DOWN, the New Orleans-based act fronted by former PANTERA singer Philip Anselmo, has been removed from the billing of this year’s edition of the annual Dutch festival FortaRock.
The FortaRock organizers said in a statement: “After the recent outbursts by singer Phil Anselmo during the Dimebash event in the U.S., his band DOWN is no longer welcome at FortaRock. Anselmo ended the show in the U.S. with a Nazi salute and shouted ‘white power.’
“There has been close consultation between all parties recent days, since we wanted to make a well informed decision. On that basis, the decision is made to cancel the act. We want to make clear that there is no room for racism or fascism on FortaRock.”
The 2016 edition of FortaRock is set to take place June 4-5 in Nijmegen.
Anselmo performed the PANTERA classic “Walk” at the January 22 “Dimebash” event at the Lucky Strike Live in Hollywood, California in honor of his former bandmate, late PANTERA guitarist “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott. As he left the stage, he made a Nazi-style salute. He appeared to say “white power” as he made the gesture, but he later claimed he was referring to drinking white wine as part of an “inside joke.” Anselmo has since released a video message, saying that he “deserves completely” the “heat” that he has been getting over his actions and claiming to be “a thousand percent apologetic to anyone that took offense to what [he] said.”
Several notable musicians have come out and criticized Anselmo for his actions, including MACHINE HEAD frontman Robb Flynn, who uploaded an eleven-minute video response to the incident in which he called Anselmo a “big bully” and described Philip’s behavior as “fucking wrong.”