Y&T (Live)

at O2 Academy, Newcastle, U.K., October 5, 2012

You can always tell when winter is closing in.  The nights get darker sooner, a cold chill fills the air and Y&T’s annual trek around the UK starts.

Few bands have such a loyal fan base as Y&T who continue to turn out in their droves year after year.  Their ’80s peak may be behind them but their enduring appeal remains stronger than ever.  Perhaps the fact that they have largely shunned passing fads and focussed more on producing quality music than superficial image issues has meant that they are not frozen in a time warp unlike some of their compatriots. This has really paid dividends in the long run. With their credibility intact, Y&T remain a potent force and very much in demand on the live circuit.

The classics “Midnight in Tokyo”, “Winds of Change”, “Black Tiger” and a full throttle “Mean Streak” sound as fresh and vibrant as they did 30 odd years ago.  Yet, it is when Y&T dig deep into their back catalogue that they really hit home.  With “Gimme The Beat” from Endangered Species and “Rhythm or Not” they keep the set varied and by changing the song choice from tour to tour they keep both the band and the fans focussed. You can really feel that Meniketti puts so much effort into carefully choosing the songs, taking note of what the fans want to hear and that no song is out of bounds. There is never even the slightest whiff of staleness at a Y&T show with Dave Meniketti and co. playing as if their lives depended on it.

Meniketti, with his wild mop of curly hair, was in fine voice and his guitar work inspired and exciting with the perfect balance of melody and fire.  There’s no over the top noodling here, just cracking solos that fit the songs perfectly.

Long-time members Mike Vandurhule (drums) and John Nymann (guitar) continue to provide the solid backing to Meniketti while bassist Brad Lang, who replaced the much missed Phil Kennemore a couple of years back, ensures that the spirit of Kennemore lives on in the music.

Closing the incredible two and a quarter hour show with “I Believe in You”, “Forever” and “Rescue Me” is a masterstroke.  It really doesn’t get better than this.

Another year comes and goes and yet another exhilarating performance from Y&T.  With winter just around the corner, a great dose of Y&T is the perfect tonic to keep those cold nights at bay.  Roll on next year.


  • Mick Burgess

    Mick is a reviewer and photographer here at Metal Express Radio, based in the North-East of England. He first fell in love with music after hearing Jeff Wayne's spectacular The War of the Worlds in the cold winter of 1978. Then in the summer of '79 he discovered a copy of Kiss Alive II amongst his sister’s record collection, which literally blew him away! He then quickly found Van Halen I and Rainbow's Down To Earth, and he was well on the way to being rescued from Top 40 radio hell!   Over the ensuing years, he's enjoyed the Classic Rock music of Rush, Blue Oyster Cult, and Deep Purple; the AOR of Journey and Foreigner; the Pomp of Styx and Kansas; the Progressive Metal of Dream Theater, Queensrÿche, and Symphony X; the Goth Metal of Nightwish, Within Temptation, and Epica, and a whole host of other great bands that are too numerous to mention. When he's not listening to music, he watches Sunderland lose more football (soccer) matches than they win, and occasionally, if he has to, he goes to work as a property lawyer.

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