This show seemed to come out of nowhere to me but perhaps that was because I had already mapped out my Metal adventuring for the next few days and was even getting myself mentally prepared for the 2011 NY Comic Con. That being said I was very surprised to find Steel Panther returning to NYC as it’s been awhile since the band had paid us a visit. Unless I was mistaken about a show that I did not attend, the band has not been here since the gig that we covered back in April of 2009 over at the Canal Room. So here we were again and finding this gig to be completely sold out. How cool is that for a band upon their return. Part of the excitement was that they were only a few weeks away from the release of their second album which was called “Balls Out” and this packed Gramercy Theatre was filled with the ardent fan as well as the new and curious. Here is how the night went for those not lucky enough to have a ticket.
Tonight would mark my second time catching the band and I was interested in seeing just how different this one might be from that show a couple of years ago. At the first show I had to say that I enjoyed the blend of comedy and rousing eighties themed Hard Rock and Metal that they do as clearly Michael Starr and the boys do some justice to their instruments. They all appear to be talented musicians even though they are continually scoping out the women in the front few rows to see which ones can be easily defiled in the backstage area after (or sometimes during) the show. They opened with the energetic “Eyes Of A Panther” and that is a moving track for sure but I was a little surprised by “Asian Hooker” coming up next and so early in the set since its one of their more popular numbers. “Fat Girl” had the costumed crowd singing along with the chorus and yes if I did not mention this already, a good portion of the crowd was dressed in their Glam Rock best. Many were keeping character as the band themselves which made this something like a Metal version of the “Rocky Horror Picture Show”. Very interesting to say the least. “Critter” gave us the first taste of the new release and I had to admit I had not yet heard a single tune from it but it was alright. It seemed to follow in the premise of their “Feel The Steel” album. They would not deliver any covers this evening which I guess is a good thing with two albums worth of stuff to deliver of their own and after “Community Property” and the Guitar Solo by Satchel we got another new tune with “If You Really, Really Love Me”. The banter while slightly different played mostly the same with the lead singer’s intelligence being called into question almost as much as the bass player’s sexual preference. Michael Starr remained one through it all and whenever he spoke Lexi fixed his hair, checked his makeup and blew kisses to the audience.
While there was a good amount of jokes going on the band seemed to almost be playing to their own legendary history and were coming off as a tried and true eighties band who also employed some humor in their set. I wonder if this will work for them in the long run. As the night drew closer to an end we got some acoustic madness with “Girl From Oklahoma” before the audience sing along “Party All Night” led us into the grand finale of “Death To All But Metal”. It was totally an awesome show and one that proved that the bands joke still had a lot of laughs to it and that everyone wanted to be a guest at the party. Seeing this gig being as sold out as quickly as it had did make me slightly sad for some of the shows where there is a dismal draw. The kitsch stuff is a lot of fun my friends but let’s keep in mind to support the acts that really need your attention lest they not be able to return. Still, if catchy tunes with a comedic flair are up your alley you should try to catch Steel Panther at least once. I am sure they will be back again soon considering the response that they got this evening. Tonight would make my second show in a row at this venue and tomorrow I would be back for more as Firewind arrived with Arsis. There were other shows on the horizon but with the NY Comic Con beginning on Thursday I would be passing on them.
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Official Web Site: www.steelpantherrocks.com
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