New Jersey - Bon Jovi

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New Jersey - Bon Jovi

Hard Rock - StudioRecording - 1 CD(s) - Label: Mercury, Jambco - Distributor: Universal Music - Released: 04/09/2000 - 731453802421

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Review of "New Jersey - Bon Jovi"

published 05/05/2008 | Lukejones1
Member since : 02/05/2008
Reviews : 11
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Pro A classic rock album
Quality and consistency of tracks
Cover / Inlay Design and Content
Value for Money

"New Jersey: An album that cemented a reputation"

The album that cemented Bon Jovis' reputation as the premier hard rock band of the late eighties and ensured their place in the top echelons of the music industry. Coming off the back of the mega hit Slippery When Wet, Bon Jovi had a lot to live up to. Could they overcome the difficult second album? Could they deliver a more mature offering? The answer was yes.
This opus sees Bon Jovi refine their sound. In come even slicker production values and song arrangements to die for; the massive choruses are still there, but are delivered with warmth and a dignity which suggest they were creative pursuits and not just hit making devices (A trap that befell many of their comtempories). While the ballads are punctuated with a maturity and honesty beyond the high school crush sagas that were commonplace at the time.

The first track "Lay your Hands on Me" creates the perfect mood, setting off where Slippery When Wet left off. An off kilter intro opens into a full hard rock riff and gravely vocaled masterclass in how to construct and deliver a hard rock song.

"Bad Medicine" is much of the same and bacame a number one hit, utilizing some very tounge in cheek lyrics.

Born to be my Baby is an above par rock ballad with intresting arrangement and lung bursting choruses.

Most of the middle of New Jersey focuses heavily on the more mature lyrical content, "Living in Sin" a beautiful ballad highlighting the plight of a young couple fighting to maintain a relationship in the shadow of heavily religous parents is delivered with poise and clarity. While "Blood on Blood" muses on the different paths childhood friends take into life and the struggle to maintain those relationships. This song further accentuates the growing storytelling of Bon Jovis lyrics, an aspect of their craft that would garentee them longevity.

"Homebound Train" allows the shackles to be removed for all out hard rock. One could be forgiven for calling Bon Jovi too comecial but when the so called comercial songs are fused with integrity then it is a flawed case.

"Wild is the Wind" points to the future direction the band would explore more on Keep the Faith, in terms of both structure and lyrical content. The acoustic accompaniment gives the beginning of the song a certain majesty.

"Ride Cowboy Ride" is just over a minute of acoustic singing to the style of an old radio. Even though a stand alone track it somehow feels like an intro the next song.

"Stick to your Guns" is a call to arms to chase your dreams, to try to live them and to never back down; the acoustic and electric instrumentation gives the song an eloquent feel.

New Jersey ends with Bon Jovi doing what they do best. "I'll be There for You" a tugging of the heartstrings ballad that gave the band another number one hit. "99 in the Shade" feels like a boogie woogie song injected with a punch of distorted guitar and massive rythm section. The final track "Love for Sale" finishes the album on a comedic note, Richie Sambora and Jon Bon Jovi are clearly drunk, but the blues fused acoustic guitar and harmonica coupled with this apparent intoxication just heighten the sweaty bar room feel of the song.

Much of New Jersey is like this, the songs are more mature than previous Bon Jovi albums but are not delivered in a sombre way but in a positive way.
There are minor criticisms, the lyrics sometimes can be on the corny side, and heavily influenced by the Springsteen sound (No secret) but on the whole this album delivers big time. It was miles ahead of the peers of the time, catchy songs, awesome guitar, a sense of fun, and a promise of more future progress from a band that tries never to stand still. Buy this if you like hard rock, rock, or are just willing to give it a go.

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Comments on this review

  • daylehall published 05/05/2008
    Hello and welcome to Ciao. Your review will need a lot more info for you to get higher ratings. Try having a look at other peoples reviews on the same subject to give you an idea of what sort of info people are looking for. xx
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Manufacturer's product description

Hard Rock - StudioRecording - 1 CD(s) - Label: Mercury, Jambco - Distributor: Universal Music - Released: 04/09/2000 - 731453802421

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EAN: 731453802421


Listed on Ciao since: 18/07/2011