September 3, 2014
by Bryne Yancey

When I was 12, I used my allowance to buy Pantera’s live album, Official Live: 101 Proof. The parental advisory sticker did not stop an apathetic, overworked, underpaid, mall record store employee from selling it to me, surely and correctly figuring that as a person whose adolescence was just beginning, that I’d already heard much worse just by being around other people my age. Despite growing up with a grandmother who owned a bar and a mother who worked at said bar—I quite literally grew up inside bars, is what I’m saying—and despite my innate familiarity with the Panterian aesthetic, it only very recently dawned on me that “101 Proof” is a liquor reference and that the cover art bears a striking similarity to the label of a Jack Daniels bottle.

I played 101 Proof like it was the only album I owned. Being 12, figuring out what curse words were cool to say, wandering between school and home as a person endlessly confused about everything, most of all the crappiness of Metallica’s Load and ReLoad, that thing was my Bible. And while I loved—love—the songs, Phil Anselmo’s banter between them was what kept me hitting the replay button. Vulgar, crass, nonsensical, his words were everything a shithead seventh grader wants to hear at their most formative time. I hadn’t listened to the album in several years, but upon revisiting it today, found that I still had most of his lines memorized. Now, for the cataloging benefit of the greater Internet, I present my favorites (which is all of them):

“I’m gonna tell you somethin’ right the fuck right now, we got the goddamn cameras on ya, and we’re filmin’ for the goddamn home video so I wanna see ya go fuckin’ apeshit right now, yo, Vince take it from the fuckin’ verse. Can you see 1-2-3.” (“Walk”)

“This is off the goddamn Far Beyond Driven album which I gotta say, I’m very very happy everyone bought that album and put all that commercial shit in their fuckin’ place when that record came out #1 and all that fuckin’ shit I like it.” (before “Becoming”)

“Lemme see your hands one more time up high” (“Becoming”)

“FUCK” (“5 Minutes Alone”)

“The next song goes out to everyone out there who never gave up on the fuckin’ heavy music, ever. Everybody who ignored all these weak-ass fuckin’ trends and wussy fuckin’ ideas. FUCK ‘EM ALL. ‘Cause you know why? All together now: THE TREND IS DEAD! Thank fuckin’ God. Show me somethin’.” (before “Sandblasted Skin”)

“Lemme hear some of that fuckin’ noise we were talkin’ about!” (“Sandblasted Skin”)

“You know what, I said all along and maybe you read somewhere I speak my mind and I talk about some shit and I fuckin’ tell it like it is. I dunno if you ever heard about uh, ya know, the philosophy of Pantera goes: we don’t give a flyin’ fuck about any of the others, all we care about is our own and ALL I’ve been sayin’ for fuckin’ YEARS to all these stupid fuckin’ experts, hey, you know what the experts are tellin’ you? Heavy music is dead and gone. But y’all do me a favor, y’all turn around and look at each other, turn around and look at all these fuckin’ people here, and obviously somebody’s wanting to hear something that these experts tell you you ain’t supposed to be hearing. Alright well check this out. What? [to crowd member] Our hit? This is our hit. This next song’s our hit. You won’t hear this song anywhere but in your goddamn car, at home or on this fuckin’ stage, and that’s the way it should be.” (before “Suicide Note Pt. II”)

“I wanna see you go apeshit” (“Suicide Note Pt. II”)

“That’s right…that’s fuckin’ right ya know” (“War Nerve”)

“How many of ya have been with us since the motherfuckin’ 1990 Cowboys From Hell days, huh? All you veterans out there, you show these newcomers why you keep comin’ back to see Pantera.” (before “Strength Beyond Strength”)

“You hear Rex’s bass? Answer me, YOU HEAR THE FUCKIN’ BASS? On the Cowboys From Hell album, we got a song called ‘Domination.’ We’re gonna cut that motherfucker in half, I wanna see everybody break their neck, IN THE AIR, 1-2-3!” (“Dom / Hollow”)

“That’s fuckin’ badass” (“Dom / Hollow”)

“You all know this song, sing this motherfucker” (“This Love”)

“Lemme ask you somethin’: HOW MANY-A YOU CRAZY BASTARDS GONNA COME SEE PANTERA AGAIN LET’S GO! I love it. Till the next time we see you, we love you, then you get high and you drop acid and you get laid and all that good shit.” (before “I’m Broken”)

“Thank you very fuckin’ much, we fuckin’ love ya man. See ya next time, smoke fuckin’ dope!” (after “I’m Broken”)

“Y’all better wake the fuck up and let’s go one more time around!” (“Cowboys From Hell”)

“WHAT THE FUCK DO YA WANNA HEAR??? I’ll ask you again and I want a answer from the fuckin’ front to the goddamn back ‘cause I see everybody in this fuckin’ place and you can’t hide from me. WHAT DO YA WANNA FUCKIN’ HEAR??????

It’s OK to curse. You can curse if you want to. You’re payin’ good money to curse out loud.

I love it man. Alright I know what you wanna hear—everybody take a deep breath. Deep breath. Look [inhales] take a deep breath, blow it out all over the motherfucker next to you and give ‘em all your bullshit breath, in the face [exhales]. And until we see you again—four seconds from now everything’s gonna look a little bit different—you ready Dime, you ready Rex, you ready Vince? You ready out there?” (before “Hostile”)