Bon Jovi Lost Highway Island/Def Jam
· Produced By: John Shanks & Dann Huff

· Running Time:

· Release Date: Out Now

· Released: WORLD

· Musical Style: Melodic Rock / Country Rock

· Links: Bon Jovi
Songs: 70%
Sound: 90%
Whether you like it or not – this is the stuff of genius. What other band of the 80s continues to reinvent itself – often flying in the face of fan wishes – takes risks and still manages to sell 250k units in it's first week of sales?
These days everything in the world of Bon Jovi is calculated to the last note. It is this perceived loss of spontaneity that gives their critics the ammunition to lob at them, but credit where credit is due. They survive, they are still out there performing and they are still selling out venues and releasing charting records.
Bon Jovi only just won back a number of fans with the popular and critically acclaimed Have A Nice Day album. Their decision to write and record a new album in Nashville upset many, but what would the result be?
Not as bad as some have made out, but also not everything it could have been nor should have been in the wake of Have A Nice Day.
Whereas Have A Nice Day was a very popular release, I think this one is a definite hot and cold release. You are either going to love it or hate it. And I'm guessing there will be as many in one camp as there will be in the other.
Going back to the issue of how calculated this band is – the track Who Said You Can't Go Home was originally a duet with Keith Urban. Jon Bon Jovi thought he knew better and switched to a female lead from an up and coming Nashville act. He was right and the guys scored a Grammy for the track and opened the door for a potential new audience.
That sniff of a new market was enough for JBJ to pack his bags, fill his car with gas, and pick Richie up on the way to Nashville.
The plan was that the new record would be written in Nashville with an eye for that market, while carrying enough of the classic Bon Jovi sound along for the ride, hoping to still hold the interest of regular fans.
Another calculated and cleaver move was to bring producer of Have A Nice Day John Shanks along and team him with the man on the moment in Nashville – Keith Urban's right hand man Dann Huff (no stranger to this website in his own right).
Lost Highway really is an example of a perfectly executed plan coming together. You get the more modern influences of the last album combining with the country rock style of Keith Urban.
The Nashville influence is entwined into every note of this new record, but in another twist of genius, the album can be as much or as little country as you want it to be.
If you choose to block out this influence, Lost Highway can simply be seen as a more acoustic driven record such as These Days and will appeal to fans of that release. There's also a little Crush in the mix and basically it is just another example of modern day Jovi.
If you want to concentrate on the slide guitar, the string arrangements or the noticeable twang in Jon's voice, then this record can offer something new and fresh for fans.
At the same time, if you can't block out those influences, then this record will simply annoy the shit out of you.
It's unusual to hear the southern twang of banjo's and strings opening a Bon Jovi album, but the happy go lucky buzz of the title track is hard to ignore.
Borrowing from the modern rock styling of Have A Nice Day is the rockers Summertime, Everybody's Broken and the more sentimental themed Any Other Day, which is the pick of the whole album for me.
Trying just a little too hard in the 'down home hokey rocker' category is We Got It Going On, a paring with Nashville's hip duo Big & Rich.
The remainder of the album is unfortunately filled with acoustic driven fluff pieces, which I guess puts me right in the fence as far as the album goes.
There are some sweet songs, but they all have this overtly sweet and nice feel that just doesn't match my desire for Bon Jovi music – they are already the kings of schmaltzy ballads.
The Bottom Line
Some of the album really works and some of the album is just plain dull. I think those not afraid of something more laid back and experimental will enjoy this album a lot – after all, it is really well written and there isn't a single note out of place. Those parts just doesn't appeal to me.
These Days for the new millennium or Have A Nice Day for the country set. Take it either way, but you can't argue that the album sounds a million bucks and has once again found this 'never say die' band in the chart topping zone.
Previously Reviewed
· Crush
· One Wild Night
· Bounce
· This Left Feels Right
· Have A Nice Day
· Lost Highway

Line Up:
· Jon Bon Jovi: Vocals
· Richie Sambora: Guitar
· David Bryan: Keyboards
· Tico Torres: Drums
· Hugh McDonald: Bass

Essential For Fans Of:
· Bon Jovi - These Days
· Bon Jovi - Who Said You Can't Go Home
Track Listing
· Lost Highway *
· Summertime *
· Make a Memory
· Whole Lot Of Leaving
· We Got It Going On
· Any Other Day *
· Seat Next To You
· Everybody's Broken
· Stranger
· The Last Night
· One Step Closer
· I Love This Town

--*Best Tracks

23/02/10: Brad -
Rating: 82
I was originally a huge fan of the 1980s Bon Jovi sound, so much that when the musically brilliant "Keep The Faith" came out in 1992, I was a bit disappointed that it didn't rock enough even though I played and knew that album inside and out. After that, Bon Jovi kind of dropped off the radar for me until their true comeback single "It's My Life" in 2000. That album, "Crush", and its follow up, "Bounce", certainly had their moments, but to me some of the tracks on each were lacking something. Then came 2005's "Have A Nice Day", which to me was Bon Jovi's most satisfying release since at least "Keep The Faith" and maybe even "New Jersey". Unlike many others, I completely embraced the sound and overall direction of that album. I mention this to point out that I am not stuck only on Bon Jovi's '80s sound.

All that being said, this "Lost Highway" release was a slight step back for me after "Have A Nice Day". For sure, it is interesting to hear Bon Jovi mix more country elements into their music than ever before. As usual, the playing and musicianship on the album are top notch. Songs like the opening title track, the very catchy "Summertime", and the anthemic "Any Other Day" are all excellent tracks on the album. However, the overall pace drags a bit in other spots. While I appreciate the sentiment of "(You Want To) Make a Memory", it is just too dreary of a pace for a first single not to mention Bon Jovi sappy sentiment that we have heard so many times before. Same holds true for "Till We Ain't Strangers Anymore" with Leann Rhymes. Good track but not quite what I want to hear from Bon Jovi.

For sure, I like this album, but I don't LOVE it like other releases from recent years from some of my favorite all-time artists. I have read the mixed reviews on their latest album "The Circle" but have yet to get ro hear that album myself. Hopefully I will see it as a step up from this album after a step back from the awesome "Have a Nice Day".

07/02/09: Dave -
Rating: 98
This was probably my favorite record of the year, and in my opinion, Bon Jovi's best since These Days and maybe better. The songwriting is at it's best in years and I think they added a new sound without losing their own sound.
Lost Highway might be my favorite Bon Jovi song of all time and Everybody's Broken, Whole lot of Leavin' and Any Other Day all are instant classics.
When I heard they were putting out a country sounding album I was very concerend as I do not like country music at all. But Bon Jovi put out it's best record in 10+ years and I'm looking forward to what they do next.

30/11/07: Dan Colwell -
Rating: 0
Boring, Bon Jovi has sold out!!!!

05/11/07: catchy -
Rating: 90
I like this as much as previous Bon Jovi material. OK, its a different take on their sound but its still great music. Took a few listens to work its way in; its not been far from the CD player for a few weeks now. Love it...

29/08/07: LemonyHell -
Rating: 50
Boring album with only 2 or 3 good songs that are enjoyable.

Bon Jovi isnt what it used to be, too bad.

14/08/07: Raffaele -
Rating: 75
I think this record it's a mix beetween "These days" and something of the last "Have a Nice day". I fear that was only a country album. I think that the best Bon Jovi's music is that of 80's but I like that the band try to change your sound without change it's attitude of simple rock band.

04/08/07: Harv -
Rating: 55
Played it once and gave it away. Is it horrible? No. Is it fantastic? No. It's just sort of there. The lead single is just boring. My wife and I heard it on American Idol and when everyone stood up at the end, we both laughed. There had to be someone holding up a sign to get them to stand up. Whether it is Bon Jovi in the 80s, 90s, or 2000s, this album just is not that great. It wouldn't be great if it was some other band either.

01/08/07: DJBOB69 -
Rating: 25
Wow what a total waste of time and money. Bon Jovi has proven that once again they can make a record that does not add anything to the legecy. Come on please return to a rock ablum and leave the country to the country artist. Come make a real rock album you guys have fail that since Keep the Faith.

01/08/07: Carmine -
Rating: 20
I don't really like this. I haven't really liked anything Bon Jovi did after New Jersey. Oh well, I guess bands change. I'm not gonna bitch about how bad this is though...I'll just go back and listen to Slippery and Jersey. If anyone disagrees with me, more power to them. People are entitled to their opinion. But as for me, I'm sticking to the old stuff.

31/07/07: amer -
Rating: 70
Well, mixed opinions as I expected.We all know Bon Jovi is great band, but they ain't the band from 80's anymore.And everybody actually liked Bon Jovi's 80's.They helluva rocked the nation back then...and now?Yes they still can, but they calm down. Jon's voice stopped screaming(although he can scream, but it seems to me he doesn't want to?)and the lack of power in his voice makes songs weaker.Fans admitt it,choruses back in 80's were all sung with power not cheeesy like nowadays.Lyrics are today a miles better then before,production is better too...just power is missing.Have a nice day was fantastic album..but yet again I had that feeling,it could still be more 80's influence on that, but the band simply didn't let that happen. I mean come on guys, EVERYBODY writes in the reviews that WE MISS 80'S,and I'm pretty sure that Bon Jovi read these reviews,so why the hell don't you listen to your FANS?Ok maybe it's not all about the fans but discovering your soul through (new) style, but at least give us just one 80's record(like ex. This left feels right).You know like bonus or something...
This album is solid..only few songs kick butt like 'Any Other Day','I love this town', the rest is poor.Nice to hear Richie's solos again.Keep the faith guys

31/07/07: Dylan -
Rating: 90
I love this record!
They've always had a country side, it's nothing new or surprising.
I really feel like their hearts are in this record and there are some great songs. Great Job! I'd buy more albums like this.

31/07/07: bobby -
Rating: 90
Do you like the bon jovi of the 80's?Well go and listen to slippery and jersey.
I'll keep repeating for people that are stuck in that era,its 2007 and this band is still relevant today unlike warrant,poison, and heaps of other posers that have dissapeared by the way side
The disc has something for everybody,this band just keeps getting better and better.I'll review it one by one
The song Lost Highway is an absolute cracker of an opener
Summertime,the closest song to 99 in the shade,a feel good rocker.
Make A Memory,Desmond child all over this one..grows on you
Whole Lotta Leaving,Country influence,with a great chorus
We Got It Going On,Not my favourite..
Any Other Day,What a song,easily the best jovi song on this cd,this is up there with its my life,i am and the distance..
Seat Next To You,Ok nothing special
Everybody's Broken,Nice ballad,great lyrics
Till We Ain't Strangers,If they release this it will go to NO 1 on the billboard charts.Fantastic ballad.
The Last Night,Another favourite,prob the 2nd best song on the cd,sounds like something from these days.
One Step Closer,Awesome melody,you know your listening to something special when you hear this one.
I love this town,K.Urban meets bon jovi,very country but a catchy chorus.
Lonely...This was the bonus track,sounds like springsteen,this is a great song,this should be on the cd full stop.
So as a Bon Jovi fan ,they could do an opera cd and id buy it,because i know im going to get a cd with a great production and a songwriting team that kicks everybody's ass.
To all the knockers out there,you can keep comparing your artists that want to sound like Bon Jovi from the 80's but you cant beat the original,This cd is BRILLIANT...If you liked THESE DAYS buy it.

31/07/07: marcelo -
Rating: 50
i had high expectations before listening to this record because of the people involved in this new cd but i feel very dissapointed. some of the songs still have what i expect from this rock band but there are too many forgettable songs. the worst thing about listening LOST HIGHWAY is that any of the tracks could be kept in my mind as it happened with the other bon jovi albums. this is just something done for the money. it won't become popular among the BON JOVI fans. sorry guys try again

31/07/07: Tom -
Rating: 30
Okay I admit it: I am a fan of the 80s Bon Jovi. However, Have A Nice Day was a great album compared to Lost Highway. Most likely only little of this album would get the same amount of airplay if it was from an unknown band. There are much better AOR productions these days which don´t get any attention at all whereas "Lost Highway" goes off with a buzz just because the guys are Bon Jovi. That´s kinda sad...

31/07/07: Jeff Picchioni -
Rating: 87
This is a CD that gets better the more you play it. The production is all there. The songs are good, but there's not many awesome ones, except for one, We Got it Going On is a real rocker that sounds more like Bounce, or Have a Nice Day or Bad Medicine. I 'd add We got it Going on, The Last Night, and I love this town to Andy's Best Tracks list. I think anyone who has been buying Bon Jovi's last 3 albums(minus This Left Feels Right) will enjoy this album. It's a solid album, and I don't think we've heard the best song released yet from it.

31/07/07: pacopuma -
Rating: 90
Fantastic CD, it's incredible how this band can sound in a different way but with the same quality. Lost Highway is a perfect american rock CD. It's clear that's not AOR or hard rock but nowadays this kind of music es nearly dead and the melodic rock have to go on...

30/07/07: Edu -
Rating: 90
Very good record,only didn't like seat next to you and I love this town... the rest of the album is just fantastic!! I do not understand why Andrew didn't comment the track The Last Night, for me one of the best songs! Great job BJ!

30/07/07: Charlie Smith -
Rating: 40
I rated this disc not on the merits of the disc but on the VH1/CMT specials, which are much better versions of some of the songs on the disc. The reason it's only at 40% is because even though I would rate the VH1/CMT specials at a solid 90%, I can't stop thinking about the songs on the disc.
It sounds like JBJ's singing was just phoned in, and one can only wonder if Richie even played on the CD. Don't get me wrong I don't mind when a band changes it sound a little bit to try to update themselves but why go over the edge. After the killer Have A Nice Day disc one would of hoped that they would unload a killer disc but nope this isn't it.
Do yourself a favor find the songs from the VH1/CMT specials and spin them, they far out class anything from the CD itself. If you can't find them and you still don't own the Have A Nice Day disc go out and buy that one instead. Let's hope that they don't do a Rap CD next, we want Bon Jovi back.

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