Released: 2006, Big Vin Records
Reviewer: Lord of the Wasteland
The brutal on-stage slaying of Pantera/Damageplan guitarist, “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott in December 2004 shook the heavy metal world to its very foundations, leaving anger, bewilderment and shock in its wake. The guitarist, a notoriously hard-drinking, hard-living individual, was befriended by many, his affable personality and kind ways making even casual acquaintances feel like good friends. Perhaps the biggest tragedy was that Dimebag was killed in front of his brother and bandmate, Vinnie Paul, left helpless behind his drumkit, no doubt wondering if what was unfolding before was real or a terrible nightmare.
As a tribute to Dimebag, Vinnie Paul, through his new record label Big Vin Records, has compiled a DVD of raw footage, behind-the-scenes material and early live goodies for fans to enjoy under the title, DIMEVISION VOL. 1: THAT’S THE FUN I HAVE. At 75 minutes, the DVD is the perfect length. This is not a documentary, a live concert or music videos. Instead, it is a compilation of home movies that focuses on Dimebag’s insurmountable talent but also the hijinks and shenanigans that the guitarist passed his time with. His enthusiasm for launching fireworks—often indoors—on unsuspecting drunken friends is given more than ample (I stress MORE THAN AMPLE) screen time but the real gems here include the extensive clips of what Dime did best: play guitar. Featuring recent Damageplan footage and going all the way back to vintage videos from the early eighties showing Pantera on stage doing Ozzy Osbourne and Metallica covers (with Dimebag on vocals!), seeing Dime shred away during his lengthy solos is a real treat. Granted, the spandex and poodle hair he sports in the clips from 1984 are worth a chuckle but even then, at a mere eighteen years old, his natural talent was evident. Hundreds and hundreds of new and old photos (see Dime with an afro, no beard and about fifty pounds lighter) round out the package with Pantera and Damageplan tunes serving as the soundtrack.
While DIMEVISION VOL. 1: THAT’S THE FUN I HAVE is rather sloppily put together, the material therein is still very much worth checking out for any fan of Dimebag Darrell. This is all never-before-seen footage and for a die-hard fan or collector, it must be like the Holy Grail. Some of the fireworks scenes could have been left off without skipping a beat and seeing a bunch of rednecks tear up Dime’s front lawn with a truck until the tires literally fall off gets pretty tedious but that was his life, warts and all, as presented on this DVD. The music world suffered a great loss when Dimebag Darrell was murdered but thanks to Vinnie Paul, his legacy lives on with this first entry in the DIMEVISION catalogue, DIMEVISION VOL. 1: THAT’S THE FUN I HAVE.