Tuesday, June 8, 2010

WHITESNAKE 1987, THE TIGER OF JOHN SYKES

Whitesnake (also known as Serpens Albus in Japan and 1987 in the UK and Europe) is the eighth studio album by British hard rock band of the same name, released in 1987. The album was a major crossover hit eventually selling over eight million copies in the United States alone (and thus going eight times platinum). The album peaked at #2 on the Billboard 200 chart. Its success even boosted its predecessor, Slide It In, from gold to double platinum status.

In Europe the album was called 1987 which featured a different running order and two extra tracks, "Looking for Love" and "You're Gonna Break My Heart Again"; and in Japan the album was "titled" / "catch phrased" on the obi strips as Serpens Albus in reference of the illustrated text on the album's artwork which, in Latin, means "Whitesnake"). The two extra European tracks would be released in America in the 90s on Whitesnake's Greatest Hits.

After the album was recorded, lead singer David Coverdale fired the band members who had played on the recordings: John Sykes (guitar), who went on to found Blue Murder; Neil Murray (bass), who went on to play with Black Sabbath; and Aynsley Dunbar (drums), bringing the period of their greatest chart success to a halt. Adrian Vandenberg, who played on the solo to "Here I Go Again," joined the band on a full-time basis after the other members were gone. The videos for "Still of the Night","Here I Go Again", "Is This Love" and "Give Me All Your Love", apart of David Coverdale himself, feature the touring line-up of Vivian Campbell, Adrian Vandenberg, Rudy Sarzo, and Tommy Aldridge, though they never took part on the recordings, except for Vandenberg, who played on the solo for "Here I Go Again", and Campbell who re-recorded the solo for the video and single version of "Give Me All Your Love".

The album produced three major crossover hit singles: the Led Zeppelin-influenced "Still of the Night", "Here I Go Again", the band's only #1 single in the U.S. and the power ballad "Is This Love", which reached #2 on the U.S. singles chart. They also had hits in Britain with the aforementioned three singles, as well as "Give Me All Your Love", which reached #18.

"Here I Go Again" and "Crying In The Rain" originally appeared on the Saints & Sinners album. These songs were rerecorded for the new release here. An alternate radio version of "Here I Go Again" of this album's recording did not appear on the album but was later included as a bonus track on Whitesnake's Greatest Hits.

All videos from the album earned substantial airplay on MTV in part due to appearances by Tawny Kitaen, then the wife of Whitesnake lead singer David Coverdale.

A remastered reissue of the album featuring a DVD with videoclips and live performances was released as a 20th anniversary edition.