Van Halen performed in New York City at Cafe Wha? in Greenwich Village Thursday night to a jam-packed room of 250. Frontman David Lee Roth, guitarist Eddie Van Halen, drummer Alex Van Halen and bassist Wolfgang Van Halen performed a one-hour set with classic hits like Panama, You Really Got Me and Dance the Night Away. They also gave the crowd a treat by performing a song from their new album, A Different Kind of Truth due out Feb. 7. The song is titled She's the Woman.
The intimate setting was a rather unlikely choice for the kick-off of the band's first performance together since 2007. This seemingly random choice actually holds significance. David Lee Roth's uncle Manny Roth owned and operated Café Wha? and booked legendary acts like Jimi Hendrix, Bill Cosby, Bob Dylan, Richard Pryor and others. I'm more nervous about this gig than I would ever be in the Garden, said Roth, referring to New York's Madison Square Garden. The band will play there Feb. 28 and March 1.
The cramped, basement venue turned out to be the perfect place for the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers. Critics said the show was blazing, despite the freezing temperatures outside. Audience members tweeted videos and photos during throughout the night. The crowd must have known it would be a good time when Roth stepped onto the stage and said, It's like climbing into a rocket in here. It's a rocket that comes from way back into the past into what the future's going to look like. Welcome to Occupy Van Halen, ladies and gentlemen!
A Different Kind of Truth will be the band's first album with Roth since 1984, released that year.
Since then, the band has gone through many changes. Roth left to pursue a solo career and was replaced by Sammy Hagar. The switch was anything but smooth and, when he later returned to replace Hagar, more discord followed. Bassist Michael Anthony was replaced with Wolfgang Van Halen, the son of guitar great Eddie Van Halen. But Thursday night had everyone saying it Feels So Good.
Check out footage from the show last night, plus photos taken at Cafe Wha?