With Whitesnake’s last two live albums getting released so closely together (read my reviews here and here), I’ve had the band on my mind a bit lately. I got to thinking about some of my favorite Whitesnake songs that never achieved the commercial status or set-list staying power of classics like “Here I Go Again”, “Still of the Night”, “Is This Love”, “Slide It In”, “Don’t Break My Heart Again”, “Love Ain’t No Stranger”, “Slow an’ Easy”, “Slip of the Tongue”, “Fool For Your Loving”, “Walking in the Shadow of the Blues” or “Ain’t No Love in the Heart of the City”.
In no particular order, here’s five Whitesnake songs that I think are pretty swell, yet underrated by the world at large:
Spit It Out
Album: Slide It In (1984)
Spit it out and slide it in! In general, I feel like the Slide It In album is underrated. I say this even though the album was the band’s first taste of success in the U.S. (over 2 million copies sold!) and “Slow an’ Easy”, “Love Ain’t No Stranger” and “Slide It In” are in the set-list rotation to this day fairly regularly. Still, the album seems forgotten whenever Whitesnake is discussed. People like to either focus on the 1987 self-titled mega-hit album or on how much of a polished dud the follow-up (Slip of the Tongue) was.
Okay, there’s probably a very good reason that “Spit It Out” is ignored by fans and the band alike in this day and age. It’s Whitesnake at their hair metal best/worst (depending on your point of view) and it’s a song about, well… it’s pretty easy to figure out. The lyrics are immature, sexist, raunchy, cheesy and done in poor taste. But, it’s still a fun song.
Album: Restless Heart (1997)
Although the Restless Heart album was intended to be a solo album for David Coverdale, the label intervened and insisted that the Whitesnake name be used. It’s really not that big of a deal because Coverdale is Whitesnake (plus, Adrian Vandenberg played on this album). Also, this album has never been released in the U.S. so it’s no wonder it hasn’t received much recognition! The song “Restless Heart” is my favorite from the album and I think it would be great if the ‘snakes dusted this one off for a live setting.
Album: Saints & Sinners (1982)
If only the band was able to break in the United States sooner… maybe this one could’ve become a strip club anthem right alongside “Girls, Girls, Girls”, “Pour Some Sugar On Me”, “Cherry Pie” and “Hot for Teacher”!
Album: Lovehunter (1979)
To be fair, this one turned up on the band’s first live album. But that was in their earlier days and as the band went on their quest for commercial success, I think this song (along with most of their early material) fell by the wayside. “Love Hunter” is yet another song I can imagine going down quite well in a live setting in this day and age and with the current line-up of the band.
If You Want Me
Album: Live: In the Shadow of the Blues (2006)
This song is not so old and I had a tough time deciding between this song and “Ready to Rock” from the this album. I think “If You Want Me” best represents the band’s past and present and definitely shows where the band was heading later on with the Good to Be Bad and Forevermore albums. The song was one of four new studio songs added included on the second disc of the band’s third live album. Live: In the Shadows of the Blues is a great live album that came in a bit under the radar itself as it was the first Whitesnake release (not counting the usual money-grubbing compilations put out by the label) in about 8 years.
The reason I’m including “If You Want Me” on this list is because, to my knowledge, the band never played live. Or if they did, it must not have been for a very long time. I think this song, “Ready to Rock” and “Dog” are tracks that are very worthy of being performed live. The band uses Good to Be Bad and Forevermore material so much in their set-list, these songs would fit right in.