STEEL PANTHER / INGLORIOUS / WAYWARD SONS - Rock City, Nottingham 23.01.18

LINDSAY SMITH-BOAM

 

It is a strange mix of bands when you look at the line-up for this tour; Wayward Sons, Toby Jepson’s new project, Toby being one of the most respected men in British rock; Inglorious who have proved their magnificence with their second chart topping album, Inglorious II; and Steel Panther, the kings of parody and banter. One thing that was a certainty, it was going to be a night of music and mayhem.

 

As the crowd, adorned with mullets, lycra leopard print and bandanas packed out Rock City, Wayward Sons entered the stage to their now familiar Johnny Cash intro before grabbing everyone’s attention with their opening song ‘Alive’. This band has seen Mr Jepson move back in a heavier direction and the superb drumming from Phil Martini and bad ass bass from Nic Wastell really do throw down the thuds and get the crowd bouncing along to tracks from their rather excellent first album, ‘Ghosts Of Yet To Come’. ‘Ghost’ is a definite fan favourite and the number of Wayward fans in the crowd became more evident as the evening unfurled. Tracks from their album including ‘Don’t Wanna Go’, ‘Killing Time’ and ‘Crush’ added to the feel-good atmosphere of the night and the level of energy on stage was infectious as the crowd bounced along.

 

Toby worked the crowd hard, delighting many by announcing their scheduled appearance at Download. Totally deserved if tonight was anything to go by. Sam Wood makes his guitar soar and riff its way through some great songs, Toby’s voice sounds better than ever, strong and melodic even after bouncing his way around the stage with his flying V, it just doesn’t falter. Keyboard player Dave Kemp was not on duty for this tour but the songs sounded well rounded and full despite his absence.

 

With a couple of nights of the tour left, I won’t give the full set list but the short set was played out in spectacular style with ‘Until The End’ which has become an anthem for the band and their fans. With dates for their headline tour to be announced in the very near future, Wayward Sons made many new fans and set the tone for the night ahead.

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As the ‘Superstars’ intro was played, the crowd surged forward as the many Inglorious fans in the room vied for a view of their boys. ‘Read All About It’ from Inglorious II opened the set. The track packs a punch, catchy sounding with killer grooves from Colin Parkinson on Bass and Phil Beaver on Drums.  It’s a mighty fine melody and looking round the crowd there was a lot of lip synching and head nodding going on. A strong one to open with!

 

No let up as the opening riff of ‘Breakaway’ blasted through the amps. Nathan James is the perfect frontman, a big personality with a big voice and a range we are becoming familiar with, he really does put his voice through its paces but it sounds pitch perfect. ‘Change Is Coming’ slows things down a little, a lovely track. Time to go all fan girl as my favourite song from the two albums hits my ears. ‘Warning’ is hard and heavy, it’s got the lot!

 

Drew Lowe is firmly established in the band now, a solid player and his personality is starting to come through in his style: precise and flowing. What can I say about Andreas Erikkson other than he is a sublime player and it’s his lead guitar that gives the completion and complementation to Nathan’s vocal. A well-deserved main stage slot was announced by Download shortly before the guys took to the stage, they seemed delighted and I am truly delighted for them. Finishing the 8 song, 30 minute set with ‘Holy Water’, and with most of the sold out venue singing with them, Inglorious again proved why success has come calling on their door. Awesome job guys.

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Then for the main ‘act’. Steel Panther are the epitome of glam 70s, 80s, 90s hair metal but with parody, comedy, political in-correctness and great songs! Michael Starr and Satchel immediately start gesturing to each other, involving members of the audience and that’s before they’ve started the set.

 

Opening with ‘Eyes of a Panther’, it’s then that you actually realise these guys really can play. They are a band! Stix is a very strong drummer, Lexxi can funk that bass up, Satchel is a riff ripping guitarist, and Michael has an astounding voice. Unleashing the banter on the audience and on bassist Lexxi Foxx, who is relentlessly tormented throughout the evening, the guys amuse everyone with their stories and humour but truly entertain with their so well-known songs. The crowd were there to have a good time, lapping up dubious tales and not minding the overtly sexist remarks and comments (aimed at both ladies and gents) in the least. Describing in detail how a rock star avoids becoming a baby daddy was a memorable and more than entertaining moment.

 

‘Goin’ in the Backdoor’, ‘Asian Hooker’, ‘Tomorrow Night’, ‘Livin’ On A Prayer’ the songs kept coming and so did the fun. Energetic, skilful and true professionals, the night progressed with a blistering guitar solo set from Satchel. He can play anything and play it well. ‘Breaking the Law’, ‘Rock You Like A Hurricane’, ‘The Trooper’, ‘Enter the Sandman’, ‘Paranoid’, ‘Ironman’ are all in his repertoire.

 

If you haven’t seen Steel Panther you really should. It isn’t a gig, it’s entertainment and some of it involves lots of the female members of the audience and some males, getting up on stage to perform with the band. ‘17 Girls In A Row’ was actually more like 50 as the music continued. ‘Gloryhole’, ‘Death to All but Metal’ had the crowd at pure party pitch, beer and other liquids flying through the air. Closing the night with ‘Party All Day’ Steel Panther left the party with their iconic status still intact. The lyrics are dubious, the hair downright scary but a couple of things are always guaranteed.  The band will sound great and you will laugh until you cry.

 

To check out more from the bands follow the links below:

 

https://store.steelpantherrocks.com/collections/lower-the-bar

http://inglorious.com/

http://www.waywardsonsband.com/

 

 

**PHOTOS ARE NOT TO BE USED WITHOUT THE PRIOR CONSENT OF DOWN THE FRONT MEDIA. PLEASE DIRECT ALL MEDIA ENQUIRIES TO INFO@DOWNTHEFRONTMEDIA.COM**

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