It’s been a little over a year and a half since we last found Y&T delivering some Hard Rock justice in New York City and I have to say that their return was a welcome thing. They last played here in August of 2010 and at the time their bassist Phil Kennemore had been diagnosed with cancer and was being temporarily replaced by Brad Lang. Sadly, the music world would lose Phil in the beginning of 2011 and while the band would keep on moving, they were certainly going to need a little time off after this terrible deal of the cards. Founder Dave Meniketti eventually appeared on “That Metal Show” and told the world that they would indeed be pressing on soon enough. Fast forwarding to 2012, the band had offered their fill in bassist Brad Lang the job of official member and he now joins John Nymann, Mike Vanderhule and Meniketti with the business of bringing the band’s sound to the masses. Tonight’s show was at the obvious B.B. King Blues Club and while there was an opener this evening, I opted to hang out with some of the members of the Official Y&T Forums because they have been super supportive of my writings over the last few years. The group of us all arrived and Y&T went on within minutes. Talk about timing.
The show would start almost at the ring of 8pm, and while that might strike you as a little early for the headliner, it actually makes sense since there was a later evening event being hosted at the venue and that would be the Hip Hop Karaoke. Like a lit firecracker, Y&T launched into “Black Tiger” as their opener and it’s a great way to kick off the night. It would be followed by a tune that the audience seems to love singing in “Don’t Wanna Lose” and I had to say that these melodies were a great way to close out the hectic work week for the fans. “Lipstick And Leather” has always been a favorite of mine even thought it might not be one of the bands most revered classics by some when compared to their older stuff but I still love it. The guys sounded on fire and it has to be the fact that they can feel that energy from their fans. There were no tables set up on the floor this evening and the crowd was able to get right up and close to the action. It was a hit laden set for the ones who were well-schooled in the band’s sound and an education for the ones in need of some lessons. It was without question that everyone was into the show and when I turned my attention over to the sound board I caught glimpse of Eddie Trunk who was standing with some venue heads and Mike Orlando who is the guitarist of the new band with Mike Portnoy, The Adrenaline Mob. Their new album is coming out or had just come out, I am not too sure right now. Speaking of new albums, the last Y&T album is called “Facemelter” and it came out in the middle of 2010. They would pepper in three tracks from the release and they fell in perfectly with the bands established gems. Let’s hope for some new material soon and tunes that stand up to what the fans crave most from the band.
Dave would speak to the crowd a few times over the course of the gig and I guess that someone in front yelled something about Phil for he replied how they missed him as well. Then another must have wanted a guitar pick and he stressed that they were not Y&T branded picks but instead just Dunlop ones. That’s too bad since I know people eat those up like candy. Of course it does get expensive but maybe if enough people write to the company they will endorse him for such coolness. I think we can make that happen if we want to. I’m pretty sure Nymann has them though. Overall this was a powerful night and one that was loaded with some monster guitar playing and tunes that stayed with you long after the show has ended. Comparatively speaking there was a lot of the same stuff that we got the last time around in terms of the set list composition but of course the tunes had been switched and swapped around a little bit. For this gig we did get three more songs than the one in 2010 and that was great. As they checked their time they must have realized that they had some play room and added in “Midnight In Tokyo” and “Open Fire” which were not originally on the set list that I snapped a photograph of at the beginning of the show.
Eddie Trunk would hit the stage to get the guys some extra applause before their encore which was “Rescue Me” and that was all she wrote. Since there was another event coming in we all had to get out of the main venue but Dave said that they were going to go over to Lucille’s next door and hang with the fans for a little while. Tomorrow the band performs a benefit show for a police officer up at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center with Twisted Sister. That should be a great one but I cannot attend as I will be at Deicide at the Gramercy Theatre which is more my stomping grounds than up in Poughkeepsie. Hopefully we can get another Y&T show before more than a year passes us by the next time around. Interestingly enough, a friend had been wondering and decided to muse aloud about what a gig for the band would be like at either Gramercy Theatre or Irving Plaza and I replied, why mess with what works. Everything is around us in Times Square and Y&T surely seems to love playing this particular room. If it isn’t broke don’t fix it. Come back soon guys, we’ll be waiting on you.
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Official Web Site: www.yandtrocks.com
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