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Bon Jovi still partying like it’s 1986 11 December 2005
Boston Herald article

Source: Boston Herald

It’s all about the hookup. The opening bands for megawatt rockers Bon Jovi at ‘The Garden’ last night and tonight, number Boston-grown rock bands Damone and Era for a Moment, respectively. How did the lucky unsigned acts (Damone recently lost its RCA deal after one album) hook up with the hoary hair metal beast that is the ever-popular Bon Jovi?

They submitted their art to that age-old pop ordeal, the talent contest. Specifically, Bon Jovi and XM Satellite Radios’ “Have a Nice Gig’‘ battle of the bands competition.

Damone stepped right up to the plate, delivering keen, melodic hard rock - and with such confidence that you’d never think the female-fronted quartet’s last gig was upstairs at the Middle East, two nights earlier.

Though Friday’s show was sold-out, as is tonight’s, Damone played to plenty of empty seats. Clearly Bon Jovi doesnt need any hookup. No, the New Jersey superstars sold every darn ticket on their own sweat.

Not literal sweat. Bon Jovi, the clean-cut pop metal act that broke with the naughtily titled “Slippery When Wet” almost 20 years ago, doesn’t sweat. But then, expanded to a seven-piece, with an additional guitarist and keyboard player, the musical workload was spread out.

Old school guitarist Richie Sambora’s grimaces and fret grappling, and Jon Bongiovi’s fine big voice and blond-moment prancing aside, the essence of Bon Jovi’s appeal is the good old bouncy sing-along. Newer songs (“I’ll Sleep When Im Dead”) and downright oldies (“Runaway”) mixed with those from this year’s album, “Have A Nice Day.” A cover of the Jeff Lynne/Tom Petty-penned anthem “I Won’t Back Down” was an elegantly solemn addition.

But it was the unbridled Jovi hits (“You Give Love A Bad Name,” “Livin On A Prayer” and the comeback anthem “It’s My Life”) that triggered that euphoric but scary tremor of human voice en masse.


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