I know a guy, yet I have never met him face to face, yet. He tells me how good this band is. So I go to see them because the opener is a local band that I love. Then since I am getting old and all, I decide to leave because I feel tired. Lame, I know. I missed the band he keeps raving about. Truthfully, I was tired from a long day. But realistically the opening local band is a fave and when their set is just perfect sometimes I ditch the rest of the show to avoid disappointment. A year later the band I missed by choice is announced as the opener for 80’s hair band parody and full on fun time group Steel Panther. The band I chose to miss a year ago was Diemonds and in a way I am glad because as you will read some things happen for a reason.
My wife and I decided to pull a little pub crawl before the show and arrived during The Maysides set, they sounded good and hail from Hamilton. I plan on checking them out further. The London Music Hall has all the potential for a great atmosphere for a show. Two levels with the upper u-shaped balcony looking down onto a massive stage for a club. It was packed already and we briefly looked at the merch table, noticing a vinyl copy of Never Wanna Die from Diemonds. Oh boy, I love vinyl. I ask the drummer if the band will sign it and he assures me they will so I let him know I will check back after their set. He was super cool with that, none of this “buy it now cuz it might be gone later” BS. Impressive! The club lacks any real choice of decent brew and finally has Smirnoff Ice. We head upstairs having never been up there before because on prior shows it was always closed off: lame. It is packed as well. We take a seat on a couch for a bit, once we decide to head back downstairs we find a primo spot on the balcony rail backside: score!
Now taking the stage: Diemonds. Full on kicking hard rock & metal. Daniel on guitar is phenomenal and it has been a long time since I have heard a metal virtuoso that rocks out like this. Up there with Zakk Wylde in my book when it comes to sound and showmanship, love it! Very impressed with Priya’s vocals, she carries the notes to a tee and commands the stage. Aiden provides a backline along with newcomer bassman Tyrone Buccione perfectly as well. I was utterly impressed that my fave three Diemonds songs were played back to back to back, thank you: “Hell is Full”, “Over It”, and “Ain’t That Kinda Girl”. While I have been keeping an eye and ear out on the band since their first release they most definitely notched it up big time with Never Wanna Die. Highly recommend you get to see them. Thanks to Rich “The Meister” Dillon for the constant positive harassment to get to their show! One day we will meet in person. I almost thought about leaving it was so perfect! Alas, we missed the Steel last time they came through London. Our little town is missing so many shows this summer as they pass by we were not giving this one up. I did go back to the merch table and Priya was so gracious in getting the record signed by all except Aiden. As I thanked them and heard “Blackout in the Red Room” (Google it if you don’t know this most amazing song and band) come on the PA I knew that Steel Panther was about to hit the stage. A guy walks by me and blurts out “hey man you grabbed the vinyl, great and thanks”. It was Aiden, the drummer, and he ensured to keep my request by signing it. Cool, this band gets fan appreciation.
So I zoom upstairs, and Steel Panther takes the stage. Fun does not describe it. For the next hour or so I can envision this is the Whiskey or Rainbow anytime from the 1983-1989 era. The band sounds great. If you think they are only a parody you are mistaken, these guys can play and groove circles around most other bands while they do so. The show is a big part for me and Steel Panther delivers. The comedy of Lexxi and his side table is tongue in cheek hilarious; don’t take it so seriously folks. I will allow the video to speak for itself, go see this band. They are fun and sound great live, truly entertaining. Apropos since the evening before I was at a WWE show, my first in fact. Pure entertainment!
– Blair De Abreu