It's been a long and lovely ride...and it ain't over
The best album since New Jersey
For the better part of the last decade Bon Jovi has experimented with their music to show the change, growth and majurity of their lives. "These Days" was a pretty radical departure from their days of pop metal glory in the late 80's, however it was in the minds of many Bon Jovi fans, their best album. I enjoyed "These Days", but it doesn't compare to "Slippery When Wet" in terms of it's feel good overall appeal. After all "Sliipery" is the album that put them and 90% of their fan base on the map. The ensuing album "New Jersey" helped to define the band as one of the all time greats of any era in rock music.
"Crush" takes the power and raw energy of "Slippery" and "New Jersey" and combines it with the maturity and depth of the ensuing albums. The song writing is more defined and layered than it was on the earlier albums, yet more importantly, it rekindles the "raise your hand, get your ass out of the seat", music that started the bands rise to the top. The first track "It's my Life" is an autobiographical "Livin' on a Prayer" that shows how the band is comfortable with who they are 14 years and 80 million records later. This is the overall message that is continued throughout the album. "Thank You for Loving Me", "Mystery Train" and "Save The World" are all ballads that are reminescent of songs such as "Always", "Bed of Roses", and "I'll Be There For You" but they are fresh in their style and presentation. Two story town has that "Wanted" feeling to it, with lyrics that you will find singing to yourself days later. Finally, "Captain Crash", "I Got the Girl" and "One Wild Night" are in the same realm as "Wild in the Streets", "Sleep When I'm Dead" and "Give me Something for the Pain."
All in all, there is something for every Bon Jovi fan. Whether you like the rockers or ballads there is something for everyone. The great mix of old school energy with present day wisdom is what makes this album so much fun to listen to. By far this is the most complete representation of the band outside of a greatest hits compilation like "Cross Roads", with the difference being that it was all written and composed at the same time. This album is why I like Rock N' Roll and Bon Jovi, and it is something that todays music scene has been lacking. Simply put, this is a must have for any true, feel good rock n' roll fan.