Prior to the summer of 1987 I had no idea Whitesnake even existed. I was a typical sixteen year old, hanging out with friends listening to music and going through the height of my hair metal phase. 1987 was an absolutely fantastic year for hard rock/metal music and by the summer of that year there had already been a ton of great releases (White Lion’s Pride, Lee Aaron’s self titled LP, Motley Crue’s Girls, Girls, Girls to name a few). Hanging out at my friend Sean’s house one hot day in July, he told me that he had just bought a killer hard rock album by this British band named Whitesnake and that it absolutely rocked. The album cover looked pretty cool, and Whitesnake sounded like a bad ass name for a band so I was curious to hear what it sounded like. Although it had been released back in April, we were just getting our hands on it now (living in a small Northern Ontario town had its disadvantages when it came to accessing a lot of metal music).
We put the album on the turntable, (starting with side one track one naturally) and I was instantly blown away when I heard David Coverdale start to belt out “Crying In The Rain”. What a track to start an album with!!!…. From the first 30 seconds I was hooked. Coverdale’s vocal range was astounding, he was hitting notes I don’t think I had ever heard before, while the guitars came crunching in creating this sonic boom that just begged to be played at full volume. The album was full of standout tracks, including the signature Whitesnake hair metal ballad “Is This Love” and the power pop metal hit “Here I Go Again”. My favourite song on the record however, quickly became “Still Of The Night”, which to this today remains one of those songs I just have to crank as loudly as possible. It also certainly helped that all the videos from the album featured Coverdale’s new MTV ready band (including the amazing Vivian Campbell) and the lovely Tawny Kitaen (who became the fantasy rock chick for every teenage boy in North America). The entire album was fantastic, with nary a filler song on the whole thing. The secondary tracks (Bad Boys, Gimme All Your Love etc) all rocked with ferocity and the album quickly became the soundtrack to our summer. It appealed to the guys who wanted to rock and the girls we hung out with who loved playing “Here I Go Again” over and over. I soon discovered that there were 6 more Whitesnake albums and ended up picking up a few of them (of which “Slide It In” quickly became my second favourite Whitesnake record).
“Whitesnake” remains the best Whitesnake album and in my opinion still stands today as one of the crown jewels of 80’s hair metal.
Enjoy some of my favourite songs from this mega-album below:
My favourite track from the album, “Still Of The Night” (and the best video)!
“Here I Go Again”, one of the most iconic power ballads of all time (#1 on the Hot 100 in October 1987)
The classic ballad “Is This Love” hit #2 on Billboard’s Hot 100
The rocking track (and 5th single) “Give Me All Your Love”