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"These Days" Review 23 November 2003
BJ Obviously Needs Alec...

Too Depressing

A review by GX /

Bon Jovi obviously must have been extremely depressed about losing Alec John Such. This depression infests the lyrical content of this album. Its hard to believe the same bad that wrote the incredible Keep The Faith wrote this as their followup. Not that there's anything wrong with slow and/or depressing songs (For instance, "Its hard letting you go" is a great song) however taken as a whole this album is too dark and slow to be enjoyable.

I bought the CD on release date, and after the first listen through I wondered, "What happened? Did Bon Jovi forget how to rock?" Because they definitely don't "rock" anywhere on this album, with the exception to the intro on "Hey God." Bon Jovi has always rocked on other albums. And they've always had fun and/or songs of hope on other CD's. That's why I became a BJ fan - but none of that is to be found here. They try too hard to be socially significant and mature, and then they confuse maturity with meloncholy hopelessness. Big turn off. The only really meloncholy song I can think of prior to this album was Dry County. Dry County was a great song on a spectacular album. None of the meloncholy songs on this CD can even hold a candle to Dry County. Here's my song by song breakdown:

1. Hey God: As a person of faith, the indignant addressing of God is a lil' difficult for me to swallow. Plus, it's ridiculous for a bunch multimillionaires to write a song such as this ham-handed attempt at social commentary. As people who've been incredibly "blessed" BJ are in a position to "share the blessing" if you will. "It seems like all the good shits gone?" Puhleez! Take a look at your house! I just write this off as misplaced anger because they're stuck with Huey instead of Alec.

2. Something For Pain: The sitar idea could've been cool, but this song is pretty average, and once again lyrically a downer.

3. This Aint a Love Song: The only single I remember being released. This song is okay, but doesn't hold up to any ballads from NJ, KTF, or even Silent Night from Farenheit

4. These Days: Not a catchy song. Not a fun song. Again, more complaining my millionaire rock stars, and too much of a forced effort at social commentary.

5. Lie To Me: I like this song. This is a good sad song. However at this point, the whole album has been a downer and this is not whats needed.

6. Damned: JBJ wants to have an affair on Dorthea with Diane Lane. Musically, its average, and lyrically its just not fun. Another downer

7.I have Bleeding Guitar Arms: See comments for Lie to Me.

8. It's hard letting you go: The Best Song on the CD. It's awesome. Sure it's sad, but there's a genuine universality to the sadness. Everyone who's ever gon through a break up can relate. This is unlike the previous contrived sad songs, where millionaires lament being poor and feeling abandoned by God.

9. Hearts Breaking Even: "Hey Ritchie. Where's Desmond? We're obviously having trouble writing a decent album w/o him and Alec." "I dunno Jon, haven't seen him." "Hmmm. Hey that song 'Crying' by Aerosmith was a pretty big hit last year, huh?" "Yeah, why?" "I'm thinking we'll release that song. People like it. We'll just change the words so they don't know its the same song."

10. Something to Believe in: Didn't Poison sing a much better song by the same name? Too bad Tico's only notable percussion efforts on all of BJ's albums are wasted on this song. "If I don't believe in heroin, how can I believe in dope"??? Lame. Again, guys complaining who have nothing to complain about.

11. If that's what it takes: This song is okay. Not good, just okay.

12. Diamond Ring: Hi, lets end a slow depressing CD with a slow accoustic song about an inanimate object. Hey Bon Jovi, if you want to know how to end an album, listen to "Little Bit of Soul" or "Wild in the Streets."

13 & 14: I have no idea. I live in America, and for some reason Bon Jovi likes to diss their fellow countrymen and not release songs on the American releases which they release on foreign versions.

Rating: 3/10

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