Kittie’s Morgan Lander Has a Way More Level-Headed Take on the Pantera Tribute Than You

Ever since it was announced last year, the Pantera reunion/tribute act has generated a massive shitstorm within the metal community. Sweaty fans on both sides of the conversation have been screaming about whether it’s actually Pantera or not and if it properly respects Dime and Vinnie Paul’s legacy like some greasy Ship of Theseus debate.

And while even many metal musicians have weighed in on the whole debate, with most being in favor of the whole thing happening, Kittie‘s Morgan Lander shared her more level-headed stance on modern Pantera while speaking with Anne Erickson of Audio Ink Radio (transcribed by Blabbermouth).

Though she admitted that she was a huge fan of the band back in the day and actually stood at the side of the stage during Pantera’s final show in Japan, she said she was torn as to whether this was actually Pantera since the Abbott brothers were no longer with us. Still, she was excited that people would get the opportunity to hear those songs live again.

“When I heard about it, I wasn’t… I don’t know… I wasn’t mad about it. I feel like it is weird, because I feel like the heart and soul of that band were the Abbott brothers. And everything about their playing… Not like I could ever compare myself to any of them, but I understand what it’s like to have a sibling in a band, and you play together for so long that it’s, like, you connect on a different level. When they played, they had a certain swagger and they connected on a certain level together. And that’s just something that comes with time and practice and all of those things, but also that bond, of being a sibling. And I know they were very close, obviously.

“I was really excited to see it. We played the very first show that they were doing the reunion thing at the Hell & Heaven festival in Mexico [last December], but we weren’t able to get to the venue in time to see the show, so I actually didn’t get to see it myself, with my own eyes, but I was very excited to see it.

“It’s weird. To me, it feels like the soul of the band is gone. But there are a lot of people who never did get to see Pantera, and I’m sure that the shows are great, and with time they’ll get even better. They’re doing a ton of stuff this year. I definitely want to see the set, to see them play, even if it’s just to hear some of my favorite tunes. But I’m not Team Phil and Rex or Team Dime and Vinnie. From a fan perspective, it’s cool to be able to see and hear those songs live again. And there’s a lot of people that didn’t get to see it, so if they’re excited, then that’s cool. But I definitely will be catching probably… I know they’re playing around here [in Ontario, Canada] towards the end of the year. I definitely want to catch it when I can. It’s funny, because they’re doing so many festival shows, and there is another new festival, I think, that they’re playing as well that we might be around for. So I guess we’ll see.

“Before Vinnie had passed away, I had seen lots of people talk about, ‘Oh, well, the only person that could fill Dime’s shoes for that should be Zakk Wylde.’ As somebody who was very close to him, who was his friend, also an incredible guitar player, he always made sense for that. And I’d seen people talking about it for years and years and years. And so I can see where people would be excited but also kind of ‘hmmm’, a little weird about it. But if people wanna see them, then more power to them. Myself included — I definitely want to check it out.”

So there you have it, folks. That’s a reasonable take on the whole Pantera discussion. Now, whether venues want to allow Pantera to play given Phil Anselmo‘s past racist actions and remarks… that’s a whole other topic entirely…

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