31 October 2011
by Ryan Williams
Steel Panther. Lots of people loved them and lots of people just didn’t like them. It could never be a Marmite thing with these guys because they’re better than the 80s glam metallers they’re aping. Feel The Steel was a wonderfully refreshing collection of cock rock anthems sculpted and moulded over years and years. Balls Out is the LA spandex fans’ second collection of cock rock anthems but this one’s only taken two years.
The good news is that Balls Out is a superbly fun album. It’s almost as if Steel Panther know what they’re doing but there’s nothing here that’s going to keep those belly laughs coming long after you go home. There won’t be any triggers, like when someone says, “…but metal,” or if you ever go to eat sushi. No, but it’s still a fun, silly album. And it’s Steel fucking Panther. Take it while they’re still giving it.
It’s almost certainly the result of having to write a whole new batch of songs in a few months but Balls Out just isn’t as funny, as shocking or as good as Feel The Steel but it’s still fucking funny and full of great songs. Either way, Steel Panther are still going to be fucking brilliant every single time you go and see them live and that’s what really matters. And we’ll always have Feel The Steel.
Levelling a claim that the slut-based humour is too stupid when evening primetime entertainment in this country largely revolves around X Factor these days is silly but the jokes do get a bit one-trick. However, the band made their name on a consistent stream of vagina and sperm-oriented dad jokes, so for them to start focusing on something even more puerile like shit and piss, for instance, or even worse, if they started writing serious love songs… it would be way too weird. We’ll stick with the pussy and spunk for now.
Ultimately, there’s an Iron Maiden song, an Extreme song, a Mötley Crüe song, a Van Halen song, a Bon Jovi song and even a Frank Zappa song as well as a bunch of ridiculous lyrics that mainly revolve around fucking and thinking about fucking. The kind of lyrics none of those bands had the balls to write. You might not love Balls Out but you sure as hell won’t hate it.
Sounds like: Extreme, Mötley Crüe, Van Halen, Bon Jovi, Iron Maiden
Top tracks: the Iron Maiden song obviously
Guitar solo rating: 1,000,000/6 because Satchel is AWESOME