San Francisco Bay Area metallers MACHINE HEAD have paid tribute to Vinnie Paul Abbott, saying the former PANTERA drummer inspired them with his "amazing style" and "incredible sound."
Vinnie Paul reportedly died in his sleep at his home in Las Vegas on Friday, June 22. He was 54 years old.
Earlier today, MACHINE HEAD posted a gallery of photos of the band with Vinnie Paul, along with the follow message: "Vinnie Paul inspired our band with his amazing style, incredible sound, and mostly his always-friendly, good-time attitude.
"MACHINE HEAD was fortunate to tour with Vinnie three times (twice with PANTERA, and again with HELLYEAH; Dave [McClain, drums] toured with him a fourth time in SACRED REICH on the 'Vulgar' tour), numerous hangs at festivals in Japan, Australia, and the U.K., and far too many blurry nights at the Clubhouse in Dallas.
"He was always ready for a rage, always with a smile, and ALWAYS ready with a shot of Crown or Skyy Vodka. Vinnie even played 'Halo' with us helping out his friend Dave when his mom passed away on tour. He practiced all day to learn the song and his dedication showed in his performance.
"Rest in peace, Vinnie Paul. You are gone far too soon."
Back in January 2016, MACHINE HEAD's Robb Flynn released an eleven-minute video in which he denounced PANTERA singer Philip Anselmo as a "big bully" and a racist after Anselmo gave the right-arm salute and yelled a white-supremacist slogan at a California concert. Flynn concluded by saying that he would never play another PANTERA song again. Philip fired back a few months later, accusing Flynn in an interview of wanting "to ride the coattails."
MACHINE HEAD recently completed North American and European tours in support of its latest album, "Catharsis", which came out in January.