I’m never quite sure how to react to tribute albums, especially when at first glance it’s a who’s who of hit and misses from 80's bands.
My first reason for picking up this album was because it was a Bon Jovi tribute and I’m a HUGE Jovi fan. The second reason was John Corobi was on it. I didn’t quite know what to expect, and kept putting off listening to the album, in fear it would ruin my love of Jovi songs forever.
So what did I think? Well, after hearing the first track — Fred Coury of Cinderella singing "Have A Nice Day" — I was pretty impressed. Especially considering I didn’t think the drummer of Cinderella could sing or sing so damn well. I hated Colby Veil’s "Welcome To Whereever You Are", which was sung so low, and so badly, I didn’t think anyone could possibly do worse. I was wrong. Alex Mitchell superceded that on "Runaway". Not only does he not have the right voice for it, but I am pretty sure even Jon Bon Jovi would have winced in horror. The song was truly trashed, and done in such a style that it’s not even describable.
As for Jizzy Pearl… I just wish he would not perform on anymore tribute albums. He seems to pop up on all the tribute albums that come my way. I’ve never been a big fan of his music, but this time I found him more than a little trying. It was like he was trying too hard, and not very successfully. I was however more than a little impressed with Stevie Rachelle and his version of "In And Out Of Love". I have never been a Tuff fan, but he took the song, made it his own, while keeping it in the same style of Jovi.
So did it get better again? I managed to listen to the rest of the album, and stay suitably impressed. But then my expectations, after listening to the second and third track, had dropped rapidly. I know that bands tend to try and keep to the same genre, while making the songs their own, but in selecting the artists, much thought should be taken into whether they can actually achieve this, or simply ruin a song. Having said this, I actually loved most of the other tracks.
Phil Lewis singing "Wanted Dead Or Alive" nailed it, in his own style. He has the right kind of voice to actually be able to carry it off. The same can be said for Marq Torien, and what can I say about John Corobi? Is there nothing this man can not do? As per usual he nailed it. Kudos also have to go to Kelly Hanson from Hurricane, who sung one of my all-time favourite Jovi songs "You Give Love A Bad Name". I hated it at first but within 2 minutes into the song, had changed my mind.
Fans of 80’s band will love this just because some big names from big 80 bands are on this. They get the chance to listen to their favourite singers all over again. Bon Jovi fans are either going to love or hate the new take on the songs, but I see it this way. It’s a way for musicians to give Kudos to others they admire and respect.
Worth getting? Overall, I think it was. It’s the same songs, with musicians giving them their own spin, while most of them keeping to the same style that makes Bon Jovi well… Bon Jovi.
I give it 3/5
Record Label: Redline
1. Have a Nice Day – Fred Coury
2. Welcome to Wherever You Are – Colby Veil
3. Runaway – Alex Mitchell
4. In and out of Love – Stevie Rachelle
5. You Give Love a Bad Name – Kelly Hanson
6. Livin' on a Prayer – Marq Torien
7. Wanted Dead or Alive – Philip Lewis
8. Lay Your Hands on Me – Jani Lane
9. Bad Medicine – Jizzy Pearl
10. Born to Be My Baby – John Corabi
11. Living in Sin – Spike
12. I'll Be There for You – Chaz
13. Blaze of Glory – Kory Clarke