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STEEL PANTHER, O2 Academy, Glasgow
28 March 2012

Steel Panther, photo by David Wilson

Sold out signs on the door, some very dubious 80's style attire in evidence and a guy dressed as a hand in the shape of 'The Shocker', it can only mean one thing, Steel Panther are back in town.

Having played an almost show-stealing support set with Motley Crue and Def Leppard on their last visit to Glasgow, this show sold very quickly and on entering the hall I was faced with the biggest crowd I have witnessed in the Academy, the place was rammed to the rafters.

The Treatment, photo by David Wilson

What the capacity crowd were undoubtedly after was a rock show with the emphasis firmly on the fun factor and who better to provide that than Steel Panther, but getting the evening off to a cracking start were The Treatment.

This band appear to be constantly travelling the highways and byways of Europe and beyond and have secured themselves a number of impressive support slots. This was my first encounter with the band and from the opener ' Drink, F**k, Fight' it was easy to see why they are getting the exposure.

The Treatment play heavy rock and play it well, they also have the song writing talents to back it up. I was reminded more than once during the set of early Aerosmith and various homegrown late 70's and early 80's hard rocking bands including UFO and Maiden, classic rock at it's best.

The band played a good mix of their own tracks and a few choice cover versions, the best of which was the old Slade classic ' Get Down And Get With It' which finished off the set in fine style.

The Treatment had achieved their goal and warmed the crowd up nicely, but the temperature rose to fever pitch as the lights went down and the tape rolled for 'In The Future' heralding the entrance of the one and only Steel Panther. Kicking off with 'Supersonic Sex Machine' the crowd erupted, I haven't witnessed a crowd reaction like this in a long time.

Steel Panther, photo by David Wilson

Frontman Michael Starr was in excellent form. He is like Dave Lee Roth and Vince Neil rolled into one, pulling every textbook hair metal move with tongue firmly in cheek and the vocal prowess to match.

'Tomorrow Night' followed, another number from the band's excellent latest album 'Ball's Out' in which the lyrics state that the party is tomorrow night, but by this point the party was well and truly in full swing here and now. the current climate, the world needs a band like Steel Panther, pure unadulterated fun and escapism for 90 minutes; leaving your brain at the door is optional.

Steel Panther, photo by David Wilson

It is easy to write off Steel Panther as a joke band with their larger that life on-stage personas and lyrics that would make a docker blush, but the band are so proficient and their songs so damn catchy that they are way beyond that.

In fact, in the current climate, the world needs a band like Steel Panther, pure unadulterated fun and escapism for 90 minutes; leaving your brain at the door is optional.

Steel Panther, photo by David Wilson

'Fat Girl' and 'Asian Hooker' followed, from the band's first album 'Feel The Steel', and were treated like old friends. Guitarist Satchel was in blistering form and his between song banter with Starr was priceless, if Panther folded they would make a good comedy double act.

The rhythm section of Lexxi and Stix preened and pummelled their way through the set in equal measure, Stix even pulled a Tommy Lee on us by taking to the piano for the song 'Weenie Ride'.

Steel Panther, photo by David Wilson

Steel Panther, photo by David Wilson

The set was a good mix of old and new with the highlights for me being 'Party All Day' with girls invited up from the crowd to dance along and the one-two of a heavy version of 'It Won't Suck Itself' followed by the band's unofficial anthem 'Death To All But Metal' which rounded off the main set, complete with crowd surfing and a circle pit !The guys then returned for two encores, 'Eatin' Ain't Chaetin' and the oh so subtle '17 Girls In A Row' and then took their well deserved bows.

Steel Panther, photo by David Wilson

The party had most definitely been tonight in Glasgow and with the Panther as hosts everyone went home beaming from ear to ear and denched in sweat.

I would encourage any sceptics to check out the band live and see how good they really are, ok I accept that the lyrical content won't be to everyone's taste, but for pure rocking entertainment, you would be hard pushed to find any better.

Review and photos by David Wilson

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