Lost Highway review by Bon Jovi

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  • Released: Jun 8, 2007
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 10
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.3 Superb
  • Users' score: 8 (119 votes)
Bon Jovi: Lost Highway
1

Sound — 7
Bon Jovi's last few albums have rapidly strayed from the rock genre that the band embraced back in the 80s, and it's latest CD Lost Highway bounces between adult contemporary and country more than ever before. While there's nothing wrong with letting go of the past, the CD just doesn't feel like the band's most original offering. Thankfully, there are some heartfelt songs (particularly in the lyrical department) that do deliver, with the always-reliable Desmond Child co-writing one of them. The band has always injected a strong country feel into many of it's songs, with Wanted Dead Or Alive and vocalist Jon Bon Jovi's solo Blaze Of Glory showing off the best of the country-rock style. Lost Highway actually feels more like a country album most of the time, dabbling heavily in adult contemporary country rather than old school Hank Williams. The production value is great, but it never approaches classic status like earlier hits like Wanted Dead Or Alive. Bon Jovi recruited the help of country stars like Leann Rimes (Till We Ain't Strangers Anymore) and Big & Rich (We Got It Going On), but the band is at it's strongest when it's just Jon Bon Jovi and guitarist Richie Sambora with a few guitars and harmonies. The best track is easily the single (You Want To) Make A Memory, which was co-written by Desmond Child, the man responsible for such hits as You Give Love A Bad Name and Livin' On A Prayer. It's just a beautiful, stripped down ballad that is the most original piece on Lost Highway. The song was the only one in which Child helped out in writing, and that's very telling. While nearly all of the songs have vivid and engaging lyrics, the melodies just don't make the same kind of impression that (You Want To) Make A Memory does.

Lyrics — 10
Bon Jovi has mastered the art of storytelling like many great country artists out there, and it's absolutely the high point on Lost Highway. The title track could easily be considered the road trip theme on the album thanks in part to some cleverly penned lyrics about the traveling life. Bon Jovi sings, In my rearview mirror; My life is getting clearer; The sunset sighs and slowly disappears, and later adds So I drive watching white lines passing by; With my plastic dashboard Jesus. Lost Highway is a great opening track thanks largely in part to the descriptive lyrics. Summertime is another track where it feels like we're getting a detailed day-to-day chronicle, courtesy of Bon Jovi. He sings, It feels something like summertime; I was a warm breeze with a cool tan; Life mapped out on the back of my hand; When God was laughing I was making my plans. Bon Jovi's careful choice of words creates an effective mood of nostalgia, which in the end is a theme he carries through most of the record.

Overall Impression — 8
Bon Jovi amazingly still has most of it's original members (Bon Jovi, Sambora, keyboardist David Bryan, and drummer Tico Torres), with the exception of bassist Hugh McDonald. Considering they are an extremely competent group of musicians, it would have been nice to see them showcase a few more piano or keyboard solos. There are quite a few tracks that are driven by run-of-the-mill chord progressions, and Sambora is just much better than that. But every once in while Sambora does break out the slide (Any Other Day) or talk box (We Got It Going On) and it usually pays off. Although Bon Jovi found it's original home amidst the hair metal crowd, the band has now found a cozy spot in the world of top 40 radio. For someone who grew up with a more rock-driven sound (and yes, I'm sure some out there might not call it rock), at times something does feel missing from the new CD. But the band does seem to have won a crowd over in the adult contemporary and country worlds, and those fans will likely be very content with the songs on Lost Highway.

38 comments sorted by best / new / date

    BB6
    What you guys have to realize is that these guys aren't in their twenties anymore, or even their thirties for that matter. They are getting much older and their music will reflect that. There's nothing worse than guys in their 50s still trying to act like their 23.
    amp714
    Aziraphale wrote: RichieJovie wrote: Nice to see all the metallers slagging off Bon Jovi. They don't get it do they? They aren't a metal band they are a pop rock band with country leanings, so... why do they even care? Very insecure these shred bedroom hero's Amen dude!
    i agree
    maiden4life
    BON JOVI SUCK ASS. they had 1 good album I think thats obvios what 1 that is(slippery when wet) And now theyve even become bigger sell outs then metallica. Brutal brutal brutal.
    ccatrackstar
    BON JOVI IS ONE OF THE GREATEST BANDS EVER. end of discussion on that topic. the new album is awesome and i own several other albums of there's and while each one has a different feel to it theyre all good in there own way.
    RichieJovie
    Nice to see all the metallers slagging off Bon Jovi. They don't get it do they? They aren't a metal band they are a pop rock band with country leanings, so... why do they even care? Very insecure these shred bedroom hero's
    amp714
    zerodeck wrote: Jovi lost his rock roots? what rock roots? since when is he even considered an artist?
    waht kind of music u like rap. bon jovi have been rockin for about 30 years and they have covered all most all types of music.
    dida1209
    Although I don't like country, I love this album. It's their best album since These Days. (At least, lyrically.) Any Other Day is one of the best songs they wrote in years.
    Aziraphale
    RichieJovie wrote: Nice to see all the metallers slagging off Bon Jovi. They don't get it do they? They aren't a metal band they are a pop rock band with country leanings, so... why do they even care? Very insecure these shred bedroom hero's
    Amen dude!
    dida1209
    Aziraphale wrote: butcherer wrote: bon jovi set the standard for female-friendly schlock. Sambora's guitar work is competent and uninspired, but chicks dig it, anyway. Listen to 'Love for Sale' or any acoustic version of Livin on a Prayer, or why not 'I'll sleep when I'm dead', and tell me that is unispired guitar work. Anyway, above anything, I think it's the collaboration with bubblegum-producer John Shanks that is the main reason why you hear so little of Richie in newer BJ. I've heard a few of the new songs live and they all sounded better than on the record, same thing goes with Have a Nice Day. The mix is so much better live, and the band is much more spontaneous.
    Or Dry County and Next 100 Years.
    Aziraphale
    hengler wrote: rocknroller1010 wrote: Bon Jovi sold 100,000,000 albums before Led Zepplin and they came out about ten years later. Yeah, record sales are always a good indicator of talent iirc. Kelly Clarkson \m/ (Note: I'm not a fan of Bon Jovi but I respect them. The Led Zep sales comparison is just silly and pointless.)
    Well there are a lot of bad things that could be said about American Idol but you will not win unless you actually can sing. Kelly Clarkson is a pretty damn good singer. If you want to refer to a talentless poptart then there are people like Hilary Duff, Paris Hilton and so on but Kelly Clarkson is actually very talented.
    luisaceo
    HEY, EVERY ONE, BON JOVI WAS GOOD 20 YEARS AGO, BUT THIS CD SUCKS, IVE BUY IT AND, I SERIOUSLY REGRET IT, look, there is a small difference between making things easier 4 u and thinking u r stupid. 4 example, telepizza makes things easier 4 u, bon jovi thinks ur r stupid, these guys keep on doing the same songs. Yes, theyve added some country stuff, but yet, also, only bon jovi could of called an album "lost highway", and put a car and a road in the cover, wich is nuthing but original, its a ****ing stereotipe, BON JOVI SUUUUCKS
    Alex guitar
    luisaceo wrote: HEY, EVERY ONE, BON JOVI WAS GOOD 20 YEARS AGO, BUT THIS CD SUCKS, IVE BUY IT AND, I SERIOUSLY REGRET IT, look, there is a small difference between making things easier 4 u and thinking u r stupid. 4 example, telepizza makes things easier 4 u, bon jovi thinks ur r stupid, these guys keep on doing the same songs. Yes, theyve added some country stuff, but yet, also, only bon jovi could of called an album "lost highway", and put a car and a road in the cover, wich is nuthing but original, its a ****ing stereotipe, BON JOVI SUUUUCKS
    Uh, and what exactly are you going to put on the cover of an album called "Lost Highway"? And how can you compare "Bed of Roses" to "Runaway"? Richie is a musical guitar player, he understands the songs and the meanings behind them, and makes the solo suit. He doesn't shred for the sake of shredding. Shred can be musical in the right context, but it isn't the be-all and end-all of guitar superiority. When you have played guitar in one of the bestselling in the world for 30 years, you have to be doing something right.
    RockGTar07
    luisaceo wrote: Yes, theyve added some country stuff, but yet, also, only bon jovi could of called an album "lost highway", and put a car and a road in the cover, wich is nuthing but original, its a ****ing stereotipe, BON JOVI SUUUUCKS
    and y dnt u tell me wat u believe would b suitable to put on a cover 4 an album called lost highway? u probably didnt even buy the cd, u saw these otha losers sayin that this album sucks n u got nuffin else betta 2 do so u thought that u would say that a band that has sold 100's of millions of albums worldwide that they suck! good luck with that! here a few lyrics that mite lead bon jovi to hav the album cover they hav "In my rearview mirror", "So i drive, watchin white lines passin by" OHHH yeah and mayb the fact that the album is called lost highway!!! dnt criticise sumthin that u dnt like, im not the greatest fan of country but im not gonna go into a forum and pay the shit out of garth brooks. Bon Jovi has been pumped through my veins since i was 3(im 17 now). So im gonna stay tru to them. rememba that the great bands go through stages and change. they were once boys havin fun now they hav matured and there music shows this. ritchies incredible solo's hav made way for unbelieveable lyrics which will touch anyone who listens to it. BON JOVI ROCKS!!!
    MikeyNightmare
    I am 16 years old, I LOVE Bon Jovi's ROCK music, but quite honestly I don't understand where the hell this album came from. I mean, take the new single You Want To Make a Memory, and put it next to Raise Your Hands, Social Disease, or King of the Mountain, and see how well they stack up next to eachother. The new album is nothin but pure pussy music, plain and simple. I mean I had SO MUCH respect for Bon Jovi, they were one of my favorite bands, but dude Have a Nice Day was just corny, and now their doin songs with Lean Rhymes and Big and Rich????? Wtf? I love 80's Rock the most, Def Leppard, Poison, Aerosmith, GNR, Ratt, Quiet Riot, etc., and when I listen to Bon Jovi, I expect something that ROCKS, but this Lost Highway album has made me loose all respect I had for that band. To me it seems their just gonna fade away instead of burn out.
    Mark2310
    RichieJovie wrote: Nice to see all the metallers slagging off Bon Jovi. They don't get it do they? They aren't a metal band they are a pop rock band with country leanings, so... why do they even care? Very insecure these shred bedroom hero's
    excellent point,but Bon Jovi along with the likes of Aerosmith,another great band,is a rock n roll band foremost and they have covered almost every sub-genre/style under rock n roll ranging from hard rock,pop-rock,blues rock,acoustic rock,modern rock to even country-rock now.
    Mark2310
    MikeyNightmare wrote: I am 16 years old, I LOVE Bon Jovi's ROCK music, but quite honestly I don't understand where the hell this album came from. I mean, take the new single You Want To Make a Memory, and put it next to Raise Your Hands, Social Disease, or King of the Mountain, and see how well they stack up next to eachother. The new album is nothin but pure pussy music, plain and simple. I mean I had SO MUCH respect for Bon Jovi, they were one of my favorite bands, but dude Have a Nice Day was just corny, and now their doin songs with Lean Rhymes and Big and Rich????? Wtf? I love 80's Rock the most, Def Leppard, Poison, Aerosmith, GNR, Ratt, Quiet Riot, etc., and when I listen to Bon Jovi, I expect something that ROCKS, but this Lost Highway album has made me loose all respect I had for that band. To me it seems their just gonna fade away instead of burn out.
    One album made you lose respect for the artist,and you've even made an assumption of your own regarding their future..hmm man,aren't you a touchy fellow
    Ben^
    MikeyNightmare: I am 16 years old, I LOVE Bon Jovi's ROCK music, but quite honestly I don't understand where the hell this album came from. I mean, take the new single You Want To Make a Memory, and put it next to Raise Your Hands, Social Disease, or King of the Mountain, and see how well they stack up next to eachother. The new album is nothin but pure pussy music, plain and simple. I mean I had SO MUCH respect for Bon Jovi, they were one of my favorite bands, but dude Have a Nice Day was just corny, and now their doin songs with Lean Rhymes and Big and Rich????? Wtf? I love 80's Rock the most, Def Leppard, Poison, Aerosmith, GNR, Ratt, Quiet Riot, etc., and when I listen to Bon Jovi, I expect something that ROCKS, but this Lost Highway album has made me loose all respect I had for that band. To me it seems their just gonna fade away instead of burn out.
    Don't worry, when you grow up you'll understand what good music is all about. Peace everybody.
    hengler
    rocknroller1010 wrote: Bon Jovi sold 100,000,000 albums before Led Zepplin and they came out about ten years later.
    Yeah, record sales are always a good indicator of talent iirc. Kelly Clarkson \m/ (Note: I'm not a fan of Bon Jovi but I respect them. The Led Zep sales comparison is just silly and pointless.)
    Tokyo Road
    As if any of our comments would ever affect the way Jovi create great music, and it is creative music, not the same album time after time like some bands do, who just keep making the same sort tunes that the record company tells them to write. Ah, the joys of being creative and having their own management, long live the might BON JOVI! See you in London guys on sunday!
    rocknroller1010
    Bon Jovi sold 100,000,000 albums before Led Zepplin and they came out about ten years later. Guys who don't like Bon Jovi are just cock sucking posers who want the real metal crowd to think their cool. Real metalheads like to get down and cozy with a little Bon Jovi once in a while.
    That-Funny-Guy
    cool well... ...i really like bon jovi... ... ...but i hate country with a passion uplifted from the souls of all those that are evil... ...i'm torn
    inlovewithmusic
    RockhavenGuitar wrote: breakingglass27 wrote: And ugh, Bon Jovi sucks the big one. Always. When you have a band that has been around for almost 30 yrs, then let us know and we'll value your opinion on who sucks and who doesn't suck. Geeze, discuss the album and not your general views of the band. As for Lost Highway, it isn't like their previous albums, which would be considered rock, but more mellow and I think it puts a lot of emphasis on the lyrics.
    well spoken dude ....i was just pissed looking at the comments some losers wrote ....
    Elypson
    I'll admit, When i heard the album was in a more country direction i nearly died a little inside, XD. All kidding aside though, there has only been on Country artist that i have admired and that is Garth Brooks, purely for his amazing stage pressence. I think Bon Jovi have pulled of the country style very well. I love the band and I'm a member of the younger side of their Fanbase. I suppose i am being biassed, I like everything Bon Jovi have released, but i genuinly do think this album is a great feel good record, putting aside the slower tracks.. Bon Jovi - Always ...
    millerdrr
    went to a bon jovi concert in Charlotte NC a few years ago. i expected it to be mostly nostalga types from the 80's. dead wrong, they had the place stacked to the rafters with people of all ages, way more than the NBA ever put in the stadium. not my favorite group, but they pawn almost everyone when it comes to staying power
    Michael056
    ever since ive heard bon jovi's music ive always liked it. especialy the more harder rock like homebound train (from the album new jersey) or you give love a bad name. also ive heard some softer stuff that i like too such as this aint a love song and thanks you for loving me. but still its all rock and when i heard that this album was more contry i was disappointed. i hoped itd be another album like slippery when wet or crush. i heard the song (you want to) make a memory and i didnt like it much but i cant base my opinion of the whole album on that song. i still want to get the album to hear the rest of it but i hope it isnt as country as im thinking it is.
    mike elf
    I loved this album, prefered it over 'have a nice day'. It's hardly a 100% country album by the way. Considering how long Bon Jovi have been around I'm amazed they're still coming up with great songs. 'We Got It Going On' is awesome
    Aziraphale
    zerodeck wrote: Jovi lost his rock roots? what rock roots? since when is he even considered an artist?
    Bon Jovi is a band, not a person. They debuted in '84, so there you have it, he's been considered an artist since '84. Dumbass. Richie Sambora is one of my most highly regarded guitarists of all time, not just because he can shred but because he can choose not to. He's all about serving the songs and he's also very versatile, which is pretty obvious since he's covered metal, grunge, blues, gypsy-jazz, pop and now country on this and the last record. Ace guy.
    Rockin Fendrman
    When it comes down to it, you have to realise that Bon Jovi have been around for 30years, unfortunately, but not unexpectedly, the music industry has changed since the band began and now requires them to make some changes. This new album really shows the versatility of the band to be able to adapt to what is needed of them. Being a guitarist and a fan of their older hits, I am a little dissapointed that Richie didnt let loose and go bonkers on a few guitar solo's like 'Next 100 Years' from the crush album. All in all I am not a huge fan off the new album but when I saw people having a go at the band it pissed me off, use your brain, they have been around for 30years and have had to adapt... I say WELL DONE. Rock On. P.S. Aziraphale.. well written and i agree with every word.
    BlueIc.e
    I have lost so much respect for Bon Jovi. They were awesome in the 80s but now they are making hick crap. I bet to top it off Bon is even banging his cousin write now. Sellout peice of...
    butcherer
    bon jovi set the standard for female-friendly schlock. Sambora's guitar work is competent and uninspired, but chicks dig it, anyway.
    LynchMobster
    yea, i like him when i was like 10 or 12, but not anymmore. Wanted DEad od Alive is still a great song. their last decent song was It's My Life. However Richie is a very good guitarist and i feel he could be doing something a lot better right now.
    Aziraphale
    butcherer wrote: bon jovi set the standard for female-friendly schlock. Sambora's guitar work is competent and uninspired, but chicks dig it, anyway.
    Listen to 'Love for Sale' or any acoustic version of Livin on a Prayer, or why not 'I'll sleep when I'm dead', and tell me that is unispired guitar work. Anyway, above anything, I think it's the collaboration with bubblegum-producer John Shanks that is the main reason why you hear so little of Richie in newer BJ. I've heard a few of the new songs live and they all sounded better than on the record, same thing goes with Have a Nice Day. The mix is so much better live, and the band is much more spontaneous.
    mimimimi
    Not there best work, but "Have a Nice Day" was a mint album. Who says you can't go home
    Susybe
    Bon Jovi no se qued en los ochenta... ellos han ido madurando y lo han demostrado a travs de sus discos. Tampoco quieren aparentar menor edad. Las personas que relamente apreciamos su msica conocemos lo que significan sus letras. No hablen sin saber...