“Yesterday and Today – Live” (re-issue) by Y&T

Artist: Y&T
Title: “Yesterday and Today – Live” (re-issue)
Label: Metal Blade Records
Release Date: 8/11/1998
Genre: Hard Rock
Rating: 4.5/5

If you are one of the smart legacy Hard Rockers out there then you already know about the powerhouse outfit that goes by the name of Y&T and if not, this particular live recording is a release that amounts to a great education in their material. Originally released in 1991 and re-issued in 1998, the live recording of “Yesterday and Today Live” presents the bands “final” roster of Dave Meniketti, Phil Kennemore, Stef Burns and Jimmy DeGrasso as they tour the world one last time and support their album “Ten” together before choosing to call it a day. The bands original fan base knows full well how the group was once rounded out by Leonard Haze on drums and Joey Alves on guitar but those members had been replaced for a few years by DeGrasso and Burns who really do a commendable job at the end of the day. The album starts of strong with “Meanstreak” and right into “Hurricane” but absent is the often incendiary “Open Fire”. Oh well, I guess you have to change the set list around every once in awhile. There is only one tune from the bands “Contagious” which is an instrumental and only one from the “Ten” album with “Hard Times”. Even though we get some standards like “Black Tiger” and “Forever”, I did find a little surprise that songs like “Lipstick And Leather” and “Summertime Girls” were omitted from this particular live set. The latter song most of all since this was effectively the biggest song Y&T ever had in the larger public eye.

Performance wise this is a tight show and one that you can feel the energy coming out of your speakers from. Dave has a great live register in his voice and it shows a lot of power which is impressive since he is also a ripping guitar player. The drumming is rock solid and this is easy to see why since the bass thunder of Kennemore is dead on. The bassist also helps out quite a bit in the bands harmonies and that was always one of the cooler sides to Y&T music in my eyes. Of course Phil gets to show off his own vocals towards the end of the show with “Squeeze” which is a fan favorite for the long time supporters. There is a slight lacking in the production in terms of its audio sonics, but since this is a vintage recording and did not likely have the most amazing technology at its disposal you have to lend it some leeway. Either way, for a second live album, and one that presents this particular grouping of players it is still something worth digging around for. I don’t feel that the bands most ardent support structure will complain about having this recording in their collection. This is especially the case when one considers just how hard it is to locate a copy of their first live effort “Open Fire”. The particular show is slightly more comprehensive than that other one anyway. The packaging leaves a lot to be desired, but that is alright given the albums vintage of 1998 when these things were coming out in addition to LP and cassette tape versions. We get a photo of Meniketti on the cover along with four individual shots of the roster on the inside of the three page foldout. Phil Kennemore is listed as “Kenmore” which is more appliance than bassist but oh well. There is also a page that features a few of the covers of the bands albums but the liner notes are limited to credits and the quotation of “17 years, 12 albums, thanks for the memories, we love you all”. That made sense since this was serving as the bands swan song and a proper goodbye. At the time of this original release the band did go on hiatus but would return in 1995 for some shows before reuniting officially and getting back to business in 2001 with some different members from this album. There was a brief reconnection with drummer Haze but it was like a lightning flash. Y&T is definitely a band to see in action and the Hard Rock world is a better place with them around in it.

Track Listing:
1. Meanstreak
2. Hurricane
3. Don’t Stop Runnin’
4. Struck Down
5. Winds Of Change
6. Black Tiger
7. Midnight In Tokyo
8. Beautiful Dreamer
9. Hard Times
10. I’ll Cry For You
11. I Believe In You
12. Squeeze
13. Forever

Official Website: http://www.meniketti.com

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