Giants Stadium Shows... as seen by USA Today
|"Bon Jovi in Jersey Is No '80s Throwback"
Reports of arena rock's death have been greatly exaggerated. In reality, the genre is alive and well and living in New Jersey, where local boys Bon Jovi enjoyed a triumphant homecoming at Giants Stadium Friday evening. The concert — which aired on VH1 Sunday night and will be rebroadcast this Thursday, Friday and Saturday — featured old and new hits served up with all the bells and whistles and smoke machines fans could have hoped for.
Anyone inclined to dismiss Bon Jovi as a relic of the hair-happy late '80s needed only to survey the packed venue, where teenagers too young to remember the group's heyday cheered alongside couples in their 30s and 40s toting excited tots, many of whom knew the words to numerous songs.
The musicians delighted the faithful by walking on stage and assuming the macho but good-humored stance of a righteous posse, with leader Jon Bon Jovi front and center. The pose evoked photos of an even more iconic Jersey group, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, during its recent reunion tour.
Indeed, Bon Jovi — and its singer in particular — seemed to be channeling Springsteen's spirit throughout the show, with an intensity that sometimes bordered on outright imitation. Introducing You Give Love a Bad Name, Jon assumed the role of rock 'n' roll preacher in a giddy sermon that bore a striking resemblance to one the Boss gave during the aforementioned road show. "Are you ready for a jubilation ... a celebration?" Jon asked the crowd, continuing to exult in rhyme as drummer Tico Torres, playing his Max Weinberg, provided pounding embellishment.
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Related URL: http://www.usatoday.com/life/music/2001-07-30-bon-jovi.htm