I decided to hit random on my music library and see what album came up. Y&T – Down for the Count, I first had this on cassette and I would listen in my 1976 Vega as I was driving around with friends. It came out my senior year of high school and listening brings back memories — mostly good.
I’ve always liked Meniketti’s voice and appreciated his guitar work and the first track “Born to Rock” does not disappoint. Some obligatory mid-eigthies keyboards were added to the tracks (I could do without them) including the next two tracks “All American Boy” and “Anytime at All” — which both had very catchy choruses.
“Anything for Money” was a much more traditional Y&T rocker while still maintaining the catchy chorus.
“Face Like and Angel” has a slower start, but kicks in at the chorus with a decent riff that would have been much better with a harder rock production and mix. The bridge leading up the solo and the solo makes the song worthwhile.
Kevin Beamish’s production was evident on this album as it was much more poppy than previous Y&T albums and it included their biggest hit “Summertime Girls”. I have to admit that this is one of my favorite 80s songs — listening to it now, it seems more like a “tool tune” as Adam Corolla calls them. A song you have cranked up until someone pulls up alongside the car when you promptly turn it down.
“Looks Like Trouble” has the classic Y&T riff structure — bluesy with with excellent vocals — a little bit of an AC/DC vibe on this song with some Van Halen thrown in there (with the Panama break-down).
“Your Mama Don’t Dance” — not sure what they were thinking here. A very crappy remake of a very bad song. They even threw in some synth drums in this one (for no apparent reason). But hey, the guitar solo rocks, so maybe that’s the reason for including it.
“Don’t Tell Me What To Wear” was a bad decision with bad lyrics. Sounds like they were having difficulty filling out the album and just needed something to throw around another good solo.
Ending the album is “Hands of Time” which is a decent slogger that never seems to really kick in. Better than the previous two songs, but easily could have been left off. Feel free to stop listening after “Looks Like Trouble”.
A strong album at the time, the mix is a lot muddier an tinny than their other albums. With a better mix and overall production I would have liked this album much more. And “Summertime Girls” is one of the best 80s anthem rockers.