I had the pleasure of attending one of the best shows of 2018 this past Thursday. Three amazing acts were set to perform, and I was as excited as a kid in a candy store. Since I had seen all three before, I knew I was going to have a great night, but it was even better than I expected. The atmosphere, the crowd, and all the behind-the-scenes people made this show stand apart from the rest. And of course, I can’t fail to mention Indy’s best promoter Dahlia Presents for bringing this show to Indy. Promoting shows is fun, but it’s tons of work. Hats off to you and your team, because Indy would rock a lot less without you.
By the end of the evening, I could barely walk from dancing all night, which is the way it should be after a show. DJ Wrathchild is hands-down the most metal DJ I have ever seen. His involvement with music doesn’t end at DJing; he has been in a few bands and currently provides vocals for local thrashers Sacred Leather. He plays such a good mix of songs that the audience can’t help but sing along and dance. You can really tell he has a passion for music and puts thought into his mix of songs. The whole time he was spinning music, the light and smoke show on stage was incredible as well. I love how hyped the crowd gets when I see him, too. Being able to pull everyone in and keep their attention for a set while you spin music you are passionate about has got to be the best gig around. I look forward to seeing him again and dancing and singing like there is no one watching because that is what should happen when you see him.
Wilson was next, and I was blown away by their set. I actually saw them open up for Steel Panther two years ago and have followed them since. The first time I saw them they were good but still not completely polished. However, on this tour they blew me away. They have an incredible stage presence and had the audience screaming their lyrics the whole set. I feel like I watched them morph from a young caterpillar into a badass butterfly of metal. One of my favorite things about following new artists is watching them make that jump, and Wilson took the leap and then some. Their new music really shows how unique they are and that they have their own sound. I was also thrown back to my high school days as they did a cover of the 90’s hit “Tubthumping” by Chumbawamba. They completely crushed it, and their energy could be felt through the room. They also made it a point to come out and meet with fans after their set and graciously spoke to people like they were old friends. They also took pictures with people with their Wilson photo prop. If you haven’t checked them out you should pick up their new album Tasty Nasty.
Steel Panther have been around so long and have remained true to their weirdness and vulgarity. Not many bands push the limits the way they do and have made it this far. This tour is basically a throwback to honor what got them popular, and sets are filled out with covers and their wild ways. They have gotten a lot of negative feedback online over focusing more on covers this tour than their original music, but I think any fan that has really watched them from the beginning understands that the point of this tour was to pay respect to what made them famous. Lexxi Foxx is sitting this tour out, but his replacement fit right in and was every bit a part of the antics as the rest of the band. One of the coolest things Steel Panther does is to invite women from the audience on stage to dance during a couple of songs. This show was no different and it is always fun watching fans dance on stage with them. They then broke into a comical speech about not bringing your wife or girlfriend to the show leading up to them playing “Community Property.” They tour a lot but always manage to bring energy and excitement to every show.
Overall it was just a perfect show. The bands all paired well together, and I hope Wilson and Steel Panther tour together at least once more. The Old National Center is an amazing venue with some of the friendliest staff I have ever seen. The Egyptian Room where the concert was held is also one of my favorite places to see a show. It definitely lives up to its name with a lot of art and wall decor. I look forward to the next show and the next review, so until then thank you for reading.