Van Halen – Tattoo

The new Van Halen song is pretty average. The video is even worse as David Lee Roth looks silly as an old rocker.


Big Plans for Van Halen in 2012

It’s not quite geezer rock, but Van Halen with original front man David Lee Roth is definitely a blast from the past. But in today’s fragmented music scene, the older legends still command plenty of attention as they can attract both older fans and young kids to sell out arenas and stadiums. That’s even more true overseas.

We don’t know all their plans for 2012, but it looks like Van Halen is gearing up for a big year that will feature a new album along with a monster tour. According to Rolling Stone they are planning a sneak peak this week:

Journalists across New York have been invited to a Van Halen concert at the Cafe Wha? in Greenwich Village this Thursday. Though nothing is official, word is the band are going to perform a 45-minute set. The group hasn’t played in public since the end of their 2007/’08 reunion tour with original frontman David Lee Roth, though they have been rehearsing for their upcoming world tour at the Roxy in Los Angeles for the past few months. A new album is in the works, and a new image released by the band has the date 2.7.12 on it. A new video and single is expected to hit sometime this month. The tour goes on sale January 10th.

Van Halen will definitely be one of the touring acts that gets a lot of buzz in 2012 and you can get concert tickets here and see who will be touring. Roger Waters is another classic rocker who will be jamming venues in 2012. Hopefully it will be a great year for concert fans.


Steel Panther: Feel the Steel

RIYL: Spinal Tap, Poison, songs about loose women

The emergence of hair metal parody band Steel Panther in today’s musical climate is enough to cause the space/time continuum to collapse on itself. “The Wrestler” showed us that there is an entire generation of people who love hair metal in a non-ironic way (unlike, say, Ellen Page’s character in “Whip It,” who wears her mother’s Stryper T-shirt as a joke), which means that a talented hair metal band has a legitimate shot at scoring a left-field hit.

So what to make, then, of a hair metal band 20 years past the genre’s sell-by date, sporting chops to the heavens…but a juvenile lyrical streak that borders on contempt? That is the conundrum that surrounds Feel the Steel, the new album by Steel Panther, the artists formerly known as Danger Kitty and Metal Skool. There is no question that they can play, and their knockoffs of more legitimate (but no less cheesy) hair metal songs are spot-on (expect Jon Bon Jovi’s lawyers to sue for the royalties to “Party All Day” in 3…2…1…). But hot damn, does the joke get old quickly, and they can kiss any chance of appealing to the fairer sex goodbye with tale after tale of misogyny. If the object of singer Michael Starr’s desire isn’t a hooker (“Asian Hooker”), she’s a stripper (“Stripper Girl”), or fat (“Fat Girl”), a small-town piece of ass (“Girl from Oklahoma”), or just plain ugly (“Turn Off the Lights”). Starr knows no fidelity (“Community Property,” “Eatin’ Ain’t Cheatin'”), dedicates a chorus to the phrase “two in the pink and one in the stink” (“The Shocker”), and finishes the “More Than Words” knockoff “Girl from Oklahoma” with the words “Yeah, suck it, bitch.” Wow.


All right, we get what they’re doing here. The original wave of hair metal was littered with songs about underage girls, partying, and partying with underage girls, and Steel Panther is simply taking a Zen approach to it all by also addressing the cheating, the drugs, and the sharing of STDs that those guys chose not to sing about. Ha ha, very cute. The problem is that it loses its impact roughly halfway through the album, and the talk of blowing loads, lube, and mimicking blowjob sounds distracts from the band’s better qualities, namely Starr’s ability to impersonate nearly every singer from the hair metal era. (His David Lee Roth is the best, for the record.) Our suggestion: trim the number of songs about, um, trim in half, and focus on other topics, like what a drag it is to have Satan for a master – there is surely a parallel between being one of Satan’s minions and being a teenager with an overbearing dad – or even better, sing about something so far over the heads of most metal acts (quantum physics, for example) that the songs can stand on their own, rather than in the shadows of their predecessors.

Feel the Steel is good for a laugh, but there isn’t anything here that you – or even Steel Panther – will be playing ten years from now. It is purely an of-the-moment guilty pleasure, though it could have been so much more. Pity. (Island 2009)

Steel Panther MySpace page
Click to buy Feel the Steel from Amazon