Steel Panther + The Treatment
@ Brixton Academy 31/03/2012
Review by James Meakin
Everybody Scream, Heavy Metal’s Back!
Written in the annals of history, carved into the primordial genetic makeup of modern music and stuffed into skin tight trousers is the greatest heavy metal band in the world. The year, 1985, Hollywood California, four high school friends come together and create a band in order to get drunk, get high and most importantly get laid.
Emerging triumphantly from sunset strip, the infamous cess pit of sordid rock and roll decadence Steel Panther was born!
For every one person crammed into the walls of south London’s Brixton Academy dressed in spoof costume, fake mullet wigs and hair spray there are five spandex clad rock revellers still living the 1980s dream.
This speaks volumes for a parody/comedy act such as ex Hollywood bar covers novelty Steel Panther, now standing in front of 5000 baying audience members going through the Jack Daniels like it was midnight 31st December 1989. Many long and arduous years ago I stood not six feet from the spot I chose to lap up the Steel Panther feted rock and roll indulgence to watch The Darkness.
The Darkness emerged through the music scene as a serious force to be reckoned with, after the show I knew I had been duped. It was all a joke, The Darkness was a fake comedy side show. Steel Panther look and sound a parody, the joke is, this is as serious as it gets.
Opening the show were British leather clad lads ‘The Treatment’ who provide fantastic drinking music for the audience members filtering through the doors. ‘Killers’ is greeted by the front row with raucous applause.
Stunning falsetto vocals, big beefy British riffs made up for the battle they waged with the sound quality.
They played for their lives and the effort was notably applauded from the ever growing inebriated mob forming in the pit. [3/5]
The lights go out and the sold out academy explodes, the stage is bathed in pink and blue light and the obscene Steel Panther show begins.
For the price of admission you are seeing every hair metal/glam metal band from the 1980s at once.
For anyone who has had the pleasure of seeing bands such as Airbourne, it is the feeling of seeing ACDC in a small theatre and the feeling of seeing Steel Panther is like seeing Poison, Def Leppard and Motley Cru all in their heyday.
The characters created are outstanding, the vain self involved pouting bassist constantly checking the mirror in the shape of Lexxi Foxx, wide eyed super fit vocalist Michael Starr, fearless and wacky drummer Stix Zadinia and guitarist/band leader ‘Satchel’.
Torch songs ‘Death to All But Metal’ and ‘Fat Girl’ have the audience in fine voice. ‘Asian Hooker’ sees a gent dressed as sushi crash over the barrier.
The between song banter is filthy and the atmosphere is electric. Steel Panther claim tonight to be ‘the best band in their age category!’ and most certainly are.
What seems to be lost in all the bare chested ladies, shots of whiskey, gratuitously sexual banter and can after can of hairspray is these are four incredibly talented musicians playing well crafted rock songs. Satchel’s mid set solo stands up with some of the best I have seen live, Party All Day (And Fuck All Night) is a modern glam classic and the closer ’17 Girls in a Row’ just oozes confidence.
It is what it is, a stadium sleaze rock evening of drinking for twenty quid and you cannot argue with that kind of value for money for just pure fun.
The joke Steel Panther are playing on everyone is that these are four dudes who long for the decadent golden years when Jack Daniels flowed down the strip like water and Poison ruled the airwaves.
These guys just have a great sense of humour, minds in the gutter and gallons of charisma, and judging from the 5,000 satisfied ticket holders heading for the tube, they aren’t the only ones.
This is the most fun you will have at a show this year, check your brain at the door and don’t forget; Eatin’ Ain’t Cheatin’. [4/5]