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WHITESNAKE - Flesh And Blood

Release date May 10/19 (Frontiers)

The ol' love hunter is back....and yes, he IS guilty of love ... over and over and over again. On their 13th studio album over the last 41 years, Whitesnake have crafted 14 "love" songs lasting about an hour that are generally reminiscent of the late 80s version of the band.

David Coverdale's vocals remain strong, despite his status as a senior citizen, but his lyrics are mired in the 70s (or 60s?). Virtually all Whitesnake songs are about wanting love, having love or losing love. It has to be said that the unintentionally humorous nature of the "romantic" stories being told here is starting to wear thin as the 21st century marches on.

"We'll make love in the cool moonlight. You know I'm gonna treat you right, now, baby." Seriously, Spinal Tap should be jealous.

Musically there is a range of tunes on this album, running from arena rock to a ballad or two. Fans of the 70s version of the band will especially enjoy the bluesy "When I Think of You (Colour me Blue)", despite the overt and repeated wheezing as Coverdale draws breath. The opening song is a rousing rocker about rocking (musically, not with your baby) called "Good to See You Again", and is probably the strongest song on the album. Another old school heavy rock song worthy of the band's catalogue is "Trouble is Your Middle Name".

Tommy Aldridge takes the drummer's stool again, having sat on it on and off for over 30 years, and age isn't slowing him down at all. Twin guitarists Joel Hoekstra and Reb Beach handle writing duties with Coverdale, and do a decent job with their instruments as well.

Generally this is an effort that is typical of the latter half of the band's discography, which to these ears is weaker than the first half, but still entertaining in short bursts.


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