Hammersmith Eventim Apollo

Steel Panther

In this day and age of political correctness, it is sometimes nice just to throw caution to the wind and go to a Steel Panther gig, where the rulebook gets completely thrown out of the window. Tonight the American hellraisers are performing at the Hammersmith Apollo (Or Hammersmith Odeon as I still call it), as part of their “Lower the Bar” European Tour and the gig is totally sold out. The venue, after a recent refit, can now accommodate a large standing area with the stalls seating removed. It gives the place a very different feel and is very reminiscent of Brixton Academy with its sloping floor. Tonight before the headliners take to the stage there are two top-notch support bands to get the party started.

The first of these is Toby Jepson’s “Wayward Sons” and it is clear plenty of people have made to the effort to get in early to catch their set. The band have recently released their debut album “Ghosts of Yet to Come” which is full of some really great songs. The band kick off with the uplifting “Alive” and much of the audience sing along with the band in a celebratory way. Toby and guitarist Sam Wood combine to make a big guitar sound that is more than complemented by their rhythm section of Nic Wastell on bass and Phil Martini on drums. The band pay their own tribute to “Fast Eddie” of Motorhead who passed away this week, with a storming version of “Something Wrong”. Their set ends far too quickly with the epic Planet Rock favourite “Until the End”, which leaves the very appreciative crowd wanting more.

Wayward Sone
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Next up are Inglorious, a band that have been making many waves across the UK Rock scene since forming in just 2014. The five-piece band arrive on stage to a huge welcome from the excited crowd; kicking off with “Read All About It”, the band’s huge 70’s-tinged sound beautifully fills this atmospheric venue. Frontman Nathan James continues to astound people with his powerfully soulful sounding vocal delivery. The band bring with them masses of energy and an infectious, enthusiastic delivery that has the audience thoroughly enjoying every second of their set. With songs like the brilliant “Change is Coming” and the riff-laden “I Don’t Need Your Loving” the band really impress and I’m sure that it won’t be long before Inglorious are headlining this venue themselves.

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Tonight there is an amazing atmosphere in the air and as the roadies set the stage; the Steel Panther fans, some of whom are in fancy dress (Including a chap in a rubber suit and gimp mask) are practically bubbling over with excitement. Showtime soon comes and as the awesome foursome arrive on stage, the whole of the Hammersmith Apollo are up on their feet with their hands in the air singing “Eyes of a Panther” in beautiful unison with the band. After the first number the band stop for about 10 minutes and chat to the crowd with some hilarious x-rated banter. Men and women are willingly hoisted onto each otherís shoulders so they can all proudly show off their chests to the band.

With hilariously titled tunes like “Goin’ in the Back door” and “Poontang Boomerang” these guys really know how to entertain the crowd with some seriously amazing musicianship and songwriting. Taking their inspiration from some of the American glam bands of the eighties like Poison, Bon Jovi, Mˆtley Cr¸e and Van Halen the success of Steel Panther is in danger of eclipsing the bands that originally inspired them. During “17 Girls in a Row” the band give an open invitation to any girls to come and join them on stage. There is a mass invasion which sees hundreds of Rock chicks of all ages, shapes and sizes being passed over our heads onto the stage where they all get their 3 minutes of fame rocking out with the band.

Steel Panther
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The band finish with their anthem “Death to all but Metal” before leaving the stage. Their audience though are still in a celebratory mood and are not ready for their night to end yet. The band rewarded the crowd for the fantastic support with a storming encore of “Community Property” where once again the whole of the Apollo crowd sings back the chorus at the tops of their voices. The final song of the night “Party All Day”, a blatant rip-off of a Bon Jovi classic finishes off the evening perfectly. Michael, Satchel, Lexxi and Stix bid their farewells to the crowd and leave the stage having delivered a show that the likes of Hammersmith have not seen in a very long while.

Set List
Steel Panther
Eyes of a Panther
Goin’ in the Backdoor
Asian Hooker
Tomorrow Night
Wasted Too Much Time
Poontang Boomerang
Guitar Solo
That’s When You Came In
Weenie Ride
17 Girls in a Row
Death to All but Metal

Community Property
Party All Day (Fuck All Night)

Read All About It
Change Is Coming
Taking the Blame
I Don’t Need Your Loving
Holy Water
Until I Die

Wayward Sons
Killing Time
Small Talk
Something Wrong
Until the End



Words, Videos & Pictures by Dave Chinery (Chinners)

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