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15.02.2018

WHITESNAKE

1987 - 30th Anniversary Edition

Anmeldt av Jens Nepper
(Parlophone Records, 2017)

Karakter: 5/6

Whitesnake 1987 cover.jpgWhitesnake's multi-platinum selling "1987" opus (or the self-titled one, if you prefer) not only changed the course of the band's history forever and cemented their everlasting legacy as one of the greatest rock outfits of all time, but it also marked a change in style and vision without sacrificing an ounce of power or passion that the band was known for. As brilliant as those charming and irresistible first handful of albums were, the US never really caught on or got the band, but "1987" and to some extent its predecessor, "Slide It In" (1984), changed all of that. "1987" sold millions of copies and Whitesnake were suddenly a household name...or simply the gods of rock depending on your perspective. It is damn-near to impossible to review this superb 2017 anniversary edition remaster of the classic record without taking into account how much of a cultural impact it has had ever since it was originally released all those years ago. Boasting nothing but utterly memorable and well-written tunes that still go down a storm at any Whitesnake gig to this day, there is just no denying the fact that this was and still is one of the greatest hard rock albums in existence.

The remastering of the album has done wonders for it and as unlikely as it may seem, the songs sound even clearer and more defined than ever before albeit with a lovely crisp and organic vibe to them. When it hit the record shelves back then, "1987" may have sounded clean-cut and somewhat polished (not to mention that dreaded word ”commercial”) to the fans of the early blues-based era of Whitesnake, but the thing is that it never sounded sterile or devoid of passion and intensity. Coverdale's inimitable voice is strong and booming here while John Sykes wields his guitar as if it was some kind of musical wand. The rhythm section consisting of seasoned veteran Neil Murray (bass) and Aynsley Dunbar (drums) leaves very little to be desired and is right on the money. The raging yet atmospheric album opener "Still of the Night" still sounds fantastic and from thereon we are treated to infectious and extraordinary cuts such as "Give Me All Your Love", "Bad Boys", "Is This Love", "Here I Go Again", "Children of the Night", and "Crying in the Rain". That pretty much says it all, I reckon.

This 30th anniversary edition has the added bonus of a previously unreleased live recording from the 1987/1988 world tour simply titled "Snakeskin Boots". While it is far from the best or most engaging (not to mention entertaining) live recording by the band out there, it is interesting to hear the Coverdale/Vandenberg/Campbell/Sarzo/Aldridge line-up in action. The guys plow through some of the most well-known and crowd-pleasing tracks of theirs to a rapturous applause from the various fans in attendance. Pretty cool stuff, but nothing outstanding or truly remarkable.

Although your truly is partial to the "Slip of the Tongue" album from 1989, there is no denying the staying power or quality of "1987". It still resonates with us to this day and it will continue to do so for decades to come. It is a testament to great songwriting and it sounds as fresh, vibrant, and spirited as it did more than thirty years ago.
 


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