BON JOVI - Forever (2024)

"Forever" is Bon Jovi's 16th studio album and the follow-up to 2020, which was, as you may imagine (or remember), released in 2020. The new album features 12 songs for almost 50 minutes of music. 

I thought the biggest Bon Jovi problem in the last years was the vocal condition of Jon, but thinking about it, maybe it's not even the main reason why I don't like their albums anymore. 

After listening to "Forever" a few times, I decided to put something old (One Wild Night Live) to have a little more perspective. The main difference I found is that there is almost no space at all for instrumental parts, riffs, or long solos... nothing, just vocals by Jon and with a fraction of his usual power. I was listening to "Something to Believe in"... in a so-called pop album by disappointed fans... ("These days"). Well, the second part of the song has a very interesting break by the rhythm section, followed by amazing vocals and a solo by Richie Sambora. That's the difference to me. The songs of the last ten years or so have very little musical interest, and, without Richie, they are all Jon's vocals like it's a solo album. 

Speaking of old songs, in "Forever" we have one with the talkbox, the second single "Living Proof". Probably It would have been a hit, recorded in the 80s or 90s, with "different" vocals or "The People's House", reminding me of Keep the Faith during the verses but the chorus ruins everything.

"Waves" has a good chorus, with Jon singing closer to his standards, same as the verses of Walls of Jericho, and "Living in Paradise" but the choruses are too pop for my taste. "I Wrote You a Song" and the final "Hollow Man" are very good ballads, far from the old standards but very simple in terms of production/arrangement and overall sincere. I would like to hear more songs like this one from Jon rather than pop and overproduced songs where Jon's voice doesn't sound very natural in some parts, and the songs sound too heavy in terms of arrangement (the first single "Legendary" is a good example).

Overall I preferred its predecessor "2020", a little more inspired and rock, in terms of production, but to go back to an album I really like by the band I think we have to go back to Have a Nice Day, released 19 years ago.

Rating 58/100
Top tracks: Living Proof, Waves, Hollow Man.
Skip track: We Made It Look Easy.

01. Legendary
02. We Made It Look Easy
03. Living Proof
04. Waves
05. Seeds
06. Kiss The Bride
07. The People's House
08. Walls Of Jericho
09. I Wrote You A Song
10. Living In Paradise
11. My First Guitar
12. Hollow Man
Giovanni Gagliano

Passionate about music I wrote my first article for "Given To Rock" in 2012, reaching now 30K global followers. I am also a musician, gigging around London.

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