In a brand new interview with Andivero magazine, Philip Anselmo spoke about what it has been like having his life put under a microscope ever since PANTERA became one of the biggest names in the heavy metal genre more than 20 years ago. "Aside from the popularity of PANTERA and the tragedy and how it all got… you know, of course you're going to grow up your whole adult life in the spotlight and you're going to be examined like an insect, you know?" he said. "Like a scientist does an insect.
"Honestly, I don't see anything that I do as so sensational," he continued. "I haven't even thrown a meaningful punch in twenty years. It's like, Jesus H. Christ, how much of a threat am I? I don't write songs about anything. If anything, I play up characters in songs. I've done that since… god, I guess my first example I can think of is with 'Fucking Hostile' with PANTERA, you know? Now I'll play the part of the this, that, whatever. I do that my entire career with other bands, you know?
"I can see my creativity, sure, take it or leave it, hate it or whatever, but honestly, I have never liked putting people in boxes," Anselmo added. "However, the media likes to do so, or political assholes like to do so. I'm not like that. It takes all kinds to make the world go round and not everybody has the same fucking idea of how this world works and that in itself is the beauty of the world and the pulse of the world.
"I get public sentiment when it comes to certain things. I get all that, but when it comes to me, it's, like, man, am I really all that fucking controversial or am I just a dude who is very much so living out his human experience with his heart on his sleeve, calling it like I see it and making music? I mean really, fuck it, you know? Tear it apart all you want. I just don't really see myself as this dangerous fellow. I'm 50 fucking years old."
Philip made headlines more than two years ago when he gave the right-arm salute and yelled a white-supremacist slogan at a California concert. He later claimed he was joking about drinking white wine backstage and was reacting to the audience members up front who he says were taunting him. He also blasted "false journalism in the metal community" for suggesting he was racist because of the incident, insisting that he was treated unfairly by people who jumped to conclusions without attempting to find out the facts.
Anselmo is currently recovering from back surgery he underwent at the end of January — the latest in a line of corrective procedures designed to helped him deal with the damage to his back, neck, and knees sustained over two decades of touring.
Philip's solo project, PHILIP H. ANSELMO & THE ILLEGALS, released its sophomore album, "Choosing Mental Illness As A Virtue", last November via Anselmo's Housecore Records in the U.S. and Season Of Mist in other parts of the world.