But Ex-Pantera frontman believes drummer Vinnie acts out of love – and he’s still friends with departed Down bassist Brown

Phil Anselmo

Hurt: Phil Anselmo

Update: Phil Anselmo has released a short video statement underlining the positive aspects of the comments reported below. It can be seen following the original report.

Former Pantera frontman Phil Anselmo says drummer Vinnie Paul’s refusal to communicate continues to hurt him years after the pair stopped talking.

Paul severed all links with Anselmo after his brother, guitarist Dimebag, was shot dead on stage with new band Damageplan in 2004, a year after Pantera split.

In an unfortunate coincidence an article was published the same week in which the singer bad-mouthed his former bandmates using language which Paul felt was unforgivable in the light of Dimebag’s death. The drummer also felt previous statements by the singer could have motivated the man who committed the atrocity.

Dime’s long-term girlfriend Rita Haney recently revealed she’s started talking to Anselmo again, and admitted it had caused bad blood between her and Paul.

Now the singer tells San Antonio Metal Music Examiner: “If it really is affecting someone to where they have to come out and say hateful things about me, untrue things about me, paint bullshit mystique about me – then in their heart of hearts they do care about me. That’s the point.

“Vinnie Paul’s closed-door policy when it comes to me, that’s something he’s going to have to ride around on his shoulders the rest of his fucking life. I know this: my door is always open and always has been.

“It is a little frustrating when you have a loose end and you’re trying to tighter everything up. But you can’t make everybody fucking happy all of the time. So, Vinnie Paul, he has no effect on my life at all.

“‘Good job,’ I’ll say to Vince. ‘You’ve hurt me. And you keep hurting me. Great job – where is it getting you?’

“There is a fear in him of me. That motherfucker is so fucking terrified of me. But somewhere within that terror, somewhere within this invented – and I do say ‘invented’ – scapegoat fucking slapping redneck hatred of his, there is a love bigger than any of that fucking shit, and that’s why he’s acting the way he’s acting.”

Pantera bassist Rex Brown recently left Down, to be replaced by Pat Bruders of Crowbar. But Anselmo says he remains friends with his former colleague – and the split was a mutual decision.

“There comes a time,” says the singer. “We’re not in our twenties any more. Rex has to address a lot of things in his personal life.

“Rex has two beautiful kids and he has obligations to his children and his health, to himself, to his family, and this always bigger than just being in the band.”

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