Review Summary: The turning point in Whitesnake’s career and their first step in conquering the US market.Slide It In
is a landmark within Whitesnake’s discography for a variety of reasons. To begin with, it’s the band’s final album with legend Jon Lord on keys and the sole effort with Cozy Powell on drums. Moreover, it’s the point where David Coverdale decided to make a conscious effort in trying to win the US market. Finally, it’s the last album that features the initial Whitesnake logo.
As a result of the above and the band’s partnership with Geffen Records, there are two versions of Slide It In
; the UK and the US one. Consisting of the same tracks but in different order, the US version features a more ‘metallic’ sound that suited better the American market, while John Sykes plays most guitar parts. In addition, Coverdale’s vocals and Sykes’ guitar are more prominent than on the UK version while the rhythm section and the keys are slightly lower in the mix. That was proven to be a correct decision as the US version has that oomph that the UK one lacked.
The actual content of the album is somewhat different than Whitesnake’s previous efforts in the sense that it’s less bluesy and more influenced by the growing (at the time) hair metal movement. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean that the final product sounds exactly like Van Halen, Ratt or Quiet Riot as it has Whitesnake’s characteristic hooks and blues rock influences. However, the music sounds more modern and heavy than Ready An’ Willing
. The emphasis is on catchy melodies and memorable riffs without having a negative impact on the music’s quality though. Tracks like, “Gambler” and “Slide It In” are bound to get stuck in the listener’s mind while “Love Ain’t No Stranger” is the standout track; with its highly effective buildup and the addictive vocal line, it’s probably one of the best hair/pop metal tracks of the ‘80s. In addition, Micky Moody’s substitution with John Sykes works for the better of the album as Sykes was/is one of the most competent glam guitarists. Moreover, Ian Paice’s replacement by Cozy Powell, provides Slide It In
with a more powerful/heavy metal drummer rather than one of the genre’s best when it comes to rhythm.
On the other hand, the band’s fixation with lyrics regarding women, sexual innuendos and saucy themes is bound to tire some listeners. Furthermore, on Slide It In
the band further strays from its roots which might alienate some of those who have a clear preference for Whitesnake’s pre-1982 work.
Overall if you’re a fan of the band or have only listened and dig Whitesnake
, chances are you’ll love this album. Its quality blend of blues rock and glam metal combined with Coverdale’s impressive voice and Sykes’ performance make Slide It In
a very attractive offering.