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Steel Panther - On The Prowl review


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Band: Steel Panther
Album: On The Prowl
Release date: February 2023

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 Dick 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

A real throwback album... you'll be throwing it back to where it came from. 

Politics, poignancy and subtlety: these are words that are never associated with Steel Panther, a band who quantum leaped back to the Sunset Strip of the 1980s and have since been on a quest to emerge back into the modern era, with each successive album being the latest leap they hope will bring them home. This time, the band have leaped into the neon phase of the 1980s with On The Prowl, while still stuck in the bodies of glam rockers and living the life of a glam band in the 21st century. 

Why was I willing to pick up a Steel Panther album, you may ask? Well, it's been a while since I've listened to them and, although a leopard doesn't change its spots, I thought maybe a panther might. Alas, this was as misguided as many a glam band's forays into grunge in the 90s, as Steel Panther are much the same as before. It's ironic that the band's career is mirroring the fortunes of the genre they're lampooning, starting off fresh and exciting, but over a decade on and the material is wearing thinner than Jon Bon Jovi's voice.  

On The Prowl will possibly get a wry smile out of you occasionally on the first few spins ("On Your Instagram" and the 'no one understands crypto' line in "Put My Money Where Your Mouth Is" did get a chuckle out of me), but befalls the same issues that most comedy albums do; the same joke isn't funny after several repetitions (or in Steel Panther's case, several albums), and in the case of some songs ("Is My Dick Enough" being a prime example), they aren't even funny the first time, leaving you to either shut out the lyrics and listen to the instrumentals, or to walk away entirely. It got to the point that I had blurred the singing out to the extent that on "One Pump Chump" I thought he was saying "honk, honk", leading to some confusion and a snap back to listening to the tired lyrics once more. 

The usual caveat applies to On The Prowl as it does for the rest of their discography; the band are competent and skilful at what they do musically, it's just a shame that it's wasted potential for the most part. There are moments like "Teleporter" and "Ain't Dead Yet" where you can sit back and enjoy the music without cringing, Steel Panther showing their overshadowed skills as songwriters. Heck, "1987" may not be the most catchy ode to a year in music (see Bowling For Soup's "1985") but it does answer one important question: Starr is a fan of the DLR era of Van Halen, and not the Hagar version. 

What I'd like to see is for Steel Panther to evolve their shtick, and produce an album that parodies many a glam band's attempts at a grunge album, for them to do an OTT version of a grunge album and lampoon the likes of Jerry Cantrell instead of Nikki Sixx again. Alas, On The Prowl sees the band age about as well as Vince Neil instead. 

It's Steel Panther doing what Steel Panther does; if the joke wore thin long ago, then you have little reason to listen to On The Prowl.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 7
Songwriting: 4
Originality: 3
Production: 7

Written on 04.03.2023 by Just because I don't care doesn't mean I'm not listening.


Comments: 2   Visited by: 97 users
05.03.2023 - 10:13

At least they are having fun
05.03.2023 - 11:41
A Nice Guy
It's never been a band to take seriously, but I enjoy them to a degree so I will probably listen to this at some point.

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