HELLYEAH Frontman Wishes People Would Stop Asking For PANTERA And MUDVAYNE Reunions
Hellyeah frontman Chad Gray, who used to front Mudvayne, is really pretty tired of people asking him and his band about if and when they'll go back to their old bands. Those bands obviously being Mudvayne and Pantera, who made their cultural mark and are kind of hard to push into the shadows.
In an interview with Revolver, Gray discusses wanting to be respected for his work in Hellyeah, and even goes as far as calling some people "assholes" for wanting a Pantera reunion after Dimebag Darrell's death.
"As an artist — or whatever you do — you wanna be respected for your work. But even after all the records we've done, there's still the stigma of Pantera and Mudvayne and everyone wanting the reunions and all this shit, so it was like, 'Is what we're doing not good enough?” I think it was this unspoken headspace that we had going into this new record, and when I was writing the song 'Be Unden!able', I came up with the line, 'If you're tired of being denied, be undeniable and dot your I's on the bottom.' And dotting your I's on the bottom is an exclamation point. So I think the name 'Unden!able' kind of validates what Hellyeah does."
"Tragically, even if Vinnie wanted to, Pantera can never do a reunion. You can't do a reunion without a member of a band. I think that people forget the emotional aspect of this: Vinnie — who played drums in Pantera and is now a member of Hellyeah — watched his brother get tragically murdered in front of him, and what's on their mind? They wanna see a Pantera reunion. I'm not trying to call people out as assholes, but people are kind of assholes. They forget that he had to live this."
As the years go on, maybe it'll get a little bit less and less, but ultimately being in a band that gains that much notoriety is going to be inescapable forever. People on Romain Goulon's Facebook are constantly asking about a new Necrophagist record, and a good bunch of interviews with Aaron Turner inquire about an Isis reunion. Even beyond that, some fans view bands' progressions past their old sound as a change major enough to constantly, constantly ask about when they're going back to their old sound. Again – it's inescapable, and it sucks but that's just part of being in the public eye.
Gray also addresses that mysterious Mudvayne Facebook post a while back that seemed to hint at an eventual reunion.
"With Mudvayne, it is what it is. I'm tired of stringing people along. I still talk to the guys; we're cool. But for many reasons, Mudvayne doesn't exist anymore. Someone posted that 'Mudvayne 201?' thing online [hinting at a possible Mudvayne reunion] and they shouldn't have done that, because it's fucking with Mudvayne fans emotionally, which isn't fair. I don't want to wind people up, but who am I to say that can never happen again? But I'm certainly not gonna say that it can."
Right. So Hellyeah is Hellyeah, and not Pantera and Mudvayne.