Whitesnake - "Forevermore" CD Review / Show at Irving Plaza on May 18th ~ BrooklynRocks: NYC Music Blog

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Whitesnake - "Forevermore" CD Review / Show at Irving Plaza on May 18th

Whitesnake - 'Forevermore' CD Review / Show at Irving Plaza on May 18thI’ve gotten a bit cynical with some of the longer-running acts as they eventually seem to run out of creative “juice” in the studio (like The Rolling Stones and The Who) so I approached Whitesnake’s eleventh studio release, Forevermore, with some degree of trepidation. The good news is that David Coverdale and crew do justice to Whitesnake’s legacy. Fans of any era of Whitesnake should find something to like here as the band’s sound on this new album touches upon all points of their career - from their blues-rock 70’s roots to their 80’s radio-friendly hooks to their 90’s acoustic balladry. While I’m preferential to the blues-rock era, Forevermore contains a number of tracks that make me remember why I liked this band in the first place and only a small number of misses.

David Coverdale has always excelled at pulling top-notch guitarists into Whitesnake to serve as songwriting partners. As with Good to Be Bad, Coverdale co-wrote this new ten-track/60 minute disc with Doug Aldrich. Guitarist Reb Beach is the only other hold-over from Good to Be Bad and the new members are bassist Michael Devin (Lynch Mob) and drummer Brian Tichy (Pride & Glory).

The disc kicks off “Steal Your Heart Away” which sounds like early 80’s era Whitesnake. While David Coverdale doesn’t quite have the vocal power that he had twenty years ago (no surprise – who does?), his distinctive voice has held up well. In keeping with the classic Whitesnake sound, Aldrich and Beach deliver powerful melodic guitar riffs and solos and the razor-tight rhythm section is also high in the mix. Some of the other stand-out, hard rock cuts are “Whipping Boy Blues” and “Love and Treat Me Right”.

Where this disc differs from what I remember of past Whitesnake is the use of more backing vocals (include a female singer on the first single “Love Will Set You Free” who adds an element of 70’s funk) and a more eclectic set of songs. Mixed with the hard rock tunes are more mid-tempo power ballads and acoustic numbers than on past discs; some of which work (“Fare Thee Well”, “Forever More”) and others are pure cheese (“I Need You (Shine A Light)”, “One of These Days”).

Back in the 80’s, I remember the major labels issuing different bonus tracks on the cassette and CD versions of an album and I never could envision anyone buying a whole album a second time just to get one – two tracks. As there are five different sets of bonus tracks for Forevermore, this strategy apparently works.

Japanese Bonus Track:
“Whipping Boy Blues” (Swamp Mix)

Deluxe Edition Bonus Tracks:
“Love Will Set You Free” (Alternative Mix)
“Forevermore” (Acoustic version)
“My Evil Ways” (My Evil Drums Mix)

“Snake Pack” Bonus Tracks:
“Slide It In” Live
“Cheap an’ Nasty” Live
-Note: Tracks are essentially a teaser for the forthcoming Live at Donington 1990 CD/DVD set due out this June

iTunes Bonus Tracks:
“Love Will Set You Free” (Alternative mix)
“Forevermore” (Acoustic version)
“Love Will Set You Free” (Music video)

Amazon.com Bonus Track:
“My Evil Ways” (My Evil Drums Mix)

Whitesnake is heading out for a short US tour in May which includes a stop at Irving Plaza on May 18th. Tickets are still available and are $44.50.

Whitesnake US Tour Dates:
11 May 2011 Westbury, NY, USA @ Theatre at Westbury
12 May 2011 Hartford, CT, USA @ Webster Theatre
14 May 2011 Columbia, MD, USA @ M3 Festival - Merriweather
15 May 2011 Jim Thorpe, PA, USA @ Penns Peak
18 May 2010 NYC, USA @ Irving Plaza
20 May 2011 Biloxi, MS, USA @ Hard Rock Biloxi
21 May 2011 Kinder, LA, USA @ Grand Casino Coushatta
22 May 2011 Richardson, TX, USA @ Wildflower Arts and Music
24 May 2011 Southaven, MS, USA @ Snowdon Grove Amphitheater
26 May 2011 Park City, KS, USA @ Hartman Arena
27 May 2011 Pryor, OK, USA @ Rocklahoma