Thursday, July 31, 2014

Y&T - In Rock We Trust

Y&T (also known as Yesterday & Today) is an American hard rock band that was formed in Oakland, California, in the mid-70’s. In 1984, they released their sixth studio album In Rock We Trust which hit number 33 in the UK and number 46 on the US Billboard Album chart (with a seventeen week total time on that chart).

The roster of the band at the time included Dave Meniketti (vocals and guitar), Joey Alves (guitar and vocals), Phil Kennemore (bass and vocals) and Leonard Haze (drums and vocals). Today we’ll give this one a listen in honor of its thirtieth anniversary.

Side one starts with the rallying cry of “Rock & Roll’s Gonna Save the World”. It embodies the arena anthems that big rock bands were doing in the late 70’s and early 80’s.

With an anti-war message, “Life, Life, Life” winds along on a wavy guitar groove. It reminds me quite a bit of late 80’s Van Halen when Sammy Hagar was doing the vocals.

“Masters and Slaves” continues the topical focus lyrically while back by a driving rock rhythm.

Thing slow down a bit with the power-ballad “I’ll Keep On Believing’ (Do You Know)”.

“Break Out Tonight!” opens with a cool, swing to it before picking up the tempo. It conveys a message of pent up energy that is on the verge of exploding.

Side two begins with “Lipstick and Leather”, a rousing ode to a tough woman who keeps her lover in place with a mix of pleasure and pain. It is not too hard to imagine the type of music video that they would have made for this one; it would have easily been an MTV staple. They missed that opportunity.

The high-energy “Don’t Stop Runnin’” was released as the first single. It has a Journey vibe for me.

“(Your Love Is) Drivin’ Me Crazy” should not be confused with the Sammy Hagar song from the year before with almost exactly the same title. This song has a slower, anticipatory feel to it.

The band kicks it back into high gear with “She’s a Liar”.

The album closes with the ballad “This Time”.

This was my first listen to any albums by Y&T and I liked it well enough to want to hear most of the songs again. The tracks on In Rock We Trust reminded me of the kind of mainstream rock that I was into during the mid-to-late 80’s (Def Leppard, Bon Jovi, and Poison). This is definitely one I will consider purchasing in the near future.

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