If your looking for value for money then you cant go wrong here,the first comprehensive look at Y&T's prime era,you get 7 albums spread over 4 discs.
Disc 1 EARTHSHAKER (1981) and BLACK TIGER (1982)generally accepted as the bands jewels in the crown,this will be the disc most often on repeat play,yes they wore their influences on their sleeves,its not hard to spot the recycled riffs but this band were on fire ,stunning lead guitar and excellent harmonies,just class.
Disc 2 MEANSTREAK (1983) and IN ROCK WE TRUST (1984) , while not at the same level as the first 2,how could they be but their still excellent in their own right.
Disc 3 OPEN FIRE (1985) and DOWN FOR THE COUNT -SIDE 1 original album (1985) plus a couple from IN ROCK WE TRUST, excellent live disc plus a slightly more AORish disc in DOWN FOR THE COUNT. Well worth hearing.
Disc 4 DOWN FOR THE COUNT -original side 2 plus the Indie release Friday Rock Show Live, as usual BBC recording holding up well after all this time.
What can you say,sound quality excellent,Andy Pearce involved in the (re)mastering,packaging is the old style 'fat' box,nice touch having the A&M logo on the disca, while the booklet is light on history,at this price you cant quibble too much,the splitting of albums between discs is a little annoying but i can live with it.
I always felt Y&T were an underrated band. They made some great heavy rock albums in the early 80s, but never gained the fame of other bands at the time. This compilation is fantastic value for money. £12.99 (at the time of writing) gets you 6 full albums (Earth Shaker, Black Tiger, Mean Streak, In Rock We Trust, Down for the Count, and Open Fire - Live) plus a selection of live tracks from Donnington and Reading festivals. The first three studio albums are the strongest (and heaviest), the sound got increasingly commercial after that, and the official live album (Open Fire) really shows how good they were as a live act (apart from the awful "Summertime Girls" studio track that's included and out of place on a live album).
You get 68 tracks here all told, and okay maybe not every single one is a winner, but there's more than enough to make this a worthwhile purchase.
Although I still have Earthshaker, Open Fire and a couple of pre A&M (when they were Yesterday & Today) and post A&M albums Y&T never really sunk their hooks fully into me and I hold my hands up to say I sold both Black Tiger and Mean Streak in a vinyl clear out years ago and never bought anything recorded after for quite a while (I kept Earthshaker though and eventually grabbed the CD). BUT the title track of Mean Streak was always buzzing around my noggin as did the super catchy Summertime Girls which used to get played at a rock nightclub I used to go to - not one of Y&Ts most hallowed tracks fan wise apparently but it made sense in when you were surrounded by friends n beer... which did prompt me to get the weird Open Fire album.
About a year ago I grabbed a copy of Contagious and dug it and started thinking about getting the albums I sold back in the day again. Then here comes this release with perfect timing, I have to say it seems I'm getting lucky these days with regards these kind of sets coming out at the right time! What can I say for this price it's a steal, I still stick with Earthshaker being their best album of this period, the album is HUGE with absolutely no filler, Black Tiger and Mean Streak also great slices of power rock but each has an occasional duff track on (IMHO), the later "commercial" albums (In Rock we Trust & Down for the Count) are still great. I haven't heard these two before and they're damned good albums although I could do without the covers of All American Boy and Your Momma Don't Dance on Down for the Count and although this may be tantamount to heresy I think In Rock We Trust hangs together in places better than Black Tiger & Mean Streak.
Now the live stuff Open Fire is both brilliant and perplexing. As I mentioned I have the vinyl which I bought as it had Summertime Girls on and another 9 live tracks but I always felt it a rather disjointed album with the studio version of Summertime girls kicking off side 2 of the original vinyl completely ruining the flow of the record. It should have been stuck at the end as per the studio tracks on Kiss Alive II. What's even dafter is the track appears again on the Down for the Count album and as this set faithfully reproduces the A&M releases you get the same track twice haha! Also the Open Fire was way too short it should have been a double album. But having said that the live tracks are excellent as are the fantastic tracks from the Friday Rock Show taken from the 1984 Monsters of Rock - this CD alone costs a lot more than this set if bought seperately.
Anyway enough waffle, this is a brilliant release and complete value for money if you haven't already got the CDs.
All the best Y&T albums (and then some) are included here: Earthshaker (1981) and Black Tiger (1982) on the first CD, Mean Streak (1983) and In Rock We Trust (1984) on the second one. These four albums are the essential Y&T albums for me.
The remaining two CDs include albums Open Fire and Down For the Count (both 1985) and Live On The Friday Rock Show (1982/1984). They are all good but not quite as good as the albums on the first two CDs.
If only they released the first two Yesterday & Today albums on cd as well...
Had a couple of these on vinyl and took the opportunity to get them on CD. This turned out to be quite a bargain. I hadn't heard these for a long time and listening to them again reminded me of what a good band Y & T were. (are?)
The first time I heard this band was in concert on the Friday Rock show almost 30 years ago, and loved them. After that, I just seemed to forget about them. I suppose I just got into other bands like Saxon, Motley Crue, W.A.S.P., Maiden etc. Until about 4 years ago, my interest was re kindled by Planet Rock. I looked for a couple of albums then but a £8 and above price for each was enough to put me off!
Then this CD came along, or should I say the whole damn back catalogue from the best years, and would you believe it..... the Friday rock show concert material itself!
Y&T playing some of the best rock you would have heard for a long time, and a blinding price of under £12! A no brainer really, even bought my best mate a copy for Christmas.
I love this band. I have been a fan since Earthshaker and have been fortunate to see them live for the last 7 years. Y&T love to play Newcastle. Over the years I have recommended Y&T to friends, they turn up to see them live and all state why have I never heard this band before. This I will never understand Dave Meniketti for me has the most under rated voice in rock and is up there with the best playing his Les Paul. I have had to rely on Mp3 sites for these albums and to find them in one box set I am like a kid in a sweet shop. I recently bought a Cowon x9 and MP3's sound flawed hence I have missed my Y&T fix. I can now Rip them to Flac and sit back and reminisce. Delivery was really quick too which is a plus to Amazon. Thank you so much.