I have to give credit where credit is due! For me I gotta suck it up and say that when Bon Jovi dropped New Jersey on our senses in the fall of 1988 we were all drinking what Jon was selling! What was he selling Deke you say? Well simple he was fronting one of the biggest bands In the world. I bought into Jon’s rock plan from about 1984 – 1992! After Keep The Faith the guy and his band of hired men just flat out sucked and to that point I could do about 5 or 6 Jovi albums of 3/4’s Fillers but I cannot even get into tracking these albums down to give them a spin! Like seriously when he did that fucking goofy Hee Haw (country) record Left Feels Right? Hey if you love those albums I respect that I really do but Geez people the last great track you had been Dry County from Keep The Faith and then you punt the great Alec John Such from the band…ok I’m getting off topic but yeah friends New Jersey is a great rock record even today. It was produced by the great Bruce Fairbairn(RIP) and Bob Rock…….
Richie Sambora(gone) Alec John Such(canned) David Bryan (puppet) Tico Torres(no say guy) and Jon Bon Jovi(no comment) recorded and wrote some real good tunes here…..
Where’s Tokyo Road again?
LAY YOUR HANDS ON ME-the intro to this song is pretty damn cool i must say it ebbs and flows into all kinds of rock territory snippets of chants of “Hey” pop out sonically and then hope about you throw down some chill with what sounds like a hammond b3 with Jon telling us to Lay..yada yada and then crank up the sonics the song rocks out of the gate and all is well here at Jovi HQ 1988! Sambora plays some big riffs and the drums and bass groove along real good. Granted Jovi knows the deal here but he cranks the attention of my 21-year-old brain at the time and opens the Jersey album with a real good track! Bravo Jovi i say!
BAD MEDICINE-heres some keys..and boom Richie Rich plays big Arena Rock power chords and wowzers did this song hook me back than. Jonny and company nail the chorus at the beginning of the track and I’m shooting up with some Bad Medicine myself! The song rolls with catchy verse,catchy chorus and insert muscle guitar solo for good measure and viola you have a mega hit that myself,Tbone and many million others are hooked!
BORN TO BE MY BABY- the hooks keep coming ….the band fires off out of the starters gate and throw down some Na,na,na,na,na,na! This is a good song and give it up for everyone’s favourite salaried lead guitarist R Sambora! You can see now 27 years later and even back in good Ol 1988 how big of a clog Sambora was in this band. I always dug the live version of this tune when at the end Jovi would nail down some harmonica….instant street cred! Check out the live vid!
LIVING IN SIN- you knew just knew it was coming yepper doodle folks the ballad. It’s so so in my books I mean it’s better than that God awful sap sellout song Always that came years later. You know it’s just your typical proto type balladeer but the drums push it a bit so it doesn’t fully land in dulls ville! Interesting rock fact that when myself and Tbone caught the Jersey Syndicate World Tour of 1989 Living In Sin was the current single and they did not play it that night in Winnipeg! Wouldn’t have mattered if they had I would have went for a piss during it!
BLOOD ON BLOOD- this I guess you could say In the Jovi catalogue would be the were all for one and one for all song! The song builds it’s the kinda tune Springsteen would do if he was doing rock n roll steroids! It’s a good closer for side one and I also recall when they played this live you know they did the high fives and putting each other’s hands on each other like we’re brothers! Yeah I bought into the program and then I read a few months later that all the dudes are just hired hands! The word BRUTAL comes to mind!
HOMEBOUND TRAIN- this song is awesome. Loud distorted guitar,distorted harmonica and real fast tune! No slouching and man this song just cooks and smokes! Tico mashes his drums and paces this track and bravo! What a way to kickstart side 2! Don’t believe me ? Crank the vid!
WILD IS THE WIND- I really like this tune it’s a well written mid tempo track that features Sambora jacked up vocally next to JON in the mix! Real good chorus and yeah man if I was the tin man I guess you could say I have a heart! Haha! This is how a kindish power ballad should be done. Why they never pushed this out as a single who knows but pretty cool never less! First power ballad vid posted here at Arena Rock! It’s official Jon Bon Jingles has taken over what’s officially left of my brain!
RIDE COWBOY RIDE- drop the needle and you can hear the cackling of the vinyl of Jon and Richies acoustics! It’s short tune like a buck and a half (1 minute 30 secs ) and boom guns are drawn into…..
STICK TO YOUR GUNS-big wall of Fairbairn sound starts this tune and it’s a good song,a slow groover of a track and Jon and company tell us all to Keep The Faith! Don’t give up and if you do take a shot of Bad Medicine!
I’LL BE THERE FOR YOU- Yep this song was huge in 1989 real huge all over Muchmusic and it padded Bon Jovi’s bank account forever! It’s a power muscled ballad and even though this tune really isn’t my thing it’s better than Living In Sin and others! Features actually some real neat axe work from Sambora! Of course Sambora carries this tune with the Boss vocally as well!
99 IN THE SHADE- gem man! End of the album Gem! This is real cool party time summer fun rock! Almost like a tune you would hear in the 50s but Jovi cooks it 80s style and it’s a romping good rocker! Real money is on the chorus of this track. I have to say man these guys were on a roll at this time which is very impressive considering they were following up Slippery When Wet!
LOVE FOR SALE- Richie and Funny Jonny get hammered on substances and roll tape with the acoustics with Tico on the snare and end the album with a feel good end of the album Gem! Love the lyrics…just simple good and goofy! Well done Captain Kidd/King Of Swing!
IN CONCLUSION- Yo! If you have been reading this site for a while you have probably been wondering where’s the Jovi album reviews? Hahahaha than again maybe not! New Jersey came out when I was 21 and they rocked this record pretty good! It’s filled with all good things 80s! Big production,catchy songs, big singles, big(gulp) ballads and it’s all here for the pickings! I give them credit they never did go down Cheese Wiz Avenue as much as others did (did I hear someone chirp Poison?) still I gotta hand it to these guys this is a great rock album……..just don’t get me started on after anything Jovi related after 1992!