"Walk" is a pantheonic metal anthem of epic proportions; "Cemetery Gates" won a fucking Grammy. If there's any single word one could use to describe Pantera, it certainly isn't underappreciated. But even the greats have their hidden gems and lesser-known fan favorites, which is why we asked you our readers to pick the Texan juggernaut's single best deep cut. Notably, three of the top five vote-getters hail from the band's penultimate album The Great Southern Trendkill, a harrowing, abrasive listen that filtered out the the casual clingers-on from the true die-hards — as all these songs surely do.
A disorienting trip through backward tape snippets, low-grumbling depressive musings, and outlaw country-inspired acoustic guitar, this centerpiece track from The Great Southern Trendkill is an experimental anomaly in the Cowboys From Hell's discography. The druggy, hazy tones play out more in line with the sound of Jars of Flies-style grunge than traditional heavy metal, but with a uniquely sinister feel that's all Pantera.
Pure Pantera groove dominates throughout the minute-long instrumental intro, highlighting this Vulgar Display of Power deep cut as an Abbott brother masterpiece. Anselmo also shines thanks to lyrics that are smarter than they sound at first, delivering a biting critique of performative macho culture that instigates violence for the sake of violence rather than the protection of your fellow man. As he says in the second verse: "I fight for love of brother, your friends fight one another."
Another doomed-out heavy hitter from Trendkill, "10's" tackles the throes of heroin addiction and the havoc it brings upon the body of the user. Lyrics like "Long for the blur/We cannot dry much longer/Cement to dirt/Disgusted with my cheapness" pull no punches, and the morose mood echoes the solitude and suffering of someone (i.e. Anselmo) caught up in their need for a fix.
The name kind of says it all, doesn't it? This one fucking rips, but it also employs some tricks from Pantera's early glam days with gang chants in the chorus and Anselmo delivering his best lower-range King Diamond impression to back it up. Lyrically speaking, it's a traditional Panterian "fuck you" to authority and blind allegiance, with everyone coming together in the dream world, unified by a single art and emotion: to shred.
Trendkill's lyrical darkness and demonic sound reign supreme for you, the fans, who've chosen "Floods" as the No. 1 deep cut in Pantera's catalog. The apocalyptic opus contains one of the greatest and most revered guitar solos of all time that helps usher in the story of all mankind being washed away in a flood of biblical proportions. At nearly seven minutes long, it's also the longest song on the album (the third longest in the band's repertoire), and so beloved by die-hards that it consistently garners top-10 status in lists ranking all of Pantera's songs, not just the deep cuts — as well it should.