Review Summary: "Temptationnnnnnnnnnn, you make it so hard to say no!"
History has it that the 80's were a time of ridiculous wardrobes, men wearing abnormally tight pants, and of course, mainstream hard rock jams that 99% of the time dealt with sex. The vast majority of hair metal bands from this era had more in common with the glam scene than that of actual metal titans like Dio, Maiden and Priest. Dave Mustaine famously created an acronym for GLAM- "Gay L.A. Metal." In hindsight, there were a handful of bands from this era actually worth a damn; Y&T was one such group who was able to straddle that extremely thin line between glam and retaining some level of musical credibility.
With song titles like "Boys Night Out", "Armed and Dangerous", and "Rhythm or Not (Here She Comes Again)", Y&T isn't much different from the glam bands that ruled the airwaves 3 decades ago. But unlike their peers, vocalist Dave Meniketti uses a style that is more in line vintage David Lee Roth than a glamster who had a fist quickly rammed in his anal sphincter. Jimmy Degrasso, who would later play for the likes of Megadeth, Dokken and Alice Cooper and among others, gives a solid performance on the drum kit - relying on simple beats with occasionally complex fills.
Also separating Y&T from the rest of the hair metal pack is the fact that there are no diluted ballads created for radio purposes that felt forced to begin with. In fact, there are no ballads at all. Y&T engineered Contagious
to be a fun album from beginning to end, completely neglecting slow, cliché nonsense about roses, rain, and heartbreak. All Y&T care about is smashing on hot women and having a good time, which I can respect. Couple that with some upper level guitar playing (for the time period) and it is clear to see that Y&T, if nothing else, are a bit manlier than their counterparts.
Y&T's biggest selling point is undoubtedly Meniketti's vocals. Most of the songs are laughable if taken seriously, but they're not intended to rival Beethoven's No. 9 - they're intended to form an upbeat soundtrack to getting drunk and doing stuff you'll later regret. In a way, the raunchiness is satisfying. If Americans had more exposure to Y&T in the '80s, the band surely would've seen exponential growth since frankly these guys blow cheesewads like Poison and Cinderella out of the water.