Dance music legend Moby, Pantera guitarist Dimebag Darrell, and Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee, once all got drunk and decided to form a band. There are multiple surprises within that sentence – Moby is a big Pantera fan, Tommy Lee and Dimebag Darrell wanted to be in a band with Moby, and alcohol was involved in this situation. Maybe not so much of a surprise on that one…
Here's the story of Moby's metal fandom and the band that never was, courtesy of Metal Hammer.
“I played in punk rock bands when I was younger. And part of that ethos was the rejection of music made by anyone with long hair. But at some point, we released there was this whole genre of speed metal that sounded like we were playing. Early Metallica, for example, sounded a lot like early Black Flag. So we had to reassess our prejudices against music made by people with long hair.
I was in band called Vatican Commandos, and our drummer Chip, came in with Motörhead‘s ‘Ace Of Spades‘ single. It was a case of: ‘Wow, this is really good! And they have long hair!’ So that opened the floodgates.
The first time I heard Pantera was  ‘Far Beyond Driven‘. I always feel weird lumping Pantera into the speed metal genre. They were so qualitatively different from anyone else. They occupied their own niche.
‘The Great Southern Trendkill‘ is so unrelentingly dark. The lyrics of ‘War Nerve‘ are the most unrelentingly evil lyrics you can imagine. They make church-burning Norwegian Satanists sound like Sunday school teachers. It’s just that whole vituperative expression of anger and rage. Pantera even managed to be, dare I say it, kind of funky at times. One of they ways they were able to get such a huge guitar sound was because [Dimebag] Darrell double-tracked all his guitar parts.
I got to know Pantera a little too. I was in Dallas in 2002 and had a night off, so went to go see Tommy Lee perform. I’d known Tommy for a while, so we were just hanging out afterwards, when Darrell and Vinnie [Paul, drummer] came backstage with a bunch of Hell’s Angels. We all started drinking, then went to the strip club Pantera own and we had this long, crazy, whiskey-fuelled night.
At some point, about four in the morning, Darrell, Tommy and I – in our completely devastated state – decided to form a band. We just thought that was the best idea anyone had ever had. Of course, nothing came of that – except a hangover that lasted for days.
A part of Pantera‘s trajectory was Phil Anselmo‘s drug addiction. And I think ‘The Great Southern Trendkill‘ is the last record they made before he got clean. I remember seeing them a couple of times. The first time, Phil was like an angry junkie with a shaved head.
And you can imagine the sort of people that come out to a Pantera show: some of the most violent, misanthropic people on the planet. So me being a sissy, I stood way back and watched the whole thing. That show was phenomenal and terrifying at the same time.”
Maybe Moby can get into a metal band now with some modern dudes?