On an unbelievably warm December 22nd in Cincinnati, I stopped in at the city’s favorite rock hall, Bogart’s. Three nights before Christmas, comedy gold was the gift about to be bestowed upon the Bogart’s patrons. The sold-out Spreading The Disease (S.T.D.) Tour featuring Steel Panther, Lift The Medium, and Hillbilly Herald landed in the Queen City. Metal heads, gold diggers, Asian hookers and Fanthers alike had visions of spandex, aqua net, bandanas, sunglasses, ripped jeans and glammed-up men dancing in their heads. Tonight, Cincinnati returns to the glorious musical days of hair metal!
First up was Cincinnati’s own Lift The Medium. I’ll be honest, they’re a band that I knew NOTHING about before seeing them. In fact, I wasn’t even aware they were on the bill until arriving at the venue. Not knowing what to expect, I watched the show completely open-minded. What was my impression you ask? Well, the setlist was front loaded with what I felt were their best songs. Honestly, that’s the thing to do though, come out and make an impression. The only problem with that is keeping momentum and the crowds interest. Ending the set with a raucous version of Nine Inch Nails classic Closer To God, not only fit Steel Panther’s raunchy agenda, but it certainly won over quite a few fans as well. For a local band playing mainly all original material, I can definitely see the potential here. Lift The Medium are in their infancy as a band, so their set is only going to get better. Playing a pretty tight set on a big stage before a band you hear on the radio, can be hell on the nerves and is certainly not an easy task. With time, I think we’ll see Lift The Medium once again rocking the Bogart’s stage. Good job guys.
View the Lift The Medium photo gallery here.
Next up was Hillbilly Herald. This band, I knew a little about. As a site, we’ve actually covered a few shows they were opening. Now was my chance to see what they bring to the table for myself. With a raw energy, rock star poses, dirty rock and charisma, Hillbilly Herald was honestly pretty impressive. Are they the photogenic kings of the rock world? Not at all, but that’s fine by me. If you follow this site, you know I much prefer good music/musicianship over image EVERYDAY. I was particularly impressed with their song Sucker Punch and they brought down the roof with their cover of AC/DC’s megahit TNT. In fact, Hillbilly Herald’s sound certainly has a lot of the same aspects as the famous band from down under. So if you enjoy the classic rock sound, this band will be right up your alley.
View the Hillbilly Herald photo gallery here.
Well, it was now that time. The time to insert your diaphragms in your earholes, cause Steel Panther was about to make sweet love to ’em. Hitting the stage like the legends (in their own minds) they are, Steel Panther came to violate Sin-Sin-Nasty. Kicking things off with Eyes Of A Panther, the hair was flying, licks were shredded, the balls were touched and the party was on.
Asian Hooker kept the ball(s) rolling. In one of my favorite performances of the night, the band delivered a hip-thrusting, crotch-grabbing performance of a uhhhhh…love affair that goes wrong? I suppose that’ll work. Afterwards the band took the time to introduce each other and played it up. Tons of backhanded compliments and the intent to always smile for the camera.
After tearing through the party anthem Tomorrow Night, Steel Panther took to their most cultural relevant song Just Like Tiger Woods. If you don’t know of Tiger’s legendary extra-marital escapades, I must ask you a question. Do you live under a friggin’ rock? Using Tiger as a heroic example of infidelity, the band and their antics had Cincy eating out of the palm of their hands.
Two new songs were played from the forthcoming album rumored to be titled “All You Can Eat” or the latest rumor I’ve heard “Fuck Dynasty“. First up was the new single Party Like It’s The End Of The World. Now if you’ve seen the video, you’ll know it’s NSFW (not safe for work). If you haven’t and titties don’t offend you, well enjoy it below. The band began bringing young ladies onstage allowing then to dance. Then after Glory Hole, they were given a choice. Show your titties or leave the stage. Let’s just leave it at the fact that Sin-sin-nasty isn’t very bashful. Fan favorites like It Won’t Suck Itself, Eatin’ Ain’t Cheatin’, Let Me Come In and Weenie Ride were thrown into the setlist and kept the party going.
Steel Panther – Party Like It’s The End Of The World:
View the Steel Panther photo gallery here.
One thing that I do want to talk about, is the fact that you do get a lot of in-between songs banter with Steel Panther. Their show is half comedy/half metal. Their gimmick is obvious, BUT make no mistake, these guys are serious players. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to fine better players. Add in the fact that took the absurdity of Hollywood in the ’80’s and took it way over the top and you have comedy/metal gold. For some though, including a couple of dads that were there, it’s a huge shock. So if you can’t check reality at the door, you won’t enjoy Steel Panther’s antics. There is no shame and that’s what makes them who they are.
After igniting the crowd with Death To All But Metal, the band took a quick break before coming back out for their encore. They led it off with an EXTREMELY loud sing-a-long of their hit Community Property. I can say this with confidence, that moment, as loud as it was, shows just how deep the connection that Steel Panther has with their Fanthers. Next up was 17 Girls In A Row. Needless to say, this song is what Steel Panther is all about and certainly left the fans with a great taste in their mouths. (You’re welcome for that one guys.) Closing the set was Party All Day (Fuck All Night) and with this being the last show of their tour, I’m betting that’s exactly their intent. It was an amazing encore and a tremendous way to end the show.
All in all, without giving away much of the act, the band delivered on their larger than life personas. If you dig it, then I’ll leave you with one of Michael Starr’s favorite sayings, “Show Your Boobies!!”