I have to be honest with you. At the beginning of 2015, I didn’t know who the hell Steel Panther even was. Sure, I have seen the occasional YouTube video of this crazy band in Los Angeles doing a unbelievable job covering 80s rock songs with celebrities, but other than that I was completely ignorant of their awesomeness.
Then I saw an ad on Facebook about a month ago advertising that Steel Panther would be playing about four blocks from my house. I decided to at least go to their YouTube page and see what the big deal was.
Two words: holy shit.
I think the only way to describe Steel Panther’s music is that they are a cross between ‘Weird Al’ Yankovic and every single awesome glam metal band that ever existed in the 80s. I think you can describe their sound as mock and roll.
Their lyrics are abrasive, outlandish, extremely offensive, and funny as hell. If you were a fan of the glam metal sound from the 80s like I was (ie: Def Leppard, Poison, Van Halen, Quiet Riot, Bon Jovi, etc.), then you will absolutely fucking love the music of Steel Panther. I can guarantee you that if their songs were released between 1985 and 1989 with “normal lyrics”, they would have been massive hits.
They say that they are simply trying to keep metal music alive in a time where rock music seems to have died. The fact that they do it completely tongue-in-cheek sometimes goes unnoticed by their fans. In fact, the band plays to sold-out shows with thousands of people all across Europe, Australia, and Japan…and I honestly do not think that those fans realize how fake the lyrics are supposed to be.
How bad are the lyrics? They epitomize and summarize practically every hard rock song written throughout the 1980s. If you weren’t around in the 1980’s, then you probably don’t realize that during this time it was a period of excess. Excess booze, drugs, and women…and the hard rock bands of the time did it all without thinking twice about the consequences.
You would listen to songs by bands like Quiet Riot and hear them insinuate that they were partying all the time and banging six and doing lots of drugs. They were, but they couldn’t come right out and say these things. Steel Panther, because they are in on the joke, don’t give a shit and simply sing and do whatever the hell they want.
Here is a perfect example of everything I’m talking about: this is a song called Party All Day (Fuck All Night). It is to steel panther what Rock ‘n’ Roll All Night is to KISS, but is written in the style of Livin’ on a Prayer by Bon Jovi. This is my favorite Panther song, without a doubt, and I haven’t been able to listen to it less than twice a day over the past month.
Another great example of the type of music they are writing can be found in the song Community Property. How many older fans of 80s rock ‘n’ roll remember seeing the “touring band video”? Steel Panther took this and turned it into a steeple song for them. This is one of those songs that doing here wants and want to continue singing four hours after he gets done. Of course, once you hear the lyrics then you will completely understand why you never, ever will get any radio airplane (even with the .
I purchased my tickets to tonight’s Steel Panther show knowing that I would be going alone. At 43 years of age and living in a city where I don’t know I ton of people after moving here three years ago, my only other option would be to take my wife with me. Believe me…this is not her style of music. Not even the “lighter” stuff.
But the great thing about this band is that they remind me of how much I absolutely fucking love this style of music and have since I first entered my teenage years. It has been off the radar for about 30 years now, and the only people who seem to be wanting it to return are the people my age. Thankfully, the age of the “Fanthers” (what the fans call themselves) are getting younger and younger because, quite frankly, the music kicks ass regardless of what the lyrics are about.
So whether or not music experts like and/or appreciate Steel Panthers music (ahem…Eddie Trunk), the fact of the matter is that this band is, incredibly, bringing metal music back to the forefront in a very big way. Because of the size of the crowds that they are garnering all over the world, they really have me excited for the future of rock ‘n’ roll.
I have watched countless live performances on YouTube over the last few weeks and have seen a wide range of ages attending the shows. The fact that I see a ton of fans in their 20s is very exciting to me. This style of music should not die, nor should it ever fade away. Some people may stick their nose in the air and put down this kind of music from the 1980s, but those of us who absolutely love this glam metal sound need to be heard.
I will try to provide an updated blog post next week on my experience at the Steel Panther show, but in the meantime let me just say…two in the pink and one in the stink.
Steel Panther fucking rules.