January 23, 2019 Steel Panther Bring The Metal & Sleaze To Denver, CO 1-19-19
There are bands that help you get through life’s problems via lyrics of empowerment and hope. There are bands who inspire the humanitarian in us, or simply the activist in their listeners. None of those bands are Steel Panther, and guess what? That is just fine.
Hailing from the Los Angeles, California area, Steel Panther has always made it abundantly clear that unless you are talking about an empowering sexual encounter or hope for a hot groupie, they just are not interested, but they sure will make you laugh your ass off. This band is a living tribute to an age of Metal that most kids today would only know by either a parent’s ’80s music collection or a documentary such as the infamous 1988 documentary The Decline of Western Civilization Part II: The Metal Years or, hell, one of the greatest musical autobiographies The Dirt: Confessions of the World’s Most Notorious Rock Band, a 2001 autobiography of Mötley Crüe. All this in mind, since the early 2000s Steel Panther was building up, much like their predecessors, through the underground of the Sunset Strip.
The quartet of Michael Starr on vocals, Lexxi Foxx on bass, Satchel on guitar, and Stix Zadinia on drums, through the years, built their reputation and looked to solidify it in 2008 when they signed with Republic Records and put out their first major release, 2009’s Feel the Steel. Their blend of raunchy lyrics that would make even Vince Neil blush, outrageous uncorked humor, complete disregard for pissing anyone off, amazing musicianship, and one hell of a live show. Still going strong, they brought their insane live show to the Fillmore Auditorium in Denver, Colorado on Saturday, January 19th, ironically the same day as the Women’s March, but it is safe to say their motives in Denver did not have that in mind.
“The ’80s are over” you can hear from so many jokes about anything from music to fashion, but obviously anyone who says that have never been to a Steel Panther show. Pulling up, you could immediately spot a wide range of “Nikki Sixx” adorned wigs of all colors, tiger striped leggings varying from neon pink to highlighter yellow. This crowd was loud, proud, and ready to the core for some good old Metal.
First up on the bill was Denver’s own up and coming Glam Metal band, Love Stallion. Having just released their debut album Unforgettable Ride in the summer of 2018, this band took on a tall order opening for a band like Steel Panther at, of all venues, the great Fillmore Auditorium, not a place newer local bands play. A quick listen to the band however made everyone forget they are a fresh band. They played with confidence and got the party started with ease. If a return to the good old sounds of ’70s/’80s Glam with all of its amazing theatricality and a modern edge to boot is what you are looking for, this is the band to check out. They got the audience into a full on uproar, and they were ready for more.
As the lights dimmed the fans knew damn well what time it was, and by the screaming chants of “Steel Panther” they were not shy to let the band know they were ready. Kicking off their set with a track from their first album, “Eyes of a Panther,” Steel Panther went completely out of control. The best way to describe Michael Starr is a ball of unbridled energy and despite flying all over the stage his vocals were simply on point. The front trio of Michael Starr, Lexxi, and Satchel (fresh off his release from sex rehab) delivered with so much intensity they never let up on their audience.
After the band followed up with the track “Goin’ in the Back Door,” they delivered a band introduction unlike any other bands laden with jokes and sexual connotations at the expense of each band member and some fans as well. While the band rocked the crowd with some of their favorite tracks such as “Death To All But Metal,” “Community Property,” and “Asian Hooker” their searing covers of Mötley Crüe’s “Kickstart My Heart” and Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar on Me” made the night simply unforgettable. If this is a band you have not seen, they should be on the list of things to experience.
Loud, raunchy, inappropriately funny, and unhinged are a few ways one can explain the experience of seeing Steel Panther, sheer unadulterated fun. In a time of stress, political upheaval, and absurd political correctness, this is the band to give the audience some much needed reprieve. If face-melting Metal is what one is searching for, they would be at a loss if they missed a chance to see Steel Panther.