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Steel Panther – Heavy Metal Rules review

Genre: Glam Rock

Label: Steel Panther Inc

Release Date: September 27th 2019

 

Members:

Michael Starr, Vocals,

Satchel, Guitar,

Lexxi Foxx, Bass,

Stix Zadinia, Drums,

 

Track Listing: 

1. Zebraman
2. All I Wanna Do Is F*** (Myself Tonight)
3. Let’s Get High Tonight
4. Always Gonna Be A Ho
5. I’m Not Your B****
6. F*** Everybody
7. Heavy Metal Rules
8. Sneaky Little B****
9. Gods Of Pussy
10. I Ain’t Buying What You’re Selling

It’s impossible not to grin whilst writing this. The British smut laden sense of humour that first manifested itself on seaside postcards decades ago, was wrapped into the scripts found in every Carry On.. movie [Oooooh Matron!] during the 60s and 70s and expanded to some of the bluest comedians during the 80s has left the country full of people more than happy to snigger at knob gags and fart jokes.

Combine that with our love of music and Steel Panther bring the whole [bulging] package to the smut loving Brits. Our desire for the Californian lifestyle, love of dick jokes and our unflappable [pffftt… flaps] rejection of political correctness regardless of what the media says we ‘should’ act like means that a new album from Starr, Lexxi, Satchel and Stix is almost guaranteed a home run.

Love them or hate them, Steel Panther are a global phenomenon. There’s no disputing the talent present in the foursome, the band, originating as Metal Shop then Metal Skool before settling on Steel Panther had been performing in Hollywood on Sunset Strip for years as a true 80s covers act with the odd original song thrown in. Those residencies helped hone their style and the banter that they effortlessly fire at each other during a live show and the end result has seen the band sitting high on festival bills and headlining their own shows in arenas around the world.

Of course nostalgia plays a huge part in their popularity and our love of the golden era of rock music that saw Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, Europe, Ratt, Dokken, Scorpions and more riding the crest of a golden Jack Daniels infused wave of popularity where the girls loved the fact that the bands looked more like them than they did and the boys dressed up the same to attract those girls.

I for one make no apology for the love of a chorus, a screaming guitar solo and hooks I can hang my [leather studded] codpiece on. Thankfully Steel Panther deliver these in style (and the codpieces) and the latest album ‘Heavy Metal Rules’ obeys the ‘if it ain’t broke’ rule to dish up 10 tracks of hook laden filth that The Guardian newspaper will claim is dragging society backwards not forwards.

If you haven’t heard the band before, are sensitive to naughty words [dick, pussy, bitch etc..] and innuendo and get triggered when people suggest there are only two genders…. stop reading, get out the placards and spray cans and paint “All men who identify as non-female are offspring without a parent who identify as male” [All Men are Bastards…. just in case I need to mansplain it for you honey!] or some shit…

For those people who couldn’t care less about the content and want to enjoy a catchy tune and a laugh and giggle with their friends, then songs about metal, women [specifically bitches] and sex will be right up their street.

The album commences with an interesting marker in the sand. “Zebraman”, an interviewee on the “Heavy Metal Parking Lot” documentary talks about his love of the music and why everything else sucks.

“Heavy metal rules, all that punk shit sucks. It doesn’t belong in this world, it belongs on fucking Mars man… What the hell is that Punk shit? And Madonna can go to hell as far as I’m concerned, she’s a dick. Seriously heavy metal definitely rules. Twisted Sister, Judas Priest, Dokken, Ozzy, Scorpions…they all rule!”.

It sets the scene perfectly and if it’s straight talking you’re looking for then the song segues straight into the first single from the album “All I Wanna Do Is Fuck (Myself Tonight)”.

Set in Vegas and containing enough extra scenes to comes across like a spoof of ‘The Hangover’ you’ll be singing along to this in public and wondering why you’re getting strange looks from the Salvation Army collection squad on the high street before you realise just what you’re waxing lyrical about.

A deceptive drum intro lulls us into a false sense of security before the fattest riff launches “Let’s Get High Tonight”. Coke, Shrooms and the message to just enjoy yourself because Mom , Dad and the Cops are not around…. if looked at in depth comes across as rather creepy (the intended recipient is clearly a girl) but it’s too hooky, too catchy and too much fun to worry about small things like that.

In the same vein, a soft acoustic guitar starts the delivery of ‘The Ballad’, the track that would always get bands like this the top spot in the charts back in the day. Of course Steel Panther take it to the extreme and we get a love song called “Always Gonna Be a Ho”. Again.. listen to the lyrics, laugh, take it for what it is… “has your vagina ever seen the shade?” purrs Michael Starr and just drink some more Jack.

“Doesn’t matter if you’re hot, doesn’t matter if you’re cold, doesn’t matter if you’ve got your vagina plated in gold…” 

Everything is geared towards a live show. Every song will come across [your face] perfectly in the live environment and the fact that Satchel [Russ Parrish] played with Rob Halford’s band Fight, recording the “War of Words” album also means that the playing can really ratchet it up when needs be. “I’m Not Your Bitch” is ‘HEAVY’ with riffs that Dave Mustaine would be happy to put on a Megadeth album. The crunch is also partly down to the production and Jay Ruston (Anthrax, Stone Sour) should stand up and take a bow for making this sound as big as it does.

The rest of the album follows in a similar [fat throbbing purple] vein and with tracks like “Fuck Everybody” and the title track with the wonderful line of “Heavy metal rules, and everybody else can suck my dick”, this isn’t an album that’s going to challenge you. We’re not talking Dream Theater here. There are no 25 minute epics, instead it’s an album that makes you yearn for the beach, the sun and hot bodies [of either sex] in tight outfits that show the curves in all the right places.

Of course if you’re all about the injustices of the modern world and how women are represented in media then you’ll be spitting [not swallowing] feathers by now. When the band lands a sucker punch of “Sneaky Little Bitch” and “Gods of Pussy” late on in album, then the placards that you’d started painting at the beginning of the album will be brought out and the protests will begin. I’m not one for violent protests but I imagine it would go something like this:

All in all, what’s not to like. The world is too serious by a long [cum] shot. Steel Panther dismiss everything and focus on having a good time without a care. And why the hell not?

To sum up the album in the words of Michael Starr on the title track;

“Heavy metal rules and everyone else can suck my fuckin’ dick….” 

Score: 9/10

Reviewer: Adrian Hextall

Preceding the release of ‘Heavy Metal Rules’, Steel Panther play an album launch show at the world-famous Whisky A Go Go in West Hollywood, California on Thursday 26th September.

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