock Am Ring and Rock Im Park, two simultaneous festivals that take place from June 2-4 in Nurburgring and Nuremberg, respectively.

Now the organizers have released a statement saying that the band’s performance was excluded from the schedule due to the protests.

“Pantera will not be performing at Rock Im Park and Rock Am Ring 2023 as announced,” the festival said in a statement on Monday (January 23).

The statement said: “Over the past few weeks we have had many intense conversations with the artists, our partners and you, the fans of the festival, we continued to deal with criticism together and decided to remove the band from the program.”

NME has reached out to Pantera for comment.

Accusations of racism date back to 2016, when frontman Anselmo offered to leave his band Down after an incident during which he was filmed performing a Nazi salute and shouting “white power”.

Anselmo was forced to apologize after he was filmed saluting at the end of his performance at Dimebash 2016, a festival held in Hollywood in honor of his late bandmate Dimebag Darrell (pictured below).

Anselmo first called his actions a “joke” and then issued a statement saying: “Every citizen around the world has the inalienable right to live with dignity and respect without hatred or oppression. And I mean it with all my broken but guilty heart.

“It is well known that we can either learn from our mistakes or continue on the path of insensitivity and destruction. I am fully responsible for the mistakes I have made, and I can only give you my word not to commit them in the present anymore, through actions, not just words.

“My bandmates are now experiencing the consequences of my behavior, and now I also publicly apologize to them. Never in my entire life will I drag them along with me, and I privately suggested that they move on without me.”

Anselmo also described himself as “repulsive of my own actions,” saying he “understands if I’m shunned until I fall into the mud.”

He later released an apology video. In this he said, “Philip X Anselmo is here and I’m here to basically respond to all the warmth I get, which I totally deserve. I was in Dimebash, and it was very late, there was a difficult conversation between me and those who love Dime. Violent emotions flowed like a river, joked behind the scenes, what was happening on stage, and it was ugly, it was inappropriate, and anyone who knows me and my true nature knows that I don’t believe in any of this.

“I don’t want to be part of any group,” he continued, “I’m a human being, and I apologize a thousand percent to everyone who was offended by what I said, because you should have been offended by what I said.” . And I’m really sorry. I hope you will give me another chance… I love you all. Whoever knows me knows that I love you all. God bless you.”

His actions were condemned by representatives of the music world at the time, including Machine Head frontman Rob Flynn, who addressed the story in a video, calling Anselmo a “bully” and saying, “I was there and I could tell you for sure. that there was no chardonnay or pinot grigio behind the scenes. In fact, the only thing you drank, Phil Anselmo, was Becks German beer. Maybe that’s where the joke came from.”

Scott Yan of Anthrax called Anselmo’s actions “vile” shortly after the event. “Friends,” Ian wrote on his website, “hate speech. Racism. Inflammatory rhetoric. Everything is dangerous regardless of the context. I have ZERO TOLERANCE for all of this, and not speaking out against them is just as dangerous as the actions themselves.

“Philip’s actions were vile, and this should be the focus of attention, everything else is just noise. Philip has apologized, and I would like to offer him the opportunity to really show how much he loves everyone by making a donation to the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Peace, Scott.”

Among those who criticized Anselmo’s appearance at the festival were the Green Party of Germany and the Greens against Racism.

According to Stern, members of the council from the local Green Party called on the promoters of the festival, Argo Konzerte GmbH, to remove the group. Additional criticism came from the venue of the festivals — one of which (Rock Am Ring) took place where supporters of Hitler in Nazi Germany held mass rallies in the period from 1933 to 1938.

Reacting to the decision to remove Pantera, River Lerinz, a Green spokesperson, said it was “unimaginable” that Pantera would be allowed to perform at the same venue where the Nuremberg rallies took place.

“We are optimistic that Pantera is an isolated case, but in the medium and long term it will be seen as a precedent,” said Lorinz (via Music Radar). “We hope that the Democratic parties will demonstrate a unified and clear position here, too, in order to prevent anti-Semitic, racist and right-wing extremist speeches of any kind on the website from the very beginning.”


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