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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Y&T live at the Token Lounge (Westland, Michigan. USA) March 9th 2012

Y&T live at The Token Lounge, Westland, Michigan, USA 
Friday March 9th 2012

Well folks, as regular readers know, from time to time I have been fortunate to have had the occasional guest reviewer help me out here at Chambers of Rock, covering live shows when I've been unable to attend from time to time.
This show, I have to say is one I really did not want to miss as Y&T are a very old favourite of mine, who I was fortunate to catch a few years back at the Emerald Theatre in Mt. Clemens, Michigan and close to home, but on this occasion I could not make it to The Token Lounge. Fortunately, my old mate Dave Dunford duly obliged as it was actually very close to home for him, so it's over to Dave for his review. Thanks Dave! 

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Having been a big Y&T fan for many years I was pleased to see them making a stop in the Detroit area on their current 2012 tour in support of their most recent release – Facemelter. Over the years (decades!!) I have probably caught them six or seven times live, have always liked their music and still play the Black Tiger and Meanstreak albums on my iPod regularly.

I had never been to the Token Lounge and had no idea what to expect but was pleasantly surprised to find it to be a decent sized venue with a good sized stage. Plenty of parking too, making it a venue I would certainly return to willingly.

When we arrived the warm up band had just started their first song. My apologies for missing their name ….. I think they were a local band but unfortunately for them (and us!!) the sound was so bad it was almost impossible to hear a word of any of the lyrics and really get a feel for how they played musically!!
I was a little concerned that the house sound system and mixing was maybe just poor and that’s what we would get for Y&T too once they hit the stage.

Y&T at Token Lounge, Westland, Michigan - Photo by Dave Dunford

Fortunately, that proved not to be the case …. In fact once Y&T opened fire (Sorry!) it was noticeable immediately that the sound was excellent and the band sounded very crisp and clear.
The band looked good and sounded good and right from the off looked like they were really enjoying themselves, today the band is made up of original and founder Dave Meniketti (guitar / vocals), John Nymann (guitar), Mike Vanderhule (drums) and Brad Lang (bass).

Open Fire was the first song leading instantly into Don’t Wanna Lose and then Black Tiger.
As I said previously, the sound was great and the venue had filled up nicely. - I’m terrible at guessing the size of a crowd, but I’m reliably informed that there was about 300 people squeezed in the Token Lounge!

At the back of the stage was a backdrop of the Facemelter cover with a decent lighting system overhead and a healthy stack of amps either side of the stage.

Y&T side stage shot at Token Lounge, Westland, Michigan
Photo by Dave Dunford

Lipstick & Leather, Don’t Stop Running and Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark all got an airing before one of my personal favorites, Midnight In Tokyo.
Dave Meniketti has been fronting this band since 1974 and yet he still looked like he was loving every minute being on stage and played every single note throughout the set as enthusiastically as possible. Well worth every cent of the admission fee.

Al had asked that once the band kicked in to Meanstreak that I call him and I duly obliged. – Editors note: Thanks Dave!
I also fired off a text to my brother - Even though it was 4:00am in his time zone! - telling him I was at a Y&T concert and commenting that it must have been almost 30 years since we first went to see them in England. The next morning he had replied that it was November 21st 1983!!! How time flies……

Summertime Girls, Shine On, Blind Patriot - both from the Facemelter CD - and the timeless Winds Of Change came next, followed by Contagious, I’m Coming Home  - also from FacemelterI’ll Cry For You, Eyes Of A Stranger, Dirty Girl, Hurricane and a Mike Vanderhule drum solo. There was ample dialogue between most of the songs, not too much but just a little Meniketti anecdote here and there.

Bar Room Boogie, the classic I Believe In You and Forever closed the main set before the band returned to play Hang ‘Em High and Rescue Me before disappearing for the night.

Overall the set was great, all the songs I wanted to hear with three new songs and every one was played with a great amount of enthusiasm and the sound was excellent. Really well mixed and not too loud that it became distorted.

We left the Token very pleased, really not a bad venue at all and Y&T was great.
If you get a chance to check them out sometime ….., do it, you won’t be disappointed.
A real class act, thank you and goodnight!

Editor's note: Thanks Dave, nice review mate, don't you think folks?!
Keep up the good work and I'll happily ask you to help out again.
Cheers, Al

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