Pantera’s discography is like the story of Jeckyll and Hyde transposed to heavy metal: nine albums almost evenly split into two distinct career phases that, if not quite 100 percent dissimilar, musically speaking, were certainly polar opposites in terms of attitude and commercial expectations.
The great irony, of course, is that the band remained relatively anonymous during their initial, 1980s phase with singer Terry Glaze, when they were trying to please commercial trends; only to become a household name in the 1990s after Philip Anselmo entered the fold, when they switched gears and decided to please no one but themselves.
In doing so, Philip Anselmo, Dimebag Darrell, Rex Brown and Vinnie Paul pleased millions of devoted heavy metal fans –- even as they were aurally assaulting them with some of the most crushing heavy metal ever caught on tape.
So, as we set about the task of ranking all of Pantera’s studio albums, we were hardly surprised at how these two sides of their recording coin shook out, but that doesn’t mean the exercise was in vain, as there were some ranking tough choices among the band's later discography.
Click through the gallery above to see how Pantera's albums rank, and let us know what you think in the comments section below.