Steel Panther at the House of Blues Las Vegas during the AVN Awards 1/19/2013 with Porn Stars, Pawn Stars and Pantera alumni in attendance

Heavy Metal Hill paid an out-of-town visit to Steel Panther at the House of Blues Vegas on a Saturday night, following the AVN Awards that took place at the Hard Rock Hotel (and no, HMH didn’t attend that event).

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We spotted Vinnie Paul of Pantera fame  on the way into the venue and assumed he’d be playing with the band at some point.  

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The show is free for locals, but costs about $30 from TicketMaster for the “out of towners”.   In addition to tons of locals, there were also a few blow-up dolls in attendance.    

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Just before the curtain opened, you could hear some absolutely screaming guitar leads coming from the stage area.   As always, Satchel was on fire.

The band hit the stage about midnight and shredded though some new songs, some of their “Classics” and the popular metal songs that they usually manage to play much better than the original recording artist. 

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A glimpse upstairs showed Vinnie Paul (red cowboy hat) watching for the upstairs balcony with what looked like Corey Harrison from Pawn Stars.    That would make sense since Vinnie is going to be featured on an upcoming episode of Pawn Stars.   We also heard Rick Harrison was in attendance, but never actually saw him there.

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During Satchel’s guitar solo, he looked upstairs and gave a nod to Vinnie as he played “Walk” on both the guitar and drums.   That rocked.   Russ Parrish is a truly astonishing guitarist.  Don’t let the cheesiness fool you.   Not many can out-shred him or play guitar any better than he can.

 

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At one point in the show, the blow-up dolls made their way onstage.  As expected, Michael Starr did funny things with them and like the women that get up and dance with the band, he kicked them off the stage, only he literally kicked them off the stage.   

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They were their normal rude, insulting and hilarious selves.   Tons of inappropriate jokes and comments that would otherwise incense a person in any other given scenario.   It’s the perfect getaway/ escape from the normally uptight outside world.

And they get extra points for their always good rendition of a Hoobastank clunker.

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Instead of Vinnie Paul, they introduced an adult film star named Houston that formerly held some type of record in the industry.  Good for her??    She kind of resembled the blow-up dolls.     She had on a see-through shirt and brought a friend up onstage later in the show and they danced for a while during the show’s closing song (“Paradise City”).  Cringe.

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This is a great sounding venue and there are definitely advantages over the shows on Sunset (Saturday night instead of Monday night, no opening bands – just them, you can drink alcohol in line before the show, etc. etc.)   Not knowing anyone local to Vegas, it’s hard to judge what the “cooler” crowd is.  Judging from this trip and past Vegas visits, the quality of women is somewhat better on the Sunset Strip.     In our biased opinion, the Vegas heavy metal scene doesn’t seem to hold up well next to the Hollywood metal scene, but this is a must-see show no matter where or when they are playing.    

And at the Mandalay Bay, you even get to see boobs on the way back through the casino.  If you’ve been there, you probably have a picture with this pair near the Shark Reef. 

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