Hair Metal

Whitesnake Whitesnake

British rock band Whitesnake unleashes some major hits on their self-titled album, their seventh studio release. The Still of the Night and Is This Love deliver strong support for one of power balladry's finest, Here I Go Again - perhaps the hardest power ballad of them all.

The 7th (really?!) studio album from Whitesnake slithers in with Is This Love, Zep-styled Still of the Night, and mega hit power ballad Here I Go Again.

Like Bon Jovi's Slippery When Wet and New Jersey, Whitesnake recorded their self-titled album at Little Mountain Sound Studios - aka - one of the hit factories for 80s hair metal.

Lead guitar player was a revolving door for Whitesnake in the late 80s. Between the album and the 1987 Versions EP (and Slip of the Tongue if we are being generous), Whitesnake rolled out John Sykes, Adrian Vandenberg, Dann Huff, Vivian Campbell, and Steve Vai. Wild. So much talent.

The non hits are good. The hits are better. Here I Go Again is the best.

Whitesnake (self-titled) notes

Crying in the Rain '87

Wastes NO time getting right to the song. Crying in the Rain feels super disjointed. Whitesnake didn't screw up, it just feels like they didn't know what to do with the whole intro.

That or I just don't understand anything other than 4/4

Crying in the Rain isn't poetry. At all.

Ok. So, a lot of notes in the solo. Like, a lot.

David Coverdale at least had some super falsetto to overcome crappy songs.

Oh gosh, Coverdale brought it back for a huge CRYING!!!

Bad Boys

Coverdale, howlin' at the moon. Great start to Bad Boys.

Total bad ass song.

High heeled women full of champagne and lies. LYRICAL. GENIUS.

This is a made song. Those lyrics confirmed that position. Anyone that has a problem with Bad Boys has a problem with me.

Still of the Night

Bitchin' riff. In the Still of the Night calls to Led Zeppelin without co-opting their whole schtick. Well, maybe Coverdale's vocals ...

Super breakdown part though. Got a Beavis and Butthead dunnna dunna duh duh! kind of part.

Ok, back to the riff. The outro extends a bit too much. Could have cut the song sooner.

The night ain't exactly still anymore ...

By the way, there she is ... Tawny Kitaen, famous for her 3-4 Whitensake video appearances (and the movie Bachelor Party).

Here I Go Again

What can I say?! I mean, this is the anthem to so many things. A power ballad's power ballad.

Re-released (reportedly) because of a lyric dispute, Here I Go Again is triumphant in so many ways. But it's not without its share of drama. Vandenberg was brought in to re-record the solo on the re-release.

The 1987 video itself is an iconic tour de force of 80's grandeur and excess:

  • creepy intense camera stares
  • reckless behavior: girl halfway out of a moving vehicle, then a heavy duty makeout sesh while they are still driving, then, she pulls him into the back seat
  • on stage performing for no one
  • timed pyrotechnics
  • rock power movies: mic stand pumps, stick twirls, guitar camera points, guitarists on their knees shredding solos, etc.
  • two legendary Jaguars (black and white)
  • and an all but nude Tawny Kitaen

Tawny even drops a line in the chorus at 3:26 in the video whilst Coverdale looks on. She is the ultimate hair metal video babe. Nothing will ever challenge her dancing across the hood of those two Jaguars. Nothing beats a young 1980s Tawny Kitaen, the girl from the Whitesnake video. Nothing.

She absolutely dominates the Here I Go Again video. Better yet, it was unscripted. They just put the song on and let her go to town.

We should all thank Marty Callner for his casting choices. Buy that man a beer.

For your enjoyment, the video below is the original version from the 1982 album Saints and Sinners. To be fair, it's a better version than the muted version found on their 1987 Versions EP and repeated on their Greatest Hits album. While still an epic rock tune, that version was overproduced and lacked grit. (How many versions were recorded?!)

It's even layered over Frank the Tank in Old School revving up the Red Dragon while demanding his wife get him some lemonade while this song is blasting.

Give Me All Your Love

Pretty standard 80s hair metal tune. Solid in the all the right ways.

Look, no Tawny Kitaen!

Future Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell rips out a fun solo.

Is This Love

Sixth spot ballad. Different. I like it.

Gotta love the double neck guitar in the video. Key changes and double neck guitars ... so 80s.

Hey kids, it's Tawny Kitaen, again. She is all over Whitesnake videoes.

The guitar solo has a saxophone quality to it. Interesting tone choice by John Sykes.

Children of the Night

Getting right to the point, Children of the Night wastes no time letting everyone know they are ready to rock.

Don't Run For Cover!!! Coverdale channeling Ronnie James Dio.

Children of the Night feels as though it was a creatively borrowed from Iron Maiden.

Straight for the Heart

If Katrina and the Waves wrote a hair metal tune, it would be Straight for the Heart.

Not to jump back on the Maiden train, but the solo for Straight for the Heart also feels creatively borrowed (Run to the Hills).

Don't Turn Away

Don't Turn Away kicks on the keys right away. It also kicks on the lyrical fluff.

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