13 Incredible Bands Similar To Pantera

The world of heavy metal is vast and varied, with countless bands making their mark on the genre. One of the most influential among them is Pantera, whose songs leave fans screaming for more.

Yet Pantera’s impact extends beyond their own discography. Indeed, there are numerous bands that share similar stylistic elements.

Interested in discovering more? Here, we’ve listed 13 incredible bands like Pantera, each contributing to the rich tapestry of heavy metal. Let’s get started.`

1. Damageplan

Our first heavy metal band rose from the ashes of Pantera. After Pantera’s dissolution, brothers Vinnie Paul and Dimebag Darrell Abbott decided to continue their musical journey together by creating Damageplan in 2003.

The band’s sound carried over some of the groove metal elements the Abbott brothers were known for in Pantera but also incorporated elements of thrash metal and hardcore.

They released one album, New Found Power, in 2004, which was well-received and peaked at #38 on the Billboard 200 chart. It included tracks like “Save Me” and “Breathing New Life,” which showcased the band’s intense and heavy sound.

However, the band’s promising journey was tragically cut short. On December 8, 2004, during a concert in Ohio, Dimebag Darrell was shot and killed onstage by a deranged fan. The tragic incident led to the disbandment of Damageplan.

2. Slayer

As one of the big four bands of thrash metal, Slayer holds a significant place in the world of heavy metal music. Together with Megadeth, Metallica, and Anthrax, their distinctive sound and aggressive style have made them a favorite among Pantera fans.

Slayer has many similarities to Pantera. Genre aside, both bands are known for their intensity on stage and their relentless headbanging tunes.

The band released 12 studio albums over their career, many of which charted on Billboard 200. Some of their most acclaimed works include Reign In Blood, South of Heaven, and Seasons in the Abyss.

In 2019, Slayer embarked on a farewell tour, culminating in a performance in Los Angeles on November 30th. The reason for their disbandment is believed to be related to singer-bassist Tom Araya’s health conditions and his desire to retire from performing.

3. Sepultura

As one of the most influential bands to emerge from Brazil, Sepultura has not only shaped the landscape of heavy metal music but also brought global attention to the Brazilian music scene.

Their distinctive fusion of thrash, death metal, and indigenous musical elements continues to resonate deeply within the heavy metal community, illustrating their enduring impact and influence around the world.

Sepultura’s consequential contribution to groove metal can be heard in albums such as Chaos A.D. and Roots. If you’re a fan of Pantera’s heavier tunes with an underlying groovy rhythm that gets your head banging along without hesitation, then these albums are definitely worth checking out.

4. Machine Head

Hailing from Oakland, California, Machine Head stands as a cornerstone of American heavy metal. The band, founded in 1991 by lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Robb Flynn, has been instrumental in shaping the genre over the last three decades.

Machine Head’s sound is a potent mix of groove metal and thrash metal, just like Pantera’s. After debuting with Burn My Eyes in 1994, they went on to release nine more charting albums throughout their career.

Their latest, Of Kingdom and Crown, released in August 2022, is a testament to their musical evolution while preserving their signature intensity.

The band’s roster has seen several changes over the years, with Flynn and bassist Jared MacEachern currently at the helm. Despite these shifts, Machine Head has retained its commanding presence in the metal world.

5. Lamb Of God

Despite their name, our next band similar to Pantera, is not a religious group. Lamb of God is a heavy metal band that hails from Richmond, Virginia. They made a name for themselves in the late 1990s with their hard-hitting sound and politically charged lyrics.

Despite being classified within the thrash metal genre, Lamb of God’s sound incorporates elements of various subgenres within the larger umbrella of heavy metal music.

Their notable works include Ashes of the Wake, Sacrament, Wrath, and their latest release, Omens. Songs such as “Laid to Rest,” “Redneck,” and “Memento Mori” have become fan favorites.

One testament to Lamb of God’s influence can be seen in David Ellefson’s comment that they “took the throne” after Pantera disbanded.

6. Down

The next band named alongside Pantera in terms of similar sounds is the heavy metal supergroup Down, formed in 1991 in New Orleans by members of various bands, including Pantera’s own Phil Anselmo.

Since then, Down has toured extensively and collaborated with other artists like Rex Brown (former member of Pantera) on their album NOLA. Some of their most popular songs include “Lifer” and “Ghosts Along the Mississippi.”

One of the most recent updates on the band was a rare performance at the Blue Ridge Rock Festival in 2022. This event was highly anticipated by fans, showcasing Down’s enduring appeal and ability to draw crowds even after three decades in the industry.

7. Testament

The American thrash metal band Testament has played a significant role in shaping the history of heavy metal music. The band was formed in 1983 under the name Legacy and changed to Testament in 1986, releasing their debut album, The Legacy, the same year.

Following this, they released 12 more albums. The most popular among these is their 11th studio album, Dark Roots of Earth, released in 2012. It landed at #12 on Billboard 200 and topped both Rock Albums and Hard Rock Albums charts.

Even with several lineup changes over the years, Testament has preserved its status as a force within the thrash metal scene. Their commitment to their craft, along with their ability to adapt their sound while honoring their origins, makes them a must-listen for Pantera fans or any heavy metal enthusiast.

8. Anthrax

One of the big four in thrash metal, Anthrax has been around since the early 1980s. The band’s founding members were rhythm guitarist Scott Ian and bassist Dan Lilker.

Anthrax’s rise to fame was a steady journey that began in 1981. However, it was their third album, Among the Living, in 1987 that truly catapulted them into the limelight. The album is often considered their best work and features the hit tracks “Caught in a Mosh,” “I Am the Law,” and “Indians.”

As of 2023, the band is still active, continually contributing to the world of thrash metal with their energetic performances and powerful music. They recently celebrated their 40th anniversary with a live stream concert, which they made available on Blu-ray and digital platforms.

9. Soulfly

Next up is the heavy metal band Soulfly, which was formed in Los Angeles, California, in 1997 by Max Cavalera after he left his previous band, Sepultura. Soulfly has since relocated and is now based out of Phoenix, Arizona.

Flash forward to 2023, and Soulfly has a dozen studio albums to their name, their latest musical masterpiece being Totem. Each album is an exploration of Soulfly’s ever-evolving sound, yet all carry the band’s musical identity: nu-metal, groove, thrash, and death metal, all seasoned with a sprinkle of folk influences.

In their career, Soulfly has crossed paths with Pantera. Both bands have toured together, like in 2001, when Soufly supported Pantera on their tour, creating unforgettable moments for metal fans.

10. Metallica

When discussing heavy metal music, Metallica will always be included, considering the band is one of the big four of thrash metal. They have been creating music since 1981 and, like Pantera, have experimented with different subgenres of metal music and pushed boundaries.

They’ve released numerous chart-topping albums over the years, including Master of Puppets, And Justice for All, and the self-titled Metallica (also known as the Black Album), which features some of their most popular songs like “Enter Sandman” and “Nothing Else Matters.”

Metallica was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2009, and after four decades in the industry, they are still very much active. They continue to tour and record new music, with their latest album being another #1 hit, 72 Seasons.

11. Exodus

From the vibrant musical landscape of Richmond, California, in 1979, the powerhouse thrash metal band Exodus emerged. With their relentless speed, aggressive guitar work, and vivid, often dark storytelling, they shaped the sound and direction of thrash metal for decades.

The debut album from Exodus, Bonded by Blood, hit the scene in 1985 and quickly became a classic in the thrash metal genre. They’ve since added many more albums to their discography, including Fabulous Disaster, Tempo of the Damned, and their most recent release, Persona Non Grata, in 2021.

Exodus shares similarities with Pantera in terms of their sound and style, not to mention high-energy performances. You can hear the influence of other greats like Metallica and Slayer in their music too.

12. Fear Factory

Another great band that has played a significant role in shaping heavy metal music like Pantera is Fear Factory. Known for their genre-bending sound, the band was formed in 1989 and has since released eight full-length albums, as well as several singles and remixes.

The band’s influence on heavy metal music cannot be overstated. Fear Factory was listed at #7 on MetalSucks’ 25 Most Important Metal Bands of the ’90s list, cementing their position as pioneers of alternative metal.

One noteworthy aspect of Fear Factory is their ability to continuously evolve while still staying true to themselves. The addition of new members and experimentation with different musical styles have kept fans engaged over time without alienating any hardcore followers.

13. Superjoint Ritual

We end this list with Superjoint Ritual, a heavy metal band formed in the early 2000s as a side project of Pantera’s frontman Phil Anselmo. They incorporated elements from different subgenres of metal music into their sound, including thrash and death metal.

Superjoint Ritual released two studio albums: Use Once and Destroy in 2002 and A Lethal Dose of American Hatred in 2003. Both albums were well-received by fans and critics alike.

Despite their success, the band faced challenges, including legal issues that led to a name change from Superjoint Ritual to Superjoint. Throughout their active years, Superjoint Ritual made significant contributions to the metal genre, and their music continues to be appreciated by fans around the world.

Summing Up Our List Of Bands Like Pantera

That’s a wrap! We’ve had a fun ride diving into the world of heavy metal and learning about bands that share Pantera’s sound.

Thanks for joining us on this trip through music. We hope this article was not just educational but also gave you some cool new songs to add to your playlist.

If you have some favorite bands that you think we missed, give us a shout, and we’ll put them on our list!

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Written by Dan Farrant
Dan Farrant, the founder of Hello Music Theory, has been teaching music for over 15 years, helping hundreds of thousands of students unlock the joy of music. He graduated from The Royal Academy of Music in 2012 and then launched Hello Music Theory in 2014. He plays the guitar, piano, bass guitar and double bass and loves teaching music theory.