The Fillmore Detroit was taken over by Steel Panther for their 2017 Girls In A Row Tour along with Detroit natives Wilson, all put on by WRIF.
Wilson opens the night, immediately launching into “Give ‘Em Hell” off their hit album Right To Rise. Since their inception in 2010, these party animals have toured the country with acts such as Gwar, Trivium, Scorpion Child, Breaking Benjamin, Trivium, and Sevendust, as well as playing many festivals such as Riff Fest, Dirt Fest, Warped Tour, and more. They have two albums under their belt, Full Blast Fuckery and Right To Rise, and are in the process of recording their third.
From the first note, Wilson doesn’t hold back any punches. Enthusiastic frontman and vocalist Chad Nicefield takes control of the stage, belting out gritty and raw vocals. Guitarists Jason Spencer and Kyle Landry hold either side of the stage, delivering brutal riffs while headbanging with the crowd. James Lascu’s bluesy, pounding bass and Matt Puhy’s booming drums make Wilson’s sound reverberate through your chest. The setlist primarily takes from Right To Rise, with the fierce “All My Friends”, bluesy rock tune “The Flood”, soaring “I Am The Fly”, and more. They also make sure to honor Full Blast Fuckery with “College Gangbang”, and even treat the crowd to an unreleased track from the new album, “Wrong Side of History” which has an almost anthemic sound to it. One of the highlights was their thrashy cover of Nazareth’s “Hair of the Dog”.
They are a wild time from start to finish, excelling in powerful, crazy hard rock and even crazier shows. You could feel the pride they had in playing for their hometown, and the crowd was completely enthralled, throwing fists in the air and moshing throughout the venue. Near the end of the set, Nicefield took to the crowd, working his way through the main floor, high-fiving everyone he could, all while never missing a note.
Wilson closes out the night with “Susan Jane”, a track from their first album. Right before the solo, Nicefield shouts “See you later,” and disappears backstage, only to reemerge with a giant marching band drum. He banged on the drum a few times for emphasis before using it as a riser to perform the last few notes atop of.
These hometown rockers are a perfect band for Detroit. They are badass, proud, and full of fun and power. You never tire of seeing this band. Be sure to keep an ear out for their latest album.
The crowd explodes into cheers as the all too familiar call of the panther roared out as Steel Panther erupts onto the stage with the hit “Eyes of a Panther”. This band is infamous for their heavy metal prowess, their overly 80’s aesthetic, and their over the top raunchy songs and humor. They are over the top, make no apologies, and have a blast at every show. With five albums under their skintight spandex, they have been celebrating the release of Lower the Bar while sharing a co-headlining tour with Stone Sour this year. But tonight, they headlined alone, treating the crowd to a 14 song set of all the music, girls, and jokes we could hope for. This band makes an entrance like no other. Michael Starr clad in scarves and leopard tights, thrusting into the crowd as his voice soars over the room, Satchel with his dizzying guitar solos while making obscene hand gestures and spitting picks into the crowd, Lexxi Foxx preening and posing with his fabulous pink and purple tights and thumping bass, and finally Stix Zadinia mounting the drums and thundering throughout the entire night.
As funny and adult-oriented as their music is, you cannot deny the talent behind the comedy with this band. The lyrics are clever, and the members are all fantastic masters of their craft. Their talent is showcased in their setlist, including songs from their entire career, such as “Poontang Boomerang”, “Gloryhole”, “Community Property”, and more. Later in the night, Satchel took the stage for a while to deliver his legendary guitar solo, culminating in him playing the drums as he shreds.
One of the best things about Steel Panther is how they joke and interact with one another and the crowd. It didn’t take long for the band to invite a leather-clad Asian fan onstage during “Asian Hooker”. She danced and mooned the crowd, as everyone cheered. After “Turn Out the Lights”, they had the venue go dark like they were all in the biggest vagina ever. Later on, a fan named Laura is pulled from the crowd and serenaded with individual improvised songs from each band member before Starr began the dirty ballad “Girl From Oklahoma”. A Steel Panther show would not be complete without the band pulling up every willing woman for “17 Girls in a Row”. This time, a young fan – under 13 for sure – joined the stage, to which the band yelled at each other to not go near her.
Closing the night, the band breaks out their arguably two top songs “Death To All But Metal” and “Party All Day”. The crowd was covered in sweat and singing along with the band the entire night.
A random passerby would assume that this band’s crude humor and music style would pigeonhole them to the male 80s fanbase, but that is far from the truth. The venue was full of fans of all ages, even kids, and women always seem to outnumber the men at these shows. Their talent and comedy are endearing and addictive, and fans come clamoring back every time the band comes back for a new show. They are a fun and dirty party from beginning to end.
Lower the Bar is available on their website.
Event Date: 08-OCT-2017