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Steel Panther Album Review

I didn’t even have to read past the first track title of Goin’ In the Back Door (which is about exactly what you think it is) to know that this Steel Panther album wouldn’t let me down. Lower the Bar features more of the Michael Starr falsettos and crazily inappropriate lyrics that fans fell in love with on their debut album, Feel the Steel. With guitar licks and shredding solos that guitarist, Satchel nails every time, Steel Panther’s Lower the Bar certainly did not do as its name suggests.

The parody glam metal band off the Sunset Strip has been winning over fans internationally, including Australia, across their multiple appearances at music festivals, and headline tours that mimic the lewd humour of the band, such as their Spreading the Disease: Down Under tour in 2013.

Though they’ve come far from their 80s-glam band (Bon Jovi, Van Halen, and the likes) parodies, Steel Panther still has a strong glam metal sound, with high falsettos and incredibly intricate guitar solos, but evolved into their own sound that is less directly linked to other bands or songs. This new album fuses their glam inspiration to popular elements in the metal scene, such as groovy, catchy riffs and that angsty 90s attitude which can be heard throughout the album, but particularly on tracks Pussy Ain’t Free, and Walk of Shame.

Steel Panther is definitely not for everybody, but because of the outrageousness of their personas, they mostly get away with their lyrics. Each album seems to have one song, that for me, crosses the line. And my line is probably drawn further in the sand than most. With songs on previous albums like, Handicapped Slut and She’s on the Rag, I guess I just expected to be a little creeped out by at least one of the songs on this new album. All the songs were of a very typical, sexual or drug related nature, but none were that surprising. Anything Goes was very graphic, and just listed a bunch of weird sexual things that the band is prepared to do, but then finishes with “minus Charlie Sheen because I don’t want AIDS”.

Steel Panther’s last album consisted of acoustic covers of popular hits off their other albums. I must say this had much less of an impact, especially the DVD version where Satchel, in his leopard print spandex, ripped singlet, and hair as big as the bass player’s ego, was trying to solo on this clunky acoustic guitar. Lower the Bar is what I needed to be ‘reinfected’ with the Steel Panther bug.

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