Oh, dear, my head's almost aching from listening to Phil Anselmo's first solo album. This could be me running on too limited mental capacity or something, and ten years from now, I'll wonder how I could write anything negative about 'Walk Through Exits Only'. However, for now, fact remains that I have a hard time coping with this album in its entirety.
The anger level is very high - which I reckon is fairly impressive when you consider the fact that Anselmo, if I'm to trust the recent interviews I've read and seen, seems to be be doing alright, having stemmed his drug abuse, moved to the countryside and taken Down to a growing popularity. If you insist on comparing this new album to any of the Pantera albums, you'll be looking to 'The Great Southern Trendkill' first and foremost. In fact, Battalion of Zero is scaringly close to Thirteen Steps from 'GST'. Don't get me wrong; I love 'GST' for so many reasons, because it was what it was at the time (1996).
It is the screaming Phil Anselmo we hear all along, and I really, really miss the Phil Anselmo who takes a break every now and then and actually sings. Because he can! Think of Cemetary Gates. Or This Love. I mean, even 'Great Southern' had Suicide Note Pt. 1 where you could sink into Phil's voice and not just be basked around by his vented frustration.
What I'm saying is basically that 'Walk Through Exits Only' is too much. Anger and frantic, complex thrash has taken the place of songs, something which is penultimately frustrating and boring for someone like me!