Sound — 10
This is the album that turned Bon Jovi from 'another '80s band' into rock superstars. This record made people sit up and take Bon Jovi seriously as musicians and songwriters. The sound on this record is very much the sound of the time. Released in 1986, glam rock or hair metal or whatever you want to call it, was in its prime. The songs on 'Slippery When Wet' certainly fit the genre. From this record spawned three top ten hits in the form of 'You Give Love A Bad Name,' 'Livin On A Prayer' and 'Wanted Dead Or Alive.' All the songs have the distinctive heavy riffs and powerful vocals that have now become so common with every Bon Jovi album. The sound on this album is certainly reminiscent of '7800 Farenheit'. It appears to follow on where that left off. However musically, the album is much more mature than previos Bon Jovi albums. The guitar dominated anthem-like rock songs are still there with the heavy and catchy riffs, but the complexity of the songs shows that as a band they have matured into serious musicians. The guitar work by Richie Sambora is second to none. Although not considered as one of the greatest guitarists ever to grace us, I think the catchy riffs and solos worked into these songs puts him up there with the best.
Lyrics — 10
Untouched by irony and subtlety, the lyrics in every song work so well. 'Wanted Dead or Alive' is clearly a statement of 'this is where we're at right now. ' The lyrics in the song reflect the journey so far for the band, and how their lives have been changed since being thrown into the public eye." I've seen a million faces, and I've rocked them all." How very true. 'Livin On A Prayer' the anthem on the record that has become more famous than perhaps Bon Jovi themselves, is the story about a couple's undying hope and optimism. The lyrics are so innocent and yet breathe a sense of unity and faith, and for that reason have been adopted as an anthem for life for many teenagers and young adults nowadays. 'You Give Love A Bad Name' and 'Social Disease' take a tongue-in-cheek approach to love, where the lyrics are deep yet never cease to force a smile. Songs like 'Raise Your Hands' and 'Wild In The Streets' are the songs that instantly make you feel a sense of 'get up and jump.' The lyrics in 'Raise Your Hands' give off a sense of undivided unity and just seem to say 'go have fun!' Overall the lyrics have a lot of truth and innocence, which reflects perhaps the point the band were at during the recording of this album. It has a lot more energy than the previous records and for use of a better word, is more fun! The lyrics, while being intelligent and occasionally witty, don't really tackle personal issues or problems but instead create a light hearted approach to topics such as love and romance without being overly sentimental.
Overall Impression — 10
Still the best Bon Jovi album out there, and in my opinion the best album you will ever buy. Any serious Bon Jovi fan should already have this record, but if you don't I recommend you buy it. You haven't experienced Bon Jovi until you have played 'Slippery When Wet' over and over again at 120dB! It's the album that every eclectic collection has a copy of. My dad let me play his copy of 'Slippery When Wet' when I was four years old, and from the moment I heard the magical intro on 'Let It Rock' I've been hooked. I'm on my third copy of this album after playing the hell out of it and wearing the CD out. It really is that good. Every single song appears as if it has been worked on until perfected. No filler here at all, every song wrenches emotion right out of you. Whether its unity and a sense of belief from 'Livin On A Prayer', being able to relate to the lyrics in the hauntingly amazing 'Never Say Goodbye', or just that feel good factor you get from throwing yourself around the room to 'Raise Your Hands' or 'Wild In The Streets'. It's unlikely this album will change your life, but it will certainly rock it.