Far Beyond Driven [20th Anniversary Edition]

Far Beyond Driven [20th Anniversary Edition]

by Pantera

CD(Anniversary Edition)

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Far Beyond Driven [20th Anniversary Edition]

Far Beyond Driven may have been Pantera's fastest selling album upon release, but it's hardly their best. In fact, although it shot straight to the number one spot on the Billboard sales chart in its first week (arguably the most extreme album ever to do so), this incredible feat doesn't so much reflect its own qualities as those of its predecessor, 1992's Vulgar Display of Power. A true landmark by any definition, Vulgar Display had seen the Texan quartet quite literally reinventing the heavy metal wheel in ways not seen since Metallica's rise to fame in the mid-'80s. But when the time came to follow it up, the members of Pantera seemed unsure about how they could possibly top it, so they decided to try and out-heavy themselves, resulting in a less cohesive record which often sacrificed songwriting for outright aggression. Guitarist Dimebag Darrell (recently re-baptized from the far more glam Diamond Darrell) took it upon himself to conjure the heaviest guitar tones imaginable, turning up the volume and dissonance to sometimes painful thresholds with his massive, grinding riffs. As a result, songs like "Becoming," "Shedding Skin," and the particularly vicious "Slaughtered" still stand head and shoulders above most of the heavy metal competition, but only die-hard fans may be able to withstand their systematic sensory bludgeoning long enough to get to the hooks hidden underneath. Indeed, except for wisely chosen first single "I'm Broken," the rest of the material (and especially over-long tracks like "5 Minutes Alone" and "25 Years") generally lacks the iron-fisted discipline and controlled power captured on the band's previous triumphs. Worst of all is probably "Good Friends and a Bottle of Pills," which wanders aimlessly in formless feedback and is topped with vocalist Phil Anselmo in gratuitous, stream-of-consciousness mode -- a sketchy proposition at the best of times. In the end, it's probably the band's need to justifying their faithful cover version of Black Sabbath's gentle "Planet Caravan" in the album's liner notes that sheds the most light on their embattled frame of mind at the time. With or without this evidence, however, the bottom line is that Far Beyond Driven doesn't match the hype -- but it sure proved its weight in platinum at the bank. [A 20th Anniversary Edition was released in 2014.]

Product Details

Release Date: 03/25/2014
Label: Atlantic
UPC: 0081227960292
catalogNumber: 541769
Rank: 26676

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Pantera   Primary Artist
Vinnie Paul   Drums,Group Member
Phil Anselmo   Vocals,Group Member
Rex Brown   Bass,Group Member
Dimebag Darrell   Guitar,Group Member

Technical Credits

Ozzy Osbourne   Composer
Pantera   Arranger,Composer,Producer
Geezer Butler   Composer
Terry Date   Producer,Engineer
Tony Iommi   Composer
Vinnie Paul   Producer,Engineer
Bill Ward   Composer
Richard Bates   Art Direction
Dean Karr   Cover Photo,Insert Photography,Back Cover Photo
Sterling Winfield   Bass Technician
Aaron Barnes   Live Sound Engineer
Grady Champion   Guitar Techician
Dan Epstein   Liner Notes
Rory Wilson   Reissue Design
Kimberly Zide Davis   Reissue Producer
John Brooks   Drum Technician
Patrick Tempest   Reissue Design
Heger Levine   Monitor Engineer

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