Steel Panther at House of Blues in Chicago, IL

An impressive lineup of Steel Panther, Crobot, and Tragedy brought a night of fun, laughter, and energy-filled performances to the House of Blues Chicago.

When we heard there was an opening band for the evening who was an all-metal tribute to the Bee Gees and beyond, it’s fair to say our interest was piqued. We weren’t the only ones. The sold-out House of Blues Chicago was packed almost to capacity before the first of three bands took to the stage, which you don’t often see. But that first band was Tragedy, so that is likely why. 

They were a great addition to the evening’s lineup as they had a quirky sense of humor and an abundance of stage presence to compliment their musicianship which is similar to the feel of the headliners. The premise of an all-metal tribute band to the Bee Gees doesn’t sound like it would work, but boy does it! It is difficult to envisage so all we can really say is to get yourself along early to these shows to experience it for yourself. Their set included covers of the Bee Gees’ “Tragedy,” Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline,” and The Pointer Sisters’ “I’m So Excited.” Talk about a way to open up the evening! 

Next up was Crobot, and to say they brought the energy is an understatement! Despite having limited space on the stage due to the other bands’ equipment, frontman Brandon Yeagley made it appear much bigger than it was, not standing still for a single second of their set. It was exhausting just watching! Yeagley is everything you could wish for in a frontman, energetic, engaging, and extremely entertaining. There was so much going on on stage that at times you didn’t know where to look. Yeagley would jump high in the air while using his mic stand as a huge yo-yo, while on the other side of the stage, guitarist and birthday boy Chris Bishop was entertaining the audience with a back-and-forth of flying guitar picks. 

This was such a fun set that had the audience fully engaged, you would be forgiven for thinking they were the headliners for the evening. But oh no, there was even more to come!

Finally, it was time for Steel Panther to take to the stage. The audience was filled with people wearing neon zebra-print spandex and 80s hair metal wigs. This band is not for the faint-hearted or the easily offended. They were every bit as filthy and inappropriate as we have all come to love and expect from a Steel Panther show. The audience clearly knew what was in store for them and embraced the debauchery with both hands.

Whenever Steel Panther is in Chicago, their shows are always at the House of Blues. It has become somewhat of a ritual now. The night was sold-out by fans desperate to get their filthy fix. Steel Panther were On The Prowl, and the fans were well and truly up for it. 

The risqué banter between songs was lapped up by the eager audience. While the on-stage antics are such a huge part of the act, let’s not take away from just how talented these musicians are. Along with the smut, the pelvic thrusts, and the hilarious lyrics, the musicianship is second to none. The vocal range of Chicago’s own Michael Starr is impressive, to say the least, and Satchel’s face-melting, intricate riffs are nothing short of phenomenal. 

It’s fun to see the new dynamics with the latest inductee as a fully-fledged member of the band’s lineup, Spyder. Spyder stepped in as the band’s bass player when Lexxi was in a sex rehab but is now a full-time member since Lexxi’s departure. This was our first time seeing Steel Panther since Spyder stepped into this permanent role, and it was great to see how well he slots into that position. 

The crowd interaction is another staple for a Steel Panther show which included a member of the audience being brought up on stage to dance during “Asian Hooker.” Throughout the show all members of the band interact with the members of the audience, whether it be fist-bumping the front row, gesticulating with the female attendees, or arranging a hotel-room meet-up after the show. It’s all taken in the good gest in which it is meant. 

If ever there is a show that switches the brain off from your regular life stresses, this is it. If you love 80s hair metal, a good ol’ laugh, and a heavy dose of smut, then this is definitely the show for you! Even if you’ve seen them multiple times, it never gets old. You can trust us on that one! 

There’s still a handful of dates left on this tour before they head over to Europe so do yourself a favor and secure those tickets before they sell out. It’s the fun night out you’ve been waiting for and need. 

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About Kirstine Walton 380 Articles
Kirstine moved from the UK to Chicago in 2011, and has fallen in love with the city and its music scene. She enjoys combining her two biggest passions – music and photography. If there is a band with a guitar playing, chances are she’ll be there…camera in hand. Kirstine went to her first live concert at 7 years old, and hasn’t looked back since!