Steel Panther – Lower The Bar
Released: 24th March 2017
Michael Starr – Vocals
Stix Zadinia – Drums/Backing Vocals
Lexxi Foxx – Bass/Backing Vocals
Satches – Guitar/Backing Vocals
Facebook: Steel Panther
As far as bands go with fantastic stage presences and unforgettable shows, Steel Panther are most definitely up there with some of the best! Crowd favourites at Soundwave [RIP] and even on their own headline outings, these masters of novelty glam rock have definitely imprinted themselves on the world, leaving a mark (or in some cases herpes) on fans alike. Their latest offering Lower The Bar has been very slowly making it’s way into the world in the form of singles, music videos premiering on Porn sites and a lot of the same old antics we’ve loved from the guys, but how does the album actually stack up compared to the rest? Well lets jump into it
The album begins with the suggestively titled ‘Goin’ in the Back Door‘ which, as you guessed, is an ode to taking the dirt track when your woman refuses to give you access to her vagina. For those not comfortable with sexual innuendos or even entire songs about having sex, you should probably stop reading now. A slightly basic sounding guitar solo from Satchel accompanying an easy going rock backing behind simple lyrics like “Sometimes the backdoor is the only way in, but you have to get in for the love to begin” round out the opening song and we move into ‘Anything Goes‘ which the boys released for fans back in December and instantly the tempo is lifted but the standard drops with a song about being up for anything (literally anything) in the bedroom whether its painting your cock like a barber poll, sending a go-pro up your arse or even bringing a German Sheppard into the mix! Once you can put aside the joking nature of the band/lyrics you get to hear the quality of rock they’re producing. Satchel is one hell of a guitarist who ends up saving the band halfway though with a top notch guitar solo while front-man Michael Starr can still hit those high notes with ease, once you get past the fact he’s now like that awkward uncle at family gatherings who gets a little too close to the bikini wearing youngsters.
We then move onto the song which generated a stack of publicity when it was released on PornHub earlier in the year ‘Poontang Boomerang‘ and can I just say that was a great way to publicly release a song! I’d love to see the results of all the new fans they accumulated follow this stunt and how many virgins and no-hopers will now frequent Panther shows. Anyway back to the song, if you’ve ever encountered a stage give cling-on who won’t get the point that they’re no longer welcome in your life, here’s a song for them. Starting off quite heavier than the earlier songs and embracing their symbolic misogyny (well, what else would you expect from these guys), the song is actually a fun, catchy as fuck rock anthem complete with plenty of sing-a-long sections that’ll be a sure hit during future live shows. Bringing out the acoustic guitar next for the ballad type ‘That’s When You Came In‘ which has very similar attributes to their fan favourite track ‘Community Property‘ from 2009‘s Feel The Steel album including grossly
inappropriate lyrics in this love song directed towards the one who gives you the best blowie of your life. Michael Starr shines bright throughout this one with his ability to grab your attention and take you on a journey of love… or lust… or maybe just a way to blow your load. Either way if you’re a fan of ballads that progressively turn into a surprise rock song, you’ll get all kinds of moist for this one and what it has to offer.
‘Wrong Side Of The Tracks (Out In Beverly Hills)‘ brings back the fun, faster paced rock with tambourines a plenty. The only thing that would make this song better is an additional cowbell throughout! Take note for your live shows Panther. Surprisingly the next song lives up to it’s name within the first 15 seconds as Lexxi Foxx takes centerstage with a bass solo intro for ‘Now The Fun Starts‘ before Satchel and drummer Stix Zadinia‘s contributions make the track morph into a sexy, smooth groove rock song complete with another exceptional guitar solo and a beat perfect for pelvic thrusting (either horizontal, doggy or in the mosh pit). ‘Pussy Ain’t Free‘ continues the pelvic thrusting theme, except turns the notch up to 11 in this Van Halen sounding devotion to relationships and the difficult struggles they cause (either financial or health wise). ‘Wasted Too Much Time‘ slows things down yet again in what can only be described as a break up son with a different. Usually in songs about bust ups, there’s a theme of desperation and despair lingering and how one half wants the other back and is willing to change… But this is a Steel Panther song, so automatically all that gets thrown out the window in this attack on the other party for their mistakes and faults with lyrics like “I wasted too much time on fucking you, wasted too much money buying shit for you too!” and my personal favourite “your favourite subject is you, whenever you’re here, I’m number 2, get somebody new“. Self-absorbed exes take a listen and realise what you did wrong, then maybe you’ll understand why your arse was dumped.
‘I Got What You Want‘ starts with a very retro themed synth behind a quick paced intro that leads into a somewhat classic rock styled tune which is an obvious nod to the predecessors of rock who helped pave the way for Panther to emerge and succeed whilst mimicking their old behaviours. Think of bands like Journey, Foreigner and The Who and you’ll hear similarities between all of them in this one. As we approach the end of the album ‘Walk of Shame‘ shines a light on the no fucks given women who stand proud and walk out in the street the following morning, after a very wild one night stand. An act that’s usually frowned upon in real life, but those opinions aren’t valid with Steel Panther, in fact they’re supported with encouraging lyrics like”baby sucking lots of dick is so rock and roll” filling you with confidence to walk out in public in last night’s clothes the following morning, without a care in the world. One of the better songs from the album, this will go down in their back catalogue as another fan favourite and pride anthem. The new album is rounded out by the band’s cover of Cheap Trick‘s ‘She’s Tight‘ in what can only be explained as a first for the glam rock revivers who rose to fame covering songs like this back in the day playing at venues like the Viper Room in LA and when they were known as Metal Shop or Metal Skool. Had the boys written songs like this instead of always joking around, they could be taken a bit more serious within the rock community.
Summing it all up, Steel Panther are incredibly talented musicians, all with their own mastered style that compliments each other in a fun loving and joking manner. However and it pains me to say this, like other novelty bands [The Beards, Lonely Island etc] there is only so much you can hear before it all starts sounding the same and the novelty starts to wear off. I don’t think I’m alone in saying that this album is good, but it’s not as memorable as Feel the Steel or 2011’s Balls Out. However, Steel Panther are an act who you can’t just listen to on CD or Record or whatever you use to hear them and what they lack in captive songwriting skills, they wholeheartedly make up for in their live performances and music videos.
Steel Panther – Lower The Bar tracklisting
1. Goin’ In The Backdoor
2. Anything Goes
3. Poontang Boomerang
4. That’s When You Came In
5. Wrong Side Of The Tracks (Out In Beverly Hills)
6. Now The Fun Starts
7. Pussy Ain’t Free
8. Waster Too Much Time
9. I Got What You Want
10. Walk Of Shame
11. She’s Tight
Lower The Bar is out Friday. Pre-Order here