On The Prowl

Steel Panther Inc.
rating icon 8 / 10

Track listing:

01. Never Too Late (To Get Some Pussy Tonight)
02. Friends With Benefits
03. On Your Instagram
04. Put My Money Where Your Mouth Is
05. 1987
06. Teleporter
07. Is My D**k Enough (feat. Dweezil Zappa)
08. Magical Vagina
09. All That And More
10. One Pump Chump
11. Pornstar
12. Ain't Dead Yet
13. Sleeping On The Rollaway

STEEL PANTHER may be known as a spoof glam band, but that title doesn't do them justice. The group got their start on the Sunset Strip back in the early 2000s and painstakingly built a name for themselves playing regular shows at the Viper Room and Key Club and working their own originals into sets of hair metal hits.

Now, STEEL PANTHER are on their sixth studio album, "On The Prowl", which is their first to feature new bassist Spyder. The album marks the band's follow-up to 2019's "Heavy Metal Rules" and offers cheeky, over-the-top comedic glam metal in PANTHER tradition. With song titles such as "Pornstar" and "Magical Vagina", this isn't an album to crank around the kiddies. But, then again, it's STEEL PANTHER: What did you expect?

"On the Prowl" begins with "Never Too Late (To Get Some Pu**y Tonight)", a full-on '80s dance song complete with synthesizers and sweeping stadium rock guitars. Think STYX or JOURNEY with heavier instrumentation and dirtier vocals. The tune starts the album with a raunchy bang, as vocalist Michael Starr sings about getting lucky on a Saturday night and even referencing the band's former bassist, Lexxi.

"Friends With Benefits" is next, bringing raging guitar licks and upbeat rhythms, ala lead guitarist Satchel and drummer Stix Zadinia, respectively. One of the stronger songs on the set, the chorus for "Friends with Benefits" is hugely catchy, with big hooks and glam-inflected vocals. A highlight comes about a minute and a half in, when Satchel lays down a memorable, shredding guitar solo.

STEEL PANTHER may sound straight out of the '80s, but they keep things modern and even go down the Instagram rabbit hole with "On Your Instagram". In the ballad, Starr professes his love for an angel that he found on the social network, only to find out she looks way different in person. He sings of her beautiful filters and wanting to be with the girl who's on Instagram as opposed to IRL.

Things ramp back up with "Put My Money Where Your Mouth Is", a jam-y, party-happy song with another cool guitar solo. "1987" follows, a reflective tune which sees Starr yearning for 1987, wondering why he didn't realize he was in his prime then and looking back on how rock music was at the top of its game.

"Teleporter" and "One Pump Chump" add more open-throttled glam rock to "On the Prowl", while "Pornstar" and "Magical Vagina" help STEEL PANTHER meet their power ballad quota. The power pop-infused "All That And More" is the band's DEF LEPPARD moment, while the bare-bones "Ain't Dead Yet" is their "November Rain". "Sleeping On The Rollaway" rounds out the set with another arena-ready pop-metal song.

STEEL PANTHER never take themselves seriously, but they do care about their music, and that's clear here. Diehard fans who love their dirty glam rock will find plenty to enjoy here, and casual listeners passing through should also appreciate the band's ridiculous humor and sharp songwriting. It's fun, filthy, rowdy: It's STEEL PANTHER.

Author: Anne Erickson
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