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  Y & T
Liquid Rooms, Edinburgh, Scotland
Thursday 5th November 2015

Ian Sutherland
ian sutherland

y and t

Edinburgh's Liquid Rooms is one of those venues which cause wails of complaint from rock and Metal fans as a curfew is placed on the bands appearing live to allow them to open the place for their seven day a week club nights.

Of course this means that the venue makes more money and stays open so there is an upside. Not all bands come into this situation ready to deal with it but Y&T have thought ahead and tour support act Sweet Savage are given the night off allowing the veteran headliners to hit the stage at 7.45.

Most of tonight's audience has been savvy enough to turn up early and they are soon in stride with the band and enjoying the show.

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It has been forty one years since their inception and it speaks volumes for the man that sole remaining founder member of Y&T Dave Meniketti still approaches each show with such energy and obvious relish.

He is full of smiles and enjoyment as he and the band rip into opening tune 'Hurricane'. He has lost none of his skills, firing lick after lick out of his guitar in that trademark loud melodic tone of his. He may even be better than he's ever been and his playing is a joy all night.

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His voice has retained its strength and warmth too and he is really on form tonight, looking like he's enjoying every moment and the room feels that and responds in kind.

This is Meniketti's show but he knows he has put together a band of real quality and he is happy to give them room to breathe and shine. Second guitar player John Nymann is a more laid back presence on stage but backs up the main man superbly while enjoying his occasional moment in the spotlight.

Drummer Mike Vanderhule makes his mastery of all the fills and power which is so important to the songs seem easy while bass player Brad Lang is more flamboyant, almost seeming to use his bass as a paddle on some imaginary river at times but always on point with his compatriot in the band's rhythm section.

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When a band has a legacy of material to draw on like Y&T but is still producing new music it can be hard to put together a set list. This is less of a problem for Y&T than most as songs which are introduced as being from more recent releases such as 2010's 'Facemelter' album are greeted with a cheer by an audience obviously familiar with them.

The back catalogue is raided a great deal of course and there are many, many classics aired from the towering riff of 'Mean Streak' and the tongue in cheek sleaziness of 'Dirty Girl' to the audience sing along intro and equally memorable chorus of 'Rescue Me'.

They are not afraid to mess with the originals either as the very effective gentle treatment of the first verse of 'Midnight In Tokyo' shows. The vocal harmonies are great on this as well as on the likes of 'Don't Stop Runnin'', an underrated part of what these guys do.

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There are a few real golden nuggets aired too such as a great version of 'Eyes Of A Stranger' from the 'Contagious' album with a real chunky sounding riff.

In fact the only problem with tonight's set list is that it was too good. Many of the audience were enjoying a light refreshment or two during a show which lasted well over two hours and there was little room for toilet or bar breaks without missing something special like the classic 'I Believe In You' being thrown in unexpectedly half way through the main set. No one wants to miss Meniketti's solo in that which raises the roof every time.

It really doesn't seem like two hours plus since 'Hurricane' as the audience lap up a classic encore blast of 'Open Fire', 'Forever' and 'Don't Wanna Lose' to end a fantastic night. This gig really was nothing less than a triumph.

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Y&T can still rock like a bastard even now and for fans of the band there was simply nothing here not to love other than an smidgeon of regret that late bassist Phil Kennemore wasn't there to share it with us. If you like quality melodic hard rock played with real energy and class seeing Y&T is essential! Roll on next year's tour.

Line up:
Dave Meniketti – lead guitar, lead vocals
John Nymann – rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Mike Vanderhule – drums, percussion, backing vocals
Brad Lang – bass guitar, backing vocals

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