42° Good Afternoon
42° Good Afternoon

Van Halen reunites at Cafe Wha?

Van Halen was all smiles and firing on all cylinders Thursday night at a private showcase for its upcoming tour.

It was almost too much to handle for the tiny, 250-capacity Cafe Wha? in Greenwich Village, which Roth's uncle Manny Roth used to own back when Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix played there.

"I'm more nervous about this gig than I ever would be at the Garden," said David Lee Roth, who has returned to the Van Halen fold as the singer once again. "There's no place to hide up here. . . . There's no fake vocals -- no fake anything."

This version of Van Halen -- Roth and three Van Halens, Eddie on guitar, Alex on drums, and Eddie's son Wolfgang on bass -- is the same one that toured in 2008, but this time they will have new material to play, as well as their classics. The band kicks off a national tour Feb. 18 in Louisville, Ky., and is set for two shows at Madison Square Garden on Feb. 28 and March 1. Tickets go on sale Jan. 14.

The band unveiled the new song "She's the Woman," with a chugging guitar line and a Red Hot Chili Peppers-ish bass, as part of its 65-minute set. The show was packed with classic hits like "Dance the Night Away" and "Running With the Devil" and the stunning Eddie Van Halen guitar solos that go with them. The band's new album, "A Different Kind of Truth," hits stores Feb. 7.

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