I was out at a record show here in Charlotte and I love to go digging at them when they come around. You never know what you will find and this last trip was no different. If you’ve been on the site, you know I’m a huge David Coverdale fan and that of course means a Whitesnake fan as well. I love to find obscure Whitesnake stuff and I believe this fits the bill. I never knew this existed so of course I had to have it. It is a best of compilation out of Greece. It is on EMI, but this wasn’t compiled by the band, nope. I am sure this was done to capitalize on the success of their self-titled album or as some call it, “1987”. This was released only in Greece in 1987 and other than the band name and song titles, the notes on the back are written in Greek.
The cover art work is really bad, which is why I think it is really cool. Just Coverdale on the cover with a snake wrapping around it. That same snake is on the back as well. Not very original to say the least. The copy I have has a label that is different than what is on Discogs so I think I have a different variant. My label is the “Liberty” label, the one on discogs has the Whitesnake logo on top, no Liberty. I think that is pretty cool too. All around, I was quite pleased to pick this up and add it to the Whitesnake collection.
The songs only have one song from the new album, “Still of the Night”, and the rest are from the back catalog and it goes deep and wide. Honestly, it is an interesting track listing with the exception of “Day Tripper” which I hate Whitesnake’s version, but we will get to that. Production wise, it is okay. Nothing stellar. “Still of the Night” isn’t as impressive as on the CD which hurts it I believe. Otherwise, it is all fine. Glad to have a copy.
“Still of the Night” is the opening single for the “1987” album and the taste of what was to come. This was a new Snake, a hungrier Snake, a more badass Snake. It has some blues elements of the old Whitesnake, but Sykes took it, distorted it and turned it on its ass. David’s swagger on belting out the opening verse is full of confidence and aggression and exactly what every teenage boy wanted to hear (and girl wanted to see). The guitar solo on this was awesome, almost a cello/violin/string instrument orchestration to the whole thing. Pretty freaking cool. And last a fun fact, this song was based off an old demo David and Ritchie Blackmore had worked on back in the Purple days.
The first single and hit smashing song, “Don’t Break My Heart Again” off the 1981 ‘Come An’ Get It’ album It reached #17 on the UK Charts and is actually one of my favorite Whitesnake songs. The song is about David first marriage (and I think “Fool For Your Loving” is too). It opens with Lord on organ and then Neil’s throbbing bass. David delivers some emotional and heavy lyrics and the song has a great drum beat throughout and then Bernie delivers on the solo. One of David’s finest performances on this album and many albums. Smoking track.
“Only My Soul” is a fantastic rock ballad with a great soulful feel to it in the guitars playing. This has Whitesnake all over it. Alan Spenner, on bass, lays down a nice groove with the keyboards playing along with it during the musical interlude before David comes back and brings it home. The song is off the 8 song, double E.P. ‘Snakebite’. Deep choice here, really cool.
‘Blindman’, which is a re-work of the song from David’s first solo album called ‘Whitesnake’, is off the album’Ready An’ Willing’. In what could be one of David’s best performance as he brings so much more emotion and pain in his delivery, this song is the gem in an album full of them. It has a slow groove and is another blues track which has the band at its best. Bernie’s understated solo was what the song needed. It fit perfectly with the vibe. The song was great on the solo album, but taken to another level here.
Side one ends with “Guilty of Love” which is a bombastic thrill ride. It is the only song produced by Eddie Kramer. It is a fun ride, a little repetitive, but still a rocking track. The UK version has a dual guitar solo, but the US version is all John Sykes. Not the song I would pick off ‘Slide it In’, but still a fun song.
The band’s first single and first hit outside the UK was the song “Fool For Your Loving”. Yes, Whitesnake fans that came on board in the late 80’s know this song from the album ‘Slip of the Tongue’. However, this was the original and first release of the song which went to #13 in the UK and #53 in the US. The song was written by Marsden (who had the riffs and the verses), Moody (who wrote the bridge) and Coverdale (who did the lyrics). The funny thing about the song is that it was originally written for BB King, however, they soon realized the song was too good to pass up…and they were right.
This version of the song is more bluesy and has a nice groove and not as rocking as the hair metal version, but that is okay. You have Bernie belting out a great solo that is so different than Vai’s version. Since I grew up with the ‘Slip of the Tongue’ version, this version feels like a demo to me and I am actually turn to which one I like more. This fits the sound of the band at this point in their career and the other fits that version of the band. Tough choice…I will let you decide.
The title track of the ‘Lovehunter’ album, “Lovehunter”, is full of David’s sexually inappropriate lyrics and even in today’s #MeToo movement, I don’t give a shit. His lyrics still rock. The song has the that blues tone and some serious slide guitar by Micky Moody and Neil Murray’s bass line is fantastic and lays down the coolest groove. Along with Moody’s slide guitar you get a twin solo with both Moody and Marsden. It is that duo that really brings this one home.
“Here I Go Again” is up in all its original glory. Again, this isn’t the song you know from the ‘1987’ album, this is another beast of its own from the ‘Saints & Sinners’ album. One of the big differences is no synthesizers on this one. It is Jon Lord’s organ instead. It kicks it off and gives it an almost church-like feel to it. It kicks in full force and doesn’t quite meet the energy of the latter version, but has its own feel and groove. Another big difference is the line “like a hobo, I was born to walk alone”. In the latter version, that “hobo” becomes a “drifter” and I have to say “drifter” sounds so much better. The hobo part is this song’s only fault. Again, this is not as bombastic as the re-recorded version, but doesn’t need to be.
From the ‘Trouble’ album, David goes back to his blues roots as he covers Bobby Bland’s “Ain’t No Love in the Heart of the City” written by Michael Price and Dan Wise. This love song is down and dirty, a blues rock song slowed down into a beautiful ballad. Oh, and the solo…wow! It fit the song so well and pulled out even more emotion. Not even an original, this song is a signature Whitesnake classic as they are still known to pull this one out and play it live.
Then we get the horrible cover of the Beatles’ “Day Tripper” off the album ‘Trouble’. It is…let’s say…not good. It is uninspiring and bluh. The adding in of the Framptonesque Talk Box doesn’t help and I really can’t stand it. I hope that point is coming across. Skip/Delete whatever you do, just avoid it.
And that is it. For the most part, a really cool selection of tracks. Not a compilation I would put together, but maybe the Greeks really liked it. Still a cool piece in the collection though as I don’t think I have a Greek album release. My Overall Score is a 3.5 out of 5.0 Stars due to the production and the addition of “Day Tripper” what a wrong song choice. Why pick a cover when they have so many great songs…”Ain’t No Love in the Heart of the City is different as that is a cover that the band made it their song!!
If you want to check out the complete David Coverdale Series, start clicking away below…
The David Coverdale Series:
- Deep Purple – Burn
- Deep Purple – Stormbringer
- Deep Purple – Come Taste the Band
- Deep Purple – Made in Europe
- David Coverdale – Whitesnake
- Deep Purple – Last Concert in Japan
- David Coverdale – Northwinds
- David Coverdale’s Whitesnake – Snakebite
- Whitesnake – Trouble
- Whitesnake – Lovehunter
- Whitesnake – Ready an’ Willing
- Whitesnake – “Fool For Your Loving” 7″ Single (Bonus Review)
- Whitesnake – Live…in the Heart of the City
- Whitesnake – Come An’ Get it
- Deep Purple – Live in London
- Whitesnake – Saints & Sinners
- Whitesnake – Slide It In
- Whitesnake – “Give Me More Time” 12″ Single (Bonus Review)
- Whitesnake – ‘The Best of Whitesnake (Bonus Review – 1982 release)
- Whitesnake – Whitesnake (1987)
- Whitesnake – “Is This Love” 12″ Promo (Bonus Review)
- Whitesnake – ‘Best’ (Greece Version)
- Whitesnake – Slip of the Tongue
- David Coverdale – “The Last Note of Freedom” – Single Review
- Coverdale/Page – Coverdale/Page
- Coverdale/Page – “Take Me For A Little While 12” Single (Bonus Review)
- David Coverdale & Whitesnake – Restless Heart
- Whitesnake – Starkers in Tokyo
- David Coverdale – Into the Night
- Whitesnake – Live…In the Still of the Night (DVD)
- Whitesnake – Live…In the Shadow of the Blues
- Whitesnake – Good To Be Bad
- Whitesnake – Forevermore
- Whitesnake – Live at Donington 1990: Monsters of Rock
- Whitesnake – The Purple Album
- Whitesnake – The Purple Tour (Live)
- Whitesnake – Flesh & Blood
- Whitesnake – The Rock Album
- Whitesnake – Love Songs
- Whitesnake – The Blues Album
- Whitesnake – The Albums Ranked Worst to First
- David Coverdale – The Albums Ranked Worst to First
Other David Coverdale Albums reviewed – (Box Sets and Bootlegs):
- Whitesnake – 1987 (30th Anniversary Edition) – Box Set
- Whitesnake – Slide It In (35th Anniversary Edition) – Box Set
- Whitesnake – Unzipped – Box Set
- Whitesnake – Slip of the Tongue (30th Anniversary Edition) – Box Set
- Whitesnake (Snake) – Still of the Night Live in Battle Creek, Mich. July 26, 1987 (Bootleg)
10 thoughts on “Whitesnake – ‘Best’ (1987) – Album Review (The David Coverdale Series)”
Great find! I didn’t even know they made releases like that for Greeks. And I agree, that album cover is terrible!
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Thanks. I love finding this kind of stuff. It is really cool. And yes, almost all bands will have some weird releases like this that are country specific. Especially bands that have been around awhile. But might be my first Greek pressing.
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Ah ok, I guess international pressings are more ways to get exposure for the band!
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Yeah bad cover but cool at the same time. This looks like if anything a good starter pack for introducing W.S. Now get back to it you hobo ..er, I mean drifter lol
great find but yes horrible cover.
Nice score, these oddball international comps are pretty cool. I almost think it works better with the awful cover, makes it stand out even if not in a great way.
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I like these things even if I complain about them. I think they are cool to have in the collection.
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Wow Only My Soul on a best off. I would have purchased it just for that track list.
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Bad cover or not, I still think it is cool. And yes that track was not expected.