WHITESNAKE / BAD ENGLISH
The Summit, Houston, Texas, USA
March 16th, 1990
This was Bad English’s first date on the Whitesnake tour and they came out with every intention of making sure the Summit crowd were pleased. From the opening number (‘Best Of What I Got’) to the finale (a stunning acoustic version of John Waite’s ‘Missing You’), Bad English were nothing short of GREAT!
This was 45-minutes of sheer pleasure which contained seven flawless songs from their debut album. It led me to believe that if they need another band to add to the Donington line-up, they couldn’t go far wrong with Bad English. If I had any qualms at all, it would have to be Neil Schon’s heavy guitar solo at the end of ‘Ghost In Your Heart’ ’cos it didn’t seem to fit. But hell, who cares? Schon is a mega guitarist after all.
After such a brilliant start to the evening one also wondered how, or even if, David Coverdale and company could top it. For the thought to cross my mind I must have been mad, for not only did Whitesnake top it, they turned this into the most amazing gig I have ever been to. ‘Supergroup’ would be a label not good enough for this band.
Tommy Aldridge and Rudy Sarzo delivered the driving rhythms (musically… and in Rudy’s case sexually!), Adrian Vandenberg and Steve Vai teased and pleased with their astonishing axework, and a super fit David Coverdale dished out some of the heaviest “tongue” you’ll ever hear. Forget cock rock, sex rock and the like; Whitesnake are multiple orgasm rock ’n’ roll and Houston lapped it up, coming back for more… and more… and more.
Opening with ‘Slip Of The Tongue’ and ‘Slide It In’, Whitesnake took an already warmed up crowd and drained them of every ounce they had. This was (believe it or not) the 39th time I had seen Coverdale, and I can honestly say that I have never seen him this good.
‘Judgement Day’ was a fine example of how the two V’s work together (just in case people doubted that it would work), with their excellent dual guitar trickery and their respective guitar solo spots enough to make the average guitar player go home and rehearse forever. Everything about this show was precise. I only hope that Europe gets to see the full stage show, ’cos even that, with the array of lights and backdrops, was beyond belief. Particularly of note was the stained glass window effect obtained by Vari-Lite.
What else can I say… Whitesnake made love to this audience for nearly two hours, at the end of which every punter there was totally knackered. If you ever get the chance to see this band, then don’t hesitate, right? Am I going to Donington? A year’s supply of condoms and seven vestal virgins wouldn’t keep me away!
Review taken from Metal Forces, Issue 50 (1990)