Bon Jovi This Left Feels Right Island Records
· Produced By: Pat Leonard

· Running Time: 51.27

· Release Date: Out Now

· Released: WORLD

· Musical Style: Acoustic Rock

· Links: Bon Jovi
Songs: 50%
Sound: 90%
Bon Jovi's new re-recorded Best Of release is more a question of "what if?" rather than what is. What could have been, rather than what is on offer.
I'm quite open to hearing new interpretations of past hits, but it's a huge double edged sword. How do you pay homage to tracks already made classic and adopted by many as personal anthems, yet do something different enough with them to warrant the exercise taking place.
I was quite interested in hearing this, but as has been the case with the last 3 Jovi releases – the promise held isn't necessarily repaid.
Don't get me wrong – this is very slick. It's very well produced and flawlessly executed. But it just don't have any wow factor.
I am a fan of Bon Jovi's past acoustic renditions of their mega-hits. The guys have done it numerous ways live over the years, with the occasional bootlegs and live B-Sides well worth collecting.
In this case it seems the band have been most concerned with updating their sound and modernizing the delivery of these classics. While listening to the songs, I the majority of my thoughts drifted towards wondering what could have been, or wishing particular songs were different to what they are.
This seems to be a little too cleaver for the sake of being cleaver in places, then rather bland in others.
It must be said that the production here – courtesy of the super smooth and high-tech friendly Pat Leonard – is first rate. The layers of instrumentation are lush and the band couldn't have picked a better producer to help them modernize the songs with various effects, tricks and modern pop traits. But how will the fans feel about this?
Track By Track:
Wanted Dead Or Alive is probably the most dramatic transformations and opens the album. It's an interesting version, but in my mind falls short of what could have been – much like several other tracks here. I don't like the fact that the verse features Jon's vocals filtered through various effects. I do like the super heavy guitar/drum rhythm that kicks in occasionally and would like to have heard more of that. I'm also left to ponder where Richie Sambora is vocally. This became and continues to be a huge song for him and Jon to duet on live. Why not do the same here?
Livin' On A Prayer is one of the band's best ever songs and a personal favourite. Here it has been stripped right back to a slow tempo ballad with an atmospheric chorus that suits the song. It's not a long way from what has been done by the band live. That's the good news. The bad news is once again – where's Richie? The song is a duet with a female lead vocalist. Why not again take the opportunity to feature the very underrated vocal talents of Mr. Sambora? Oh well, minor point, the song actually works really well. It would be hard to kill a classic such as this!
The new Bad Medicine is sultry mid-western ballad with a slightly country-ish tinge to it. The bad news is that the verse simply has no vitality. It's as flat as a roadkill rat.
It's My Life features some nice instrumentation – a beautiful harp to open, some haunting piano throughout and some lush synth/string effects over a very laid back vocal. This track works a treat and is very enjoyable.
Lay Your Hands On Me is another old personal favourite. Here it features a rich acoustic layer and a strong, but restrained softly sung lead vocal giving the track an almost Gospel feel. Maybe it would have been cool to take it all the way and develop that angle further?
You Give Love A Bad Name has been turned into a swampy blues ballad, with at times, a horrible twang in the lead vocal. Not sure what JBJ was trying, but I don't like his delivery on this track. The track is again stripped of much of its natural energy.
Bed Of Roses was and remains a ballad. It's had strings and a more pronounced piano part added to it and has been jazzed up with some slick production techniques, but otherwise remains pretty much the same.
Everyday is been turned into a modern ballad of sorts. It picks up the tempo mid-song into an acoustic pop track with a slight country feel.
Born To Be My Baby is another mid-tempo tune that is a few notches slower than the original and features several layers of guitars – acoustic and bass and is another track that seems to have had the life sucked out of it. Another intervention from Richie Sambora could have given it a lift and returned some intensity.
Keep The Faith was a watershed song for the band. It signaled their re-invention back at the early 90's. Not so here. This time we have a soft, slow acoustic ballad that has a style that has been done 2 or 3 times already on this album.
I'll Be There For You is another original ballad that is featured. This one has had a bit of work done to it – now more in a Beatlesque style with a couple of extra layers of effects and a soft, raspy vocal from JBJ.
Always closes out the album. The band has chosen one of the better tracks to ensure the album ends on a high note. This track remains a ballad, but has been made even more intense and modernized by some good production effects and a new layer of keyboard dramatics. A good sentimental ballad that has been intensified and made that little bit darker.
The Bottom Line
Some Bon Jovi fans will accept this and continue their love affair with the band. They might also e-mail me some abuse. But I dare say many others will agree with this review. I think this is a stop-gap release that could either have been a lot more interesting, or a lot more true to the band's roots. Instead it's something in between.
The main problem is the pace. Bon Jovi again prove they are getting too old to rock with a 12 track collection of ballads. Some tracks work extremely well, but as an overall album, it's just a little too laid back.
The bottom line is that I must question how much I am going to listen to this. I'm still playing New Jersey, Slippery When Wet and Keep The Faith today – many years after their release. I can't see myself playing this next month, let alone years from now.
Recent Discography / Previously Reviewed
· Crush
· One Wild Night
· Bounce
· This Left Feels Right

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

Essential for fans of:
· Bon Jovi
Track Listing
· Wanted Dead Or Alive*
· Livin' On A Prayer*
· Bad Medicine
· It's My Life*
· Lay Your Hands On Me
· You Give Love A Bad Name
· Bed Of Roses
· Everyday
· Born To Be My Baby
· Keep The Faith
· I'll Be There For You
· Always*
--*Best Tracks

19/07/06: jonluva -
Rating: 100
I of course gave this cd a 100!!! I love EVERYTHING that bon jovi has ever done! this was a vert gutsy record to make. they took some of their most well known songs and made them into something totally new! name some other artists that are ready, willing, and able to do that! the problem with some of you, is you listened to it expecting a typical bon jovi rock album... that was never the intent of this album. and for you strictly "slippery when wet" and "keep the faith"-ers... you should really open your minds and ears to some of their newest albums! this one is GREAT, so is THESE DAYS, CRUSH, BOUNCE, and HAVE A NICE DAY... new jersey is also a great older one!!!! I love this cd, if you are reading these reviews for the first time don't automatically write it off, it is great the more you listen to it. just have the attitude that these are all NEW songs, not greatest hits!

23/05/05: Steve -
Rating: 2
One of the worst cd's I have ever waysted a pay check on! I must say Jon's glory days are over... If you think this cd is bad try watching the DVD version of this...what a laugh I got Jon starts dancing like J Lo on here. What a Lame Ass this guy is? Please don't waste your hard earned money on this guy he's only trying to rip of his fans with this junk. STAY AWAY!

23/03/05: Fred -
Rating: 90
I like this one very much ,I can't explain Why ? like usually I 'm much interested by heavy songs and guitar solos ,and here you will find (90°/o) acoustic works , but the result is really nice..different guitars( Martin ,gibson J200 ,dobro etc) others arrangements ,this cd is like a trip ,very poetic ,sometimes a bit trippy (yes it is) ,if you are in a certain mood (dreamy) this is the right cd ;one of my favorites with Slippery, Keep the faith and these Days!

24/11/04: sean Leonard -
Rating: 100
My Father is Patrick Leonard, who arranged and produced this album. what you negative feedbackers dont understand is that jon and the band, after i discussed this with them about a year ago, said that what there were doing was not trying to modernize and destroy the songs, but to shed a new, happier light on Bon Jovi. they are tremendous people, and should be appreciated no matter what they choose to do.

03/11/04: M E -
Rating: 95
Way better than a greatest hits record, if u are a fan you have the songs already, this is really a nice move by the guys great songs played laidback with a interesting twist, the best band in the world still break new boundaries............

04/10/04: a fans here -
Rating: 70
the album is not what you want
is what they want

if they are just put the live acoustic version at the album
i don't need to get it
it's meaningless

just want to rock?
go away

want to relex?
go away too

need some vitality sound?
you're right

Rating: 19

27/05/04: Chewsmoka -
Rating: 0
Time for these boys to quit for a few years and go back to the drawing board. Since 2000 with Crush, things have gone nowhere but down, and it was their fault. Jon must have gotten slapped in the face with a bag of hot nickels to release something like this.Not only does it further drive the nail in the coffin of their careers, but longtime fans like myself just wonder when they will release a box set or new greatest hits, and retire to a rndless touring joke. I'm sure this CD is good torture or a good gift for someone you hate. Now I hear Def Leppard is doing a covers album! I pray it's miles ahead of this.

03/04/04: Ramz -
Rating: 1
This is the 1st Cd i have ever taken back for a refund, I did not want it contaminating the rest of the discs in my collection, plus i didn't want anyone to profit from this bland boring dross.
I actually laughed out loud a couple of time at how bad it sounded.
I've heard pop idol contestants do better than this.

20/02/04: Lou -
Rating: 2
YYYYYYUUUUUUUKKK !!! Stick to the original versions Bon Jovi
fans , although i do like Bon Jovi's version of the old
Dr. Hook tune "Sylvia's Mother" . Other than that , crapola
new versions of Bon Jovi classics .

19/01/04: ADAM W. -
Rating: 1
This CD SUCKS!!! Plain and simple it is a waste of time and money. Trust me this is a complete "JUMP THE SHARK" CD for BON JOVI. After fighting back with two very good CD releases and some GREAT singles they put out this useless redo collection of their hit singles. These versions SUCK! The only reason I gave them a 1 rating is because they ARE BON JOVI. This CD will do for their career what that awful covers CD did for the DURAN DURAN comeback several years ago. They had finally fought back and put out a great CD in THANK YOU only to blow all the momentum they had gained with a covers CD including horrendous versions of PUBLIC ENEMY, COME ON!! Bon Jovi what were you thinking?!

03/12/03: Markus -
Rating: 4
Really a disappointment.

"It's my life" is good, but especially "Livin' on a prayer", oh my god, the female vocals suck big time (WHERE IS RS????) and "Bad medicine" became a joke.

Sorry, I was a fan since the early days, but this is not my cup of tea.

01/12/03: Dave -
Rating: 35
Terrible idea, terrible renditions of the songs except for 2 in my opinion. If it wasn't for that fact then I would have given it a 10% for wasting time and money for Universal!

01/12/03: Harv -
Rating: 0
This CD blows. My brother-in-law, who is one of the biggest BJ fans I know, laughed through the entire CD. There are some decent songs (Wanted, Prayer, Always) but as a whole, it's a big joke. Bad Medicine actually brought tears to my eyes because I was laughing so hard. Is this all the BJ has to offer these days? The last four albums, we've been offered the disappointing Crush CD, the "who cares" live CD (basically I had all the songs on cd singles), a decent comeback with Bounce, and now another song of previously done songs. Since 1994, we've had 3 studio albums and three compilation albums. Who do they think they are Aerosmith or Kiss? Guys, I'll say the same thing to you that I said about Def Leppard, take some Viagra and find your balls again.

29/11/03: Charlie -
Rating: 0
For those who think these reviews are harsh and that we did not understand what we were buying, my answer is WRONG I am a member of the Bon Jovi Fan Club and get e-mail updates from them. I know most guys would say through there wives but my wife doesn't use the internet for other than buying things so YES it is my membership. I knew what I was getting but I just didn't think it was this bad. I have several shows that feature them doing accoustic songs all of which are GREAT, why not release these versions or the ones from MTV Unplugged or from the Video Music awards that featured just Richie and Jon that was and still is the BEST version of Wanted EVER. I have seen them live from the 1st disc when they still played crappy little clubs all the way through their last tour. So I am not a lost in the wood fan who did not know what he was buying I just thought it would be a whole lot better.

19/11/03: Sunless Star -
Rating: 15
Accoustic album??
Where are the guitars?
Simple, bored, slow...
Why the songs aren´t like the perform on the bonus dvd?
A really sad album

18/11/03: Alan Leigh -
Rating: 3
The thing is I am 45 and been with BJ from the start. I have listened time and again and it is a fatal mistake is respect of trying to gain new fans.

This Right Is Wrong and for all the worst possible reasons. We know what excellent muscians the guys are and we have heard many acoustic versions of their classic anthems. They are a stadium band and as BJ once said once the record is passed over to their fans it becomes what they make it which is why BJ became as big as they did. The fans put then where they are like all bands they are nothing without a fan base. We sang the songs and created new twists to tried and tested anthems and when they were sung acoustically we made them our own.

This new record does not work. Maybe Its My Life but only because I suffer from chonic depression and anxiety and have taken an OD twice. This CD makes me want to go for a 3rd. Damn BJ for cashing in. Like a Live Album this sort of production is a cop out easy way of making maoney but as for them working live and getting an audience off their butts never in this world.

They shudda brought out an album like David Bowie did years ago called PinUps which was DB performimg greatest hits of the Stones etc. We all now what BJ can do to a classic when they add the BJ magic to it and re-create it in their own style so much so that it becomes a BJ anthem eg Shout. Enough said this is a real bummer BJ and it does not matter how many times I listen 2 it. My son is 13 he has seen BJ 13 times already, he hates it; likewise my daughter who is 16 has seen BJ 20 times as she has come with me across Europe. Me myself I have lost count and will still be their for the guys but for christ sake leave these versions in the Bar or Clubs they will bomb live

17/11/03: Nicodim -
Rating: 75
Can not agree to all these guys who covers BJ's album with the bunch of shit. As for me, generally I like it. Some of the old time mega-hits now sound totally different. Not BAD, but DIFFERENT! Not a same thing, as U must understand. The question is: what did they (BJ) want? The answer: they didn't want to sing that songs once again in the same way, but to change it totally. Actually I really like all that acoustic albums. It's just like these songs born again and live another life. But very often the musicians just sing they hits in the same, but acoustic way. If it so, I don't think it's necessary for them to record an album. In the albums of a such type I want to hear something REALLY NEW in the old songs. And my personal favourite through all these years of acoustic fever (in the world of music) - FIREHOUSE "Good Acoustics".
As for Bon Jovi, I can easily agree to the reviewer - I MISS OF RITCHIE SAMBORA! Actually I like his solo efforts MUCH better than Jon's ones. I like his vocal. He really good singer. And that's quite unforgiveable to the group - to pull his voice off!
And, finally, the songs itself. My strong favourites are: Wanted Dead Or Alive (uhh, how I like that heavy riff - I really want to hear yet another version, hard one!), It's My Life, Bed Of Roses, Born To Be My Baby, Keep The Faith & Always!

P.S. - And I hope we will never get another BOUNCE again. The weakest BJ album beyond doubt. Thank God, I save my money then decided to download it from the Net at first.

17/11/03: Bob Wisenor -
Rating: 4
I like it for what it is....
Great hits with a twist...
Its not a new album.
Its something new for the fans..
Its a pleasure to see these BON JOVI songs hold up under a new producer.
Bottom line: These songs hold up...
Its a real blast to hear them produced under a new producer...
Open your minds people...

Its not a "NEW" album.

Just something new and fun...

It rocks!!!!

I played on the same bill as Bon Jovi in 2001 and 2003.
I also was a member of the Pizza Jury in 1994.
If you like Jovi influenced material and want a cd email me at and Ill direct you to my website...


16/11/03: Hardline Webmaster -
Rating: 0
To make it short, Crush was a big disappointment, but TLFR is the biggest shit I have ever heard of Bon Jovi. Thanx to the internet that gave me the chance to listen to this songs, so I don't wasted my hard earned money on such a bullshit !!!

The new arranged songs sound like KId Rock on Dope trys to cover Bon Jovi !!!

Eeveryone should beware in buying such a trendy piece of crap !!!

If this is the future of Bon Jovi I'm not a fan any longer :(

14/11/03: Alex -
Rating: 0
Try Firehouse's new CD Prime Time... it's million times better than this ...Whats going on with JBJ anyways? I think it's about time for the guy to either take a few yrs off, or have a farewell tour and go their seperate ways.

14/11/03: Superstitious1 -
Rating: 50
I've followed the evolution of Bon Jovi from the self-titled debut in 1984, through "Bounce" in 2002. I've liked all the albums and have always been open minded to change, never insisting (or wanting) any two albums to sound the same. At first I thought it would be interesting to hear new versions of these songs, but now the phrase "don't fix it if it ain't broke" is ringing more true then ever. This album was a bad idea. While listening to it, I keep asking myself "why am I forcing myself to sit through this bedtime/elevator music when the original versions are so much more exciting?". What's the point of this album? Excellent production and a high level of creativity doesn't make up for the fact that these new versions just put me to sleep.

13/11/03: jon fletcher -
Rating: 5
What the heck did I just waste my (new low price, according to the sticker) $14.99 on!? If they want to win new fans, they should stick with the aggressive stuff, like the opener to BOUNCE. Even though BOUNCE was weak (6 ballads/6 rock songs), it was worlds better than this beer coaster! Yes, that's right! I now have a new beer coaster! A few tracks pleased me! IT'S MY LIFE - as a ballad, I like it; ALWAYS - I like the atmosphere on this one, and I have ALWAYS liked the song; and last but not least WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE - I really like the arrangement, but the machine like vocals ruin it. But these 3 songs are the only reason to listen to this. Normally I wouldn't recommend (did I spell that right?) burning stuff off the internet, but if you can in this case, do it! As for some real rock and roll, visit my band's website:

12/11/03: Gábor -
Rating: 0
Well. We often hear about the problems on downloading songs and either full albums from the internet. To be honest I really never did this till I've heard the Target Promo songs from the guys. I don't know if anybody heard those songs but if yes it can be comparable to these. Probably the worst thing I've ever heard in my life and now I feel lucky that I didn't give any money for it.

It's a good idea to transform some great, million selling hits into a different mood, but this time the only thing I can say is that it would be much much worhtwhile for them to get back to their roots and not trying to sell something under the name of Bon Jovi as this is just business, not about writing music from the inside the way they did before.

Gábor from Hungary

11/11/03: Wisey -
Rating: 10
The saying "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" sure rings true with this latest Bon Jovi release. I can't help but thinking when I listen to this album that the original versions of ALL songs on it are much better, and therefore will never play this album again. Quite frankly, why would anyone? BJ have wrecked the songs, and the album is just terrible.

An acoustic/unplugged type album would have been much better. Even though just about everyone else has done such an album, the songs would have remained more or less true to their original style, BJ fans would still have bought it, and it would be listened to a whole lot more.

The production on this album is slick & polished and because of that and out of respect for these classic songs as they were originally written this album gets a generous 10% from me, but in the main I think it is just dire, awful crap, and advise people not to waste their money on it.

Bon Jovi need to get their act together and bring out some new decent rock like they used to.

10/11/03: AJ -
Rating: 6
Where to begin??
I can't decide whether I love or lothe parts of this album, overal I think it's a good idea and some of the songs work...
I like the rework of Wanted' and You Give Love', I love the reworks of It's My Life, Keep The Faith and Everyday, but what let's the is album down are 2 things:
1) Jon's's not that he's not got a good voice anymore, he has, BUT he needs to sing songs that suit it...and (sorry to say) Bonjovi songs don't seem to...maybe he should realise his dream and form a Springsteen tribute band...then he could leave Richie, David, Tico and Hugh to carry on the good Bonjovi name...
which brings me to:
2) Richie Sambora...Richie, what are you playing at??? We know you're a great guitar proved on many ocassions you can play some blistering lead on acoustic as well as electric...WHERE IS IT??? This from a guy who was once quoted as saying he didn't know what was wrong with modern guitar players who didn't stand forward and solo...why don't you listen to your own advise Richie??
Overall, the production is top-notch, and for all those who question Pat Leonard's was he who crafted Bryan Adams' MTV Unplugged album into the success it was...
I have to say though with those who say that Jon's vocals are terrible...I saw the band live earlier this year, and while the music was still there, Jon's vocals weren't, and he didn't have anywhere near the energy of previous tours...If they're recording a new studio album, let's just hope that Jon learns how to sing 'properly' again, and that he regains some enthusiasm for the music, not just the dollar..!! If not, well, I'm sure Richie woud be more than happy to oblige and take over lead vocals...I know I'd pay to see that..!!

10/11/03: ddregs -
Rating: 20
What can I say? Not the best interpretations to these great songs, not the best twists to those songs, and they don't add anything at all to the greatness of these songs.
Plus they don't get Torres to shine, he's a key to Jovi's sound.
Avoid this recording if you like Bon Jovi the rock band. If you follow each MTV release, go and buy this out. You'll listen to this record until a new wave of commercials comes out.

10/11/03: Lars -
Rating: 5
Haven't heard such an bad album of Bon Jovi, and "7800° Fahrenheit & "Crush" were lousy albums. Has anyone noticed that the songs are arranged by the producer Patrick Leonard. Is that the guy who produced Madonna??? I hope fon a new Richie Sambora album, which could only be better.

10/11/03: Tim -
Rating: 95
See what wrote...and I pretty much ditto that. I LOVE this CD...but it's because I appreciate it for what it IS, not for what it is NOT. And for thinking, gettin' down with my lady, or just grooving around town in meditation mode, this is fantastic. I didn't expect new songs (though I am PISSED they left off Last Man Standing...clips I heard sounded AWESOME) and I didn't expect a rocker. We'll get more of that next year almost guaranteed with the boxed set....but this is a nice treat, for those who will appreciate it...just don't fool yourself and expect the wrong thing.

10/11/03: Scott -
Rating: 2
Hands down - this is the worst crap I've bought in decades. Not only am I mad at the $13 I spent on the CD, but also for the hour of my life that I will never have back for listening to this stank garbage. Even if I had downloaded it with P2P - I would have been upset for wasting my bandwidth. A much better idea for BJ and the gang would have been to redo each song in the exact opposite mood (e.g. ballad becomes rocker, and vice versa). The last several commercial CD's released by the band have been increasingly worse.. as a fan since 1985, a purchaser of every CD since 7800 Farenheit, and seeing the band live in their heyday (1986 - Hampton Roads, VA), there is apparently no direction but down. Perhaps it's time for Richie to jump ship again - not only can he play his nuts off on guitar, but is now the better singer of the duo. Based on recent nasty reports of BJ enraging fans at concerts, and the steady decline of his studio work (aka: let's create only ballads, and crappy ones at that), lets hope that BJ will wake up to smell the coffee - melodic rock needs a band that will chart and have air time on the radio; BJ is still providing that need, but it's waning fast.

10/11/03: Eddie -
Rating: 0
After a massive downhill slump in songwriting, BJ put out this travesty. We saw Crush, their re-emergence into the mainstream, which was pretty good, but a far cry from "classics" like New Jersey and Slippery When Wet. Then he gave us "Bounce", which is pretty much the SAME SONGS with different lyrics (ie, take the chord and song structure of the title track, and A-B it with It's My Life). This time they are doing the polar opposite; keeping the lyrics and changing the music, poorly! Of course, fan clubs and members of Jenny Craig will eat this up because, similar to Smuckers; If it's Bon Jovi, it HAS to be good. As far as overall performance, Tico went in and did his job as he always does, Hugh at least tried to polish this turd, and the others..........well, I guess one can get fatigued kicking a dead horse. Jon..........Jon Jon Jon, <sigh> It sounds like the one who lets 38 year old women behave like they are back in the 8th grade has just come out of anestesia from having his wisdom teeth removed, which may explain this very ill-thought execution of taking "classics", as some would like to view them, and completely suck the very essence out of them. But, like I said, fan clubs worldwide will eat this up when they are not spending time gossiping on various message boards. Even that battery company is having trouble giving this away, as I'm sure the single women could use the batteries. I can only hope that they will do the right thing.............stop.

09/11/03: Sam -
Rating: 85
I think that people are still upset that Bon Jovi is still around and are still succesful. First of all, people saying the electricity was sucked out of these songs is not exactly bright. The album was promoted as acoustic and reworked. If you want the guitar you will hear them when your supposed to!! In the original recording!!!! This album is awesome for sex, its awesome for driving, and its awesome for thinking. Thats it...nothing more. The only songs I was horrified with were Bad Medicine because it has NO BUSINESS being slowed like this and Ill be there for you...because, well...Jon sounds like garbage singing it. Other than that, my main concern is Olivia Dabo who is a horrible singer.

The positives though, and there are that Everyday is a gift, Its My Life is amazing, Wanted is very cool....although the one thing I agree with Andrew on is I dont think I dig the verse vocal effects...Bed of Roses is spectacular and my favorite (especially in bed) is Lay Your hands on me.

Now, as far as the reviews I have read on this board...I can only laugh. I laugh b/c every time I read a news update on JBJ it is in spite...and I expected to read a sour review...b/c well...thats all that is written here.

Dare I say it, but the jelousy of Def Leppard not getting promoted is the only reason there is so much hate around hear. I love Def Leppard too...and I pray they leave Island...but people is not Bon Jovis fault.

If you want rock..dont buy this. If you want something moody and artistic...give it more than one spin and youll be happy.

09/11/03: Dan Rudie -
Rating: 90
I have been a Bon Jovi fan since I first heard "Runaway" on the radio in 1984. I really like this album. When I saw the track listing I was dissapointed, because I thought it was just another Greatest Hits album. When I saw the songs were reworked I couldn't wait to hear what the boys had done.
This album continues to grow on me. Their is a lot of subtle instrumentation going on that really shows a growth and maturity in their music. Production is outstanding. Favorites of mine are "It's My Life" and " Everyday". Great Album and as far as I'm concerned it was money well spent.

09/11/03: Tony K -
Rating: 1
This Left Feels Wrong
By Anthony Kuzminski

Bon Jovi has never been a critic's darling. Why? Well, very early on in their career they achieved colossal success. You always root for the underdog and let's face it, if you were not a fan of hair band music in the late 80's when Bon Jovi was one of just a dozen of those bands with videos on MTV, nothing more. However, there was always something that made the band stand apart from all of those other bands. Proof in the pudding was in 1992 when the band put out their first album in four years and had to face the grunge-semi stomping everything in its path. The band prevailed with a successful world tour and an album that sold close to ten million copies worldwide. Since then, there are those critics who have come to embrace the band and others who see them as lucky bastards who have just been in the right place at the right time. Since 2000, the band has resurrected in a major way; the enormous success of "It's My Life" introduced the band to a whole new generation of fans. The band was selling shows out even quicker than they were in the 80’s. Proof of the success is the $40 million the band made from about fifty shows this year in America alone. However, while I have loved this resurgence in popularity, I have also had some misgivings about whether this hindered or helped the band musically.

In the last few years the band has elevated itself to new heights, but along the way have also made a number of gargantuan missteps and each one makes me wonder whether they continue to make music because they love it, or if it's for the almighty dollar. Let me say, first things first, I'm all for making as much money as you can. I have no issue with bands playing big arenas and stadiums. I have no problem with a band going on numerous talk shows to plug a product. It is a business after all and sometimes greater financial success means more creative ability to do what you want to do. However, there are times when decisions are made purely for financial profit and the music does not even take a back gets thrown out the window. One of the biggest blunders will occur on Tuesday November 4, 2003 with the release of their new album, "This Left Feels Right", a collection of reinterpreted “Greatest Hits”. Early in 2001, the band took a break so Jon Bon Jovi could film a truly atrocious film, the sequel to the James Wood movie, "Vampires". The end result was a film that only went to cable. During the filming of that movie, a decision was made to release a live album. The end result, "One Wild Night: 1985-2001" is one of the most inferior live albums to ever have been released. What upset me about this release is that Bon Jovi's prevalent secret weapon is their live shows. They are hands down one of the best live bands on this planet. They can pretty much give any live band a run for their money. The energy they put into their shows in unheralded. Yet, when you listen to the live album, it's so poorly edited and sequenced, you get the impression they took fifteen tracks (almost all of them had been released is some fashion previously to this album) and hit the "random" button on their CD player and simply put out the end result. Whoever put it together (Jon Bon Jovi had little to do with it since he was filming a movie) simply took the most recent mixes available of the songs and put them out without a single thought about sequencing, feel or themes. Liner notes aside, the entire album was a massive faux pas. Even more exasperating was the fact that the band was handed a detailed outline of songs, sequences and choices for the best versions of songs that should have been put on the live album. More distressful was the fact that the CD was one disc. This may have been a record companies decision, however, something both they and the band should have considered is the fact that with a few rare exceptions, live albums don't sell by the tens of millions. If the band had chosen to release a solid two CD set of live performances, the band would have passed the one hundred million mark in record sales sometime last year. But they chose to release a one CD set and the irony is that no Bon Jovi fan really listens to the album. Instead we choose to listen to bootlegs and b-side compilations (created by the fans) as those titles have more soul and spirit than the official live album.

More evidence the band is more concerned with milestones and money is the fact that "Bounce" failed to propel the band pass the one hundred million mark (despite overexposure and whoring themselves out on QVC and the Super Bowl). So what do they do to solve this issue? They decided to release an album this fall. Initially it was supposed to be an acoustic greatest hits record. I thought this was a luminous idea because people I know who spurn Bon Jovi yet like certain songs when heard acoustically, in their rawest form; this showcases Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora as first rate songwriters. Plus the band did a handful of acoustic shows this past summer, which were among the best shows they had ever done in their career. Yet, somewhere along the line, the idea of an acoustic record changed to a reinterpretation of their "Greatest Hits". On the surface this sounds intriguing and refreshing. Guess what, it's not. I appreciate the fact that the band was inventive, creative and worked hard on what became "This Left Feels Right". However, the album is un-listenable.

Nothing on this album is really even worthy of being a b-side. The over the top production of "Wanted" with swirling electric guitars has grown on me, but still, this is the type of song you throw on a CD single as a "remix". "It's My Life" has been slowed down to an acoustic piano ballad, which is neither good nor bad, just dreadfully bland. "Livin' On A Prayer" has been reworked extraordinarily for the better part of a decade and yet they somehow managed to screw it up here. Instead of Sambora's backing harmonies, actress Olivia d'Abo (yes, the sister from "The Wonder Years") sings the harmonies with Jon Bon Jovi. The results are dreadful. The ballads ("Bed of Roses", "Always", I'll Be There For You") are all insipid and add no new dimensions to the songs that live or acoustic versions have in the past. Stadium anthems "Everyday", 'Born To Be My Baby" and "Keep The Faith" fall so flat in these new versions that I cringed when listening to them. The irony is that an acoustic b-side of "Everyday" put a completely new spin on the song earlier this year. "You Give Love A Bad Name" and "Bad Medicine" have been reduced to honky-tonk country versions. The master tapes of these two songs should be incinerated. There was reason why the band never played these songs in any other form than their original versions because these are songs that are arena anthems and there was not really any way to slow them down. They did that here and the outcome is ghastly. The one song that does stand out to me is "Lay Your Hands On Me". It has been completely redone and does have huge Peter Gabriel vibes all over it. It is creative and interesting, but then again, U2 has done some interesting stuff with their remixes over the last fifteen years, but you don't see them putting a CD out with "reinterpreted" versions of their biggest hits. "Hands" is the only track which does not make me cringe in its new skin. It is really a new song. Granted, I'll never want to see the song performed this way, but it is creative…not that it is any consolation.

The biggest surprise in all of this is that Pat Leonard was behind the board producing this set with Jon and Richie. I can't believe no one spoke up and tried to tell these guys what they were doing was just flat out awful. Pat Leonard is an incredibly gifted producer. A decade before Madonna gave birth to a child, discovered the Kabala and Yoga, she produced her deepest and most revealing album with Leonard. Many people think "Ray of Light" was her personal break through record. As impressive of a record as "Light" does not hold a candle to her 1989 album, "Like A Prayer". With the assistance of Leonard he helped her fine tune deeply emotive songs right up there with pure pop songs that even pushed the pop envelope. It's a perfect five-star album in every way imaginable. I am not sure what happened here with Bon Jovi, but I have a feeling it involved too many egos where no one wanted to tell anyone that what they were creating was horrific.

The band has had numerous chances to show the world what they are made of. Including what an electrifying live band they are with the release of a live album...instead we got a half-assed collection of tunes because their engineer was too lazy to look through the vaults, even though detailed outlines were presented to the band. Instead we got a bunch of songs tossed on a disc without any rhyme or reason. They could have offered something truly unique on their QVC broadcast (a full live DVD); yet instead we got something that was pathetic at best. Now instead of a proper acoustic CD, which could possibly open other people's eyes to the bands vast talent, we get a disc that should be reserved as b-sides, or given away as a free disc with another purchase at a store like Best Buy. Triumph The Insult Comic Dog (with whom Bon Jovi did a hilarious skit on Conan O'Brien in 2001) would not even find a CDR copy of this album poop worthy. Between this album, the mediocre live album, ticket prices for stadium shows reaching $150 with service charges (I'm sorry, unless Keith Richards is on either side of you, you have no business charging $100 for a stadium show) and the bands obsession with getting as much money imaginable, I and many other die hard fans are becoming sick to our stomachs watching the band whore themselves out. They intend to release a box set next year and I’m not even excited - because after years of waiting for treasured demos to come out, I have a feeling it will be anticlimactic.

To add insult to injury, this album was originally going to have two new songs. One of them, "Last Man Standing" Jon Bon Jovi played one morning when he was a guest DJ in New York. This song, mainly an acoustic number, showcases everything this band does extraordinarily and even has hints of early Dylan in the lyrics, a compliment of the highest regard. This is the type of song that would make non-fans stand up and say "Hey, that is a really profound lyric and maybe there's more to this band than I am willing to give them credit for". But no, the band decided to drop these songs at the last minute. I would have forgiven the release of this album if it contained the two new songs. I would have viewed it as an elaborate CD single with a bunch of remixes.

If that's not enough to ruffle my feathers, the band is auctioning off fifteen minute Instant Messaging Sessions with Jon Bon Jovi on Ebay. These auctions are going for $2,000 a pop. Now granted, no one is forcing anyone to bid on them, but what kind of band does this? They do not need the money, so why do it? I don’t remember seeing how the band squandered their money away on Behind The Music? I also remember Jon Bon Jovi saying how he made his first one hundred million by the age of thirty-five. So why on God’s green Earth would the band allow themselves to be sold on Ebay? The worse part is that none of this money is going to charity; it is a pure commercial endeavor. The same goes for the DVD taping the band is having in Atlantic City later this month. They are charging people $200-$350 to watch this performance. Now, while other acts get premium dollar for seats at this Casino, everyone seems to be overlooking one huge thing: this is a taping for a DVD that will generate millions upon millions of dollars for this band around the world. Not only that, but the record company is picking up the bill for this show. Is there any reason that the band should be charging those kinds of prices for a DVD taping where mistakes will happen and the band will redo numerous songs throughout the night? No, there is no reason the band should be charging that kind of money. Once again, not a cent is going to charity.

I will give “This Left Feels Right” an "A" for effort for wanting to do something innovative and stimulating, but they get a "D" for the final product as the songs come off as soulless. Like "Bounce", this album was over-thought. This is why they are a far superior live band…there is no over thinking in that arena, they get on stage and play what they feel. Just once I'd love to see Bon Jovi strip back everything on their records and let everything come naturally. "Bounce" has some truly remarkable songs on it, yet so many of them were lost in its overproduction. Their amazing and daring output from 1990-1998 seems to be gone forever as the band is less willing to take chances. It’s a shame, because by taking chances the band could move forward. I remember a band member who once had t-shirts made up that said “Who Dares Wins”. Maybe it’s time for Bon Jovi to pull that shirt out of the closet and give it a good look.

I pray to God they don’t work with Pat Leonard on the next full-fledged studio album. I can only wish they would produce it themselves or bring in someone who wants to record the band live. Everyone that I play the “Bounce” demos for is amazed at how superior they sound to the actual over-the-top production of the album. How about bringing back Peter Collins (who produced 1995’s “These Days”) or even better, hire Steve Van Zandt as he was largely responsible for the sound on a number of albums that Jon grew up with and influenced him to become a rocker in the first place (Southside Johnny’s “Heart of Stone”, Springsteen’s “The River” and “Born In The USA”). I truly believe that Steve could give the band that kick in the ass it so seriously needs right now.

In late 1991, Jon cleaned house in the Bon Jovi organization to give the band a fresh perspective. It also helped the band clear the decks and concentrate on making music. Hopefully they will get back to doing that soon. I believe it is time to clean house again because whoever is giving them advice is clearly not doing it in their best artistic interests. I still believe Bon Jovi is a great band. I just hope they find their way and don’t stray any further. Hopefully they will come to learn that less is more. If it isn't broke, don't fix it.

09/11/03: Jason -
Rating: 20
Well when I read that Bon Jovi was going to put out an acoustic album I thought that it would be great. Acoustic, not trying to reinvent the wheel. I have said it for years now. Mercury or Island/Def Jam whatever you want to call it is not in the hard rock game any more. Def Leppard put out two great releases and was not promoted. Bon Jovi promised us a rock record and we got Bounce. Instead we got a hybrid Matchbox 20 record. THIS LEFT FEELS RIGHT should have been put out by Matchbox 20. That way we wouldn't have bought it. JON BON JOVI says that he wants to use this producer on the next record. If he does expect another waste of time and money. Bon Jovi should listen to the new FIREHOUSE CD- PRIME TIME and listen to what the fans want. A touch modern, and I mean a touch, but still kicks ass.

08/11/03: max -
Rating: 85
this album sounds great.The best songs are:Everyday(for me better than the original from BOUNCE),Born To Be My Baby,Always.One disappoint is the new version of You Give Love A Bad Name its horrible!!!!!!!!!!!

08/11/03: Keith -
Rating: 1
Jon Bon Jovi should record another solo CD. I thought that was his best cohesive effort in a LONG time...In no time, we will be hearing the news of the Bon Jovi Elevator Music Box Set....

(and I love Bon Jovi. I think Jon is/was a great songwriter.)

08/11/03: Tim -
Rating: 10
Listened to the CD once and will not put it in again. I can't believe Bon Jovi released this crap.

08/11/03: Bryan -
Rating: 70
Throughout the CD I kept thinking "maybe this is JBJ's excuse to sing these songs in a lower register because maybe he can't cut it vocally anymore.

I must say that the more you listen to these songs (in this new way) the more it grows on you. It is mainly a background music disc that you can throw in and play all the way through (usually used to settle my daughter down).

08/11/03: Rene -
Rating: 10
Weak album this is. Songs sound pretty much the same, theres no energy in them - extremely boring. I think Andrew is being kind giving it a 65 score. This album is a waste of money and couldnt have taken more than a couple of weeks to make. A clear money-maker album from Bon Jovi - maybe they're saving up to their retirement?

08/11/03: Stacey -
Rating: 30
As a huge fan of Bon Jovi, I am totally disappointed in this album. I don't know what they had in mine when recording, they should have stuck with their original ideal of a box set. These songs hold some good memories for me and they totally destroyed them. They are rocking songs and it is like they totally sucked the life from them. I know people are gonna say I am not a real Bon Jovi fan, but they are wrong I just don't like this album. Like people, you have good and bad qualities. This album is the bands bad quality.

08/11/03: Jere -
Rating: 40
This album is probably the worst Bon Jovi album released. I'm a huge fan and supported the guys on every album they have put out from their self titled debut to Bounce (Crush and Bounce lack but have some really good songs on them) but as much as I tried I couldn't get behind their latest release.

When I first heard the band would be putting out an acoustic album I couldn't wait, I'm a fan of the unplugged sound for me a band doesn't show their true talent until they sit down with a couple acoustic guitars and put raw emotion into a song. I thought this album might capture the magic of Jon and Richie's unplugged peformance at the 1989 MTV Music Awards but this album is so far from that.

Out of the 12 re-worked hits four of the songs (It's My Life, Bed of Roses, I'll Be There For You, and Always) are the only good tracks. Bon Jovi has destroyed three of their best songs (Bad Medicine, Lay Your Hands On Me, and You Give Love A Bad Name - these are Bon Jovi rockers not acoustic!!) and should of never been released.

The band should of spent more then three months on this project, the quality of these songs are bad and there is hardly any emotion put into this album.

If your looking for an acoustic album I wouldn't start here. Instead pick up Firehouse's Good Acoustics first in my opinion it's better produced and recorded and unlike Bon Jovi they actually took their time on it.

08/11/03: freddy de keyzer -
Rating: 50
What's the point of this ? Why releasing this ? No, I like Bon Jovi, but only a rocking, 'electrified' Bon Jovi !
This is so boring, a real waste of time and money.
Sorry, this is nothing for me at all !!!

08/11/03: Don Hosler -
Rating: 0
Haven't heard it yet, and after reading this review...


They need to stop trying to "modernize" themselves and stay true to who they are...we don't want country/industrial/twangy/ versions of tried-and-true songs.

Sounds like another excuse for Jon to not sing as high as he used to !

08/11/03: Frank -
Rating: 10
... And 10% is probably generous. I have been and will always remain a devoted Bon Jovi fan, but these renditions of some of the band's all-time classic cuts are nothing short of horrible! I felt like I was at a funeral... If the vocals were any slower they'd be non-existant. Do yourself a favor and purchase a crisp, new copy of Slippery When Wet and remember the band for what they once were, and hopefully again will be!

08/11/03: Wade Phillips -
Rating: 85
I've been a fan since Runaway, teenager of the 80's. While I pull out the 80's albums here and there, I appreciate the shift in the 90's that the band made. The music has sorta grown up as I have. I like this album. It's really an album to listen to loudly to catch the subtle changes in the percussion and string layers. The stand-out tracks for me are It's My Life and Everyday. There are really only three tracks I don't really care for ... Bad Medicine, You Give Love A Bad Name, and I'll Be There For You. These just didn't translate well. There are some aspects of the production I like, but it left me thinking about what it could have been, as Andrew said. The lyrics are the focus in Bad Medicine now, which I've outgrown. You Give Love a Bad Name has a cool Stray-Cats or David Lee Roth (bluesy) feel to it, but Jon's vocals just aren't good in that register. I'll Be There For You, it's the vocals again. I just don't think Jon sounds as good in the lower register. One final note, I really like Living On A Prayer, but the female vocalist just doesn't seem to fit for me. I would have chosen someone with a voice like Sheryl Crow. The first phrase she sings sticks out ... the rest of her vocal part is much better though.

All in all I like this album, but I would have been probably more satisfied with a pure acoustic album.

08/11/03: Charlie -
Rating: 28
Being a fan since the very first album after seeing them in a small club on the first Lp's tour I was disappointed by the sheer lack of energy in which these tracks were delivered. At times the group sounds like a Lounge act at the Holiday Inn jaded by their past. I could almost hear Vegas on the Phone. Check out the reviews on to see the slagging this disc is taking. The disc fails mainly because of the delivery the total lack of any heartfelt singing and not a whole lot of changes in the pacing of the songs, by including Olivia d'Abo (Karen Arnold on The Wonder Years) they have sunk to a new low. I have waited in vain for the last three releases for them to give us a disc that has more than 1 or 2 good songs. I long for the days of "New Jersey" or "Slippery When Wet" where every track was a keeper. The only track on this disc that I would play over again is "Always". It's hard to keep the faith when the last three releases before this have all lacked any spark. Their "Live" disc was a total waste of time why not release a single show instead of slicing and dicing and putting 2 second gaps with the tracks. My advice to people is to hunt down the Bootleg "An Authorized Bootleg" Every track is killer and not a whole lot of filler, if you have to get this one wait for it to reach the cut out bin (cheap bin) that way you won't feel the wind sucking the $13.99 out of your wallet and you won't feel as bad as I did paying full price for this load of Lounge Lizard Pap.

08/11/03: David Pelleman -
Rating: 9
As the scale says this album is totally crap! This was a highly anticipated release given the original intent which was to have an accoustic live album from Japan. Then they changed their minds and said it would be an accoustic studio album. Great! How long have us die hard fans been waiting for an accoustic album from this band? Then, they said they are going to strip down and rework the greatest hits. Well in my humble opinion the result is garbage! An insult! It can't be that the band needs the money so, I am baffled by this simple awful release. DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY ON THIS ONE!!!

08/11/03: jerry -
Rating: 6
Bon Jovi goes acoustic!. Great news, i thougt at the time. But after hearing the cd i'm a bit disappointed. Maybe i was expecting something else or...... Some songs are great like It's my life, some or a big mistake like You give love... I think its tough for a long time fan to appriciate the songs in this way. When you play the cd you intend to song according to the original recording, but it has changed. Most of the songs are much slower or have even another melodic feel to them. I personally was expecting a more traditional unplugged cd, which i think would be great! Instead the band choose this direction and i basically do not think that this will be huge succes or a classic album. People or too much used to the old anthems and will not accept most of the new versions

07/11/03: zgrt199 -
Rating: 30
This is truly a terrible album....I am a huge Bon Jovi fan and usually enjoy their acoustic renditions of previous this case..STAY AWAY!!! Jon is trying way to hard to update his sound and be something he is not...this is one of the most difficult albums I have ever had to listen to as it never quite develops a grove or flow....listenening to every song became a challenge...Richie Sambora is noticeably absent vocally, which I find strange after recent years where Richie has even assumed some of the lead vocals live in hurts me to say this because Bon Jovi is my favorite band, but I wasted money buying this album

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