Name a group of talented musicians who can rock your face off, curse enough to make a sailor blush and thinks the Kama Sutra should be taught in preschool. There’s only one group that fits that description, the band your mother warned you about, STEEL PANTHER. I hadn’t seen them play in three years so I was primed to not only see them again but also how the crowd reacted.
We didn’t have to wait long as the sold out House of Blues Dallas audience began screaming as a voice came over the speakers and said, “Ladies and gentlemen, the greatest band in the world, STEEL ‘FUCKING’ PANTHER.”
Vocalist Michael Starr started talking to the crowd, embarrassing them and looking for women to eventually bring up on the stage.
The humorous and profane lyrics they’re known for came out in their first song, “It Won’t Suck Itself.” This caused the guy sitting next to me to declare, “Truer words were never spoken,” while Starr basked in the applause. Satchel on guitar and Lexxi Foxx on bass joined Starr for a well-choreographed three-man front line and kicked like The Rockettes on “Tomorrow Night.”
Michael also showed his signature move of leaning backwards with his head almost touching the floor and the mic dangling inches above his mouth.
Starr talked about Lower The Bar, (out now, Open E), their fourth studio album. The band members introduced each other while following Guy Rule #3 – Never miss the chance to potentially humiliate a friend.
It was a well-rehearsed segue into “Party Like Tomorrow Is The End Of The World,” with its scintillating guitar solo. The perfect follow-up song, “Asian Hooker,” contained all the lewd gestures expected from a song with such a provocative title.
The self-explanatory “Poontang Boomerang” saw Starr explore almost every square inch of the stage. He continued to use that stage as his personal dance floor during “Let Me Cum In.”
In addition to being a well-constructed song highlighting the talents of drummer Stix Zaldinia, it was also the theme song of every man in the audience.
The vastly underrated Satchel exploded on a solo that captivated the crowd. Playing pieces of “Eruption” and “Smoke On The Water” mesmerized the crowd before he sped up the beats to parts of “Enter Sandman,” “War Pigs” and a super-speed sing-along version of “Do Re Mi.” Who knew metal heads were also fans of The Sound Of Music?
The rest of the band came back onstage and the guitarists delivered a synchronized performance during “Turn Out The Lights.” While Lexxi (the extra “X” is for “Sexy”) fixed his hair and put on more lip gloss while holding his ever-present mirror, Starr found Jane in the audience celebrating her birthday.
Security lifted her onstage and all four musicians made up a lewd song-verse about her before she flashed the audience (after all, it was her birthday!).
She received a booming ovation both for her willingness to give the crowd a cheap thrill and the fact that she did, indeed, have a nice rack! They brought Jane’s friend onstage to help them sing “Girl from Oklahoma” and she nailed her guest appearance like a pro. The LA-based band filled the stage with 15 more ladies shaking their moneymakers for “17 Girls In A Row.” They segued directly into “Gloryhole” and the women danced and sang about those times when you just don’t want to know who’s on the other side of the wall.
The birthday girl came out to the front to dance again during “Anything Goes” from their just released album. All the women gyrated different body parts for “Community Property,” which started as a ballad, then picked up steam to turn into a helluva rock song.
The band finished with the hard-edged “Death To All But Metal,” one of their best. The screaming started before the song when Starr asked the eternal question, “How many of y’all want to kick Justin Bieber in the balls?” The deafening reply of “Yes” stayed loud until the end of the song and the set.
The crowd roared, clapped and stomped until the band came back for an encore as Satchel pounded the cowbell with determination during “Fat Girl (Thar She Blows).” The true-to-life lyrics accompanied the rock beat that captivated the worshipping crowd. The band finished the concert with the wishful song “Party All Day (Fuck All Night)” to end a raucous night.
STEEL PANTHER may be a parody of 80’s glam bands, but many of the bands they’re satirizing could take lessons on how to put together a show. The three-time #1 Comedy Album band tour incessantly and know what works and what doesn’t.
The show isn’t for everyone, but what concert is? It would be boring as hell if everybody liked the same music and had the same sense of humor.
The guys are excellent musicians and entertainers, having the ability to make a well-rehearsed spot look to be spontaneous. They know that music lovers, comedy lovers and reprobates come to see them perform and play to that strength. Fans who lived through the 80’s, and still remember parts of it, love the show. Catch them on the national leg of their 17 Girls In A Row Tour through May 14. The international leg continues through June 18. As always, House of Blues Dallas was accommodating and helpful.
LIVE IMAGES: GUZPIX
LIVE WORDS: DAVID SIMERS