Whitesnake – Slide It In (1984, Geffen)
- Slide It In
- Slow An’ Easy
- Love Ain’t No Stranger
- All Or Nothing
- Guilty Of Love
- Hungry For Love
- Give Me More Time
- Spit It Out
- Standing In The Shadow
David Coverdale – Lead Vocals
Micky Moody – Guitars
Mel Galley – Guitars
Jon Lord – Keyboards
Cozy Powell – Drums
Neil Murray – Bass (on U.S. version)
Colin Hodgkinson – Bass (on International version)
John Sykes – additional Guitars ( on U.S. version)
Producer: Martin Birch
(NOTE: There are two versions of this album with different track orders. The U.K./International release highlights the keyboards and bass in the mix while the U.S. version lowers both instruments to be more radio friendly in the States. Also, John Sykes adds additional guitar parts over Moody & Galley and Neil Murray plays bass instead of Hodgkinson. The version reviewed here is the U.S. mix.)
Total Time = 40:40
It’s off to the arenas for Coverdale and company when SLIDE IT IN is released in 1984. Led by the the hit singles ‘Slow An’ Easy’, ‘Slide It In’, ’Guilty Of Love’ and ‘Love Ain’t No Stranger’, the band traded in their Blues Rock formula for the U.S. radio friendly sound of Hard Rock/Heavy Metal.
‘Slide It In’ kicks off the album with it’s juvenile cock Rock lyrics and blazing guitar while ‘Slow An’ Easy’ is an arena stomper that mirrors ‘Slide It In’ with the sexually charged lyrics but slower in tempo and a touch of “old” Whitesnake blues groove. ‘Love Ain’t No Stranger’ starts off slow, almost like a ballad, but kicks into another uptempo rocker. This trio of songs sets the stage of what is to come from the band in coming years for slick and polished arena styled anthems. It’s interesting to note that this U.S. version puts these three similar styled songs at the front of the album to cater to American tastes whereas the U.K. version has them mixed throughout the record to make it seem more diverse.
Once we get past the first three songs, there is some quality Hard Rock to come. ‘All Or Nothing’ follows the same formula as the first three but it has more groove like earlier Whitesnake. Jon Lord’s keyboards are more prominent in the mix adding a rootsy layer to the sound. More keys open ‘Gambler’, a mid-paced stomper that brings Deep Purple to mind. Coverdale uses his deeper bluesier delivery rather than the over the top technique he uses on the openers. ‘Guilty of Love’ could be found guilty of being a Thin Lizzy tune with the twin lead attack of Moody & Galley but Lord’s keys keep it Whitesnake. This is another song that is more like previous albums rather than a preview of what’s to come later in the decade. Same with ‘Hungry For Love’, another blues based Hard Rock song that could fit into any earlier record.
Next is ‘Give Me More Time’ and ‘Spit It Out’. Both are uptempo Hard Rock songs with a very similar guitar line, if you listen closely you can almost interchange each song. The difference is that ‘Spit It Out’ is more juvenile in the lyrics and the song pairs up well with the title track. Of course, any song with the lyric “Spit it out, if you don’t like it” was enough of an innuendo for us teens to shock our parents with. Coverdale is talking about a kiss in the lyrics but we all knew what he meant, LOL! ‘Standing In The Shadow’ is a keyboard laced single that easily translated into U.S. airwaves due to it’s Pop Rock accessibility. The guitar solo sounds a bit hollow to me but you can really hear Powell knocking the kit around.
A classic album! My favorite of the entire Whitesnake catalog. What makes this album great is that it is the middle ground where early bluesy Whitesnake meets the arena-sized behemoth that the band would become three years down the road. The lesser known songs, the non-singles, are some of the best band compositions of the ’80s while the radio anthems propelled the band into the spotlight. I get sick of ‘Slide It In’ and ‘Slow An’ Easy’ at times, probably because of the overplaying, but they are much better songs then the singles to come on future records. The real gems are the the album cuts (‘All Or Nothing’, ‘Guilty Of Love, ‘Spit It Out’, etc.) that didn’t get the airplay but enhanced the overall record. SLIDE IT IN is a classic album that seems to get lost due to the band’s future success, a success that is based on this album. Favorite tracks: ‘Love Ain’t No Stranger’, ‘Spit It Out’, ‘All Or Nothing’, ‘Guilty Of Love’…..and those first two!