Whitesnake: ‘Made In Japan’

Whitesnake - Made In JapanWHITESNAKE
MADE IN JAPAN
Released on April 22, 2013 (Frontiers Records)

Review:
After releasing arguably seven greatest hits compilations from 2000 to 2006, Whitesnake‘s frontman and main man David Coverdale figured out a new way on how he can get more mileage from the Whitesnake hits over and over again. The answer of course is to release live record upon live record. From 2011 to 2014, Whitesnake released not one, not two, not three, but four live records! Throw in 2006’s Live: In the Shadow Of the Blues and that is a lot of live albums in a short time span! That being said, I am not complaining since most of the releases have sometimes a few, sometimes a lot, of different tracks and represent for the most parts various Whitesnake eras. If anything — if you are like me — you get to pick and choose which live record to purchase since you haven’t picked up all of Whitesnake‘s latest live releases in the last couple of years.

So why pick up Made In Japan over Made In Britain / The World Record or Live In 1984: Back To The Bone? In my case, it was simply because Made In Japan was cheaper than the other two more recent releases. I was also intrigued by the bonus audio CD consisting of songs played during sound checks while the band was going through its 2011 Japanese Tour. Most of the tracks from the sound check sessions originate from Whitesnake‘s studio record, the very good Forevermore, and a little over half of the tracks are performed acoustically. That really is the highlight of Made In Japan because the DVD / CD of the band’s performance at “Loud Park” in Japan, while being a solid one, is also nothing really special.

In fact, the track list for the main DVD / CD on Made In Japan is essentially the same as the one for the ‘Made in Britain’ CD of Made in Britain / The World Record except that Made in Japan has two unnecessary “tracks” — a drum solo and the “Six String Showdown”. Talk about killing the momentum about halfway in for both the DVD and CD and especially the latter. No matter how good Coverdale‘s all-star cast of guitarists Reb Beach and Doug Aldrich, bassist Michael Devlin and drummer Brian Tichy really are, having to listen and/or view a drum solo and guitar solo in a three track span is simply painful.

All of the expected big Whitesnake hits can be found on Made in Japan including “Fool For Your Loving”, “Here I Go Again”, “Is This Love” and of course “Still Of The Night”. The rest of the songs aside from the drum and guitar solos are mostly new tracks from the last two Whitesnake studio records including the very good “Best Years”, the lovely “Forevermore” and the easy to sing along “Love Will Set You Free”. Upon reflection, I should have paid a few extra dollars and bought Made In Britain / The World Record or Live In 1984: Back To The Bone rather than Made In Japan.

Disc 1: Made in Japan DVD Track List:
01. Best Years
02. Give Me All Your Love Tonight
03. Love Ain’t No Stranger
04. Is This Love
05. Steal Your Heart Away
06. Forevermore
07. Six String Showdown
08. Love Will Set You Free
09. Drum Solo
10. Fool For Your Loving
11. Here I Go Again
12. Still Of The Night

Disc 2: Made in Japan CD
01. Best Years
02. Give Me All Your Love Tonight
03. Love Ain’t No Stranger
04. Is This Love
05. Steal Your Heart Away
06. Forevermore
07. Six String Showdown
08. Love Will Set You Free
09. Drum Solo
10. Fool For Your Loving
11. Here I Go Again
12. Still Of The Night

Disc 3: Made in Japan Bonus Audio CD
“Sound Check” Versions From The 2011 Japanese Tour
01. Love Will Set You Free
02. Steal Your Heart Away
03. Fare Thee Well (Acoustic Version)
04. One Of These Days (Acoustic Version)
05. Lay Down Your Love
06. Evil Ways
07. Good To Be Bad (Acoustic Version)
08. Tell Me How (Acoustic Version)

Band Members:
David Coverdale – vocals
Doug Aldrich – guitar, vocals
Reb Beach – guitar, vocals
Michael Devlin – bass, vocals
Brian Tichy – drums, vocals

Additional Musician:
Brian Ruedy – keyboards, vocals

Production:
DVD produced by Devin DeHaven and Michael McIntyre
Mixed by The Brutal Brothers (David Coverdale, Doug AldrichMichael McIntyre and assisted by Matthew Young)
Executive Producer: David Coverdale
Audio mastered by Dave Donnelly

Band Websites:
Official Website
Facebook
Twitter

Reviewed by Olivier for Sleaze Roxx, July 2015