Yesterday... Today... Tomorrow

Tomorrow evening, one of the true standard bearers for classy hard rock return to Belfast – and it’s going to be a facemelting experience.
I am of course referring to Y&T. Although the band will be without founding member Phil Kennemore (currently battling cancer), the San Francisco no doubt will rip another hole in the roof of the Spring And Airbrake when they hit the stage around about 9.30 or so. And, I’ve just one question: are you ready to rawk?
Y&T can truly be called originators of a genre: tracing their roots back to 1974, they slogged their guts out for eight years, crafting their sound and paving the way for the likes of Ratt, Motley Crue, Dokken, Great White and a whole raft of other ‘big hair big attitude’ bands who, like it or not, can pay more than lip service to the influence of Dave Meniketti and company.
Originally called Yesterday and Today, the band released two albums on London Records before, at the dawn of the down and dirty eighties making probably the best two decisions of their lives – switching to the then shit hot A&M roster and shortening their name! The result: one muthafucka of an album that brought them onto my radar – and that of millions of rockers around the world: 1982’s frankly awesome ‘Black Tiger’.
It’s hard to believe that was 28 years ago. But, almost three decades later, it sounds as fresh and as exciting as when I first slipped it from it’s sleeve and tentatively placed my old Binatone deck’s needle into it’s groove: slipping through the instrumental preview of ‘From The Moon’, the salvo that is ‘Open Fire’ still raises (now greying) hairs on the back of my neck.
OK, if you’re ready this, you’re more than likely a Y&T fan, so I’m not going to bore with you all the details of what has happened since... needless to say, ‘Black Tiger’ and the follow-up ‘Mean Streak’ remain two of my favourite albums, regularly finding their way onto my now vintage Sansui turntable (fuck, it might be 20 years old itself but it gives off one helluva sound), and a Y&T track essentially playing at any Paradise City night.
Having returned to glorious studio form earlier this year with ‘Facemelter’ – their first album in 13 years – Y&T continue to prove that, without them, the hard rock genre as we know it today probably would be a very different prospect indeed.
Going back to 1982, Dave Meniketti opened ‘My Way Or The Highway’ with “I’ll tell you what I want girl... I want respect... and I’m going to get it”. One thing’s for sure: he sure as hell has got the respect he and his comrades in arms are due. See you all tomorrow night \m/

Authors: Monk

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