Bon Jovi Madison Square Garden Review July 14th 2008

I’ve said before that it doesn’t seem possible for Bon Jovi to top themselves. They won’t leave the arena until they amaze the entire crowd. Throughout one of their concerts you’ll feel nostalgic, get lovey dovey, jump out of your seat, and have your jaw drop open from Richie’s guitar solos.

At MSG last night the set list differed greatly from the Central Park show. The concert was kicked off with “Lost Highway,” the title track from their latest album and a song that Jon Bon Jovi considers one of the best he’s ever written. The band also performed some songs I didn’t expect to hear like “Captain Crash,” and “On Any Other Day” from Lost Highway.

Any critic out there who likes to throw Bon Jovi to the wolves is clearly taking that stance to get a rise out of people. No, not everyone has to like Bon Jovi, but to say that they are untalented or pop fluff isn’t accurate.

An immediate rebuttal exists in a song off of their 1992 album Keep the Faith called “Dry County.” It’s a dramatic, intricate, and often times dark song. It’s definitely an outcast amongst the of Bon Jovi library due to it’s atmosphere and length (9:52). During this track the whole band gets to show off their chops. Here’s some of my shoddy camerawork of this performance. I used my Sony still camera, which I hate, but it’s all that I had with me. It’s also my first time uploading anything to You Tube! After I uploaded I discovered there’s about 30 of the same clips. It was a good first try though!

I knew I would enjoy seeing Bon Jovi at MSG way more than in Central Park. Not only was the sound electrifying but MSG is my favorite venue to see any event especially a concert. The place goes bananas and you can feel the rumbling and shrieks of the crowd. Toward the end of the show they blasted into a hard rocking performance of “Have a Nice Day,” and then a song I renamed “It’s Allright” a.k.a the New Jersey Tourism song “Who Says You Can’t Go Home.” The night ended with their classics: “Wanted Dead or Alive,” and a rousing rendition of “Livin’ on a Prayer.”

I won’t blow smoke up your ass, I don’t understand why Bon Jovi feels the need to cover Jeff Buckley’s “Hallelujah.” Nothing against Buckley but I’m not going to go along with the crowd who’s just getting into that song because Jon decided he wanted to start covering it. Bon Jovi has so many songs that they could be doing in place of a cover song. What about the stuff that brought them to the party? HEY Bon Jovi…Why do you guys forget that you used to play “hard rock?” Don’t tell me cause the girls don’t want to hear it because that’s a cop out. No matter how much I love the band I still can’t stand the fact that they won’t play songs that myself and many other fans desperately want to hear. Here’s just a few:

I Believe, She Don’t Know Me, Roulette, Breakout, 99 In the shade, In and out of love, King of the Mountain, Only Lonely, Tokyo Road, Something for the Pain, Hey God. I’m sure they’ve done some of these songs throughout the last few years somewhere in the world but I didn’t get to see them.

The All American Rejects opened the show. I’ve always been a fan of AAR and they performed at MSG with ease. They were appreciative of the chance to open for some of their idols and they were excited to be playing MSG for the first time. Along with their hits like “Swing, Swing,” “Dirty little Secret,” and “It Ends Tonight,” they premiered a new song “Mona Lisa,” which sounds like it will be all over the place once the album gets released in September. Appropriately they finished with “Move Along,” and they did just that as they made way for Bon Jovi.