Van Halen tore it up at Madison Square Garden last night. In front of a sea of mostly middle-aged men, some still proudly sporting past concert t-shirts tucked into various levels of “mom-jeans,” David Lee Roth, Eddie Van Halen, Alex Van Halen, and Wolfgang Van Halen rocked the Garden like it was well, not quite 1984, but kinda close.
Sure, the high kicks weren’t as high. But, the enthusiasm, the chemistry and the music were electric. The band has a new album. It’s called “A Different Kind of Truth” and they played some of their new songs, like “Tattoo” but they also hit most of the notes they’re known for: “Ain’t Talkin’ ’Bout Love,” “You Really Got Me,” “Panama” and “Hot for Teacher” among others. One of the best moments, in my opinion, was “Ice Cream Man.” Another – Alex’s drum solo – simply amazing, and at points reminiscent of a Latin beat. And of course, Eddie’s guitar licks in his solo were awe-inspiring. There’s a reason he’s known as the most masterful guitarist in the industry. As you might expect, lots of people stood awestruck, listening, with their mouths agape. It was a rare treat for this crowd. The band ended the set with “Jump,” and towards the end, confetti canons went off, and Roth waved a giant checkered flag to indicate ‘hey, we’re done, we did it, we passed the finish line!’ Kudos, Van Halen. You certainly did. Awesomely done.