Thursday, May 27, 2010

Circle Arc 5: New Meadowlands Stadium

Let me start off by saying, I'm very VERY disappointed in the set list for tonight. I know, I said I wasn't going to get my hopes up, and I didn't but I really expected more. That being said, we did get some amazing stuff tonight, and I'll get to that in turn.

We took the train from Seacaucus to the stadium. A whole mess of us. It was great, because we got left off right outside the gate. Super easy, and we wouldn't have to worry about the parking lot zoo afterwards. We went through security (who barely checked my bag DAMMIT - I didn't bring the good camera tonight because I heard a story about someone who was turned away from the gates (not here obviously) and I got freaked out. Then I asked one of the guest services guys inside the stadium and he said, "no, detachable lenses are fine" so tomorrow, I'm bringing it.) and went on a quest to find water.  H-O-T HOT tonight.

The stadium itself is gorgeous (as it should be, because it's new). The stage is enormous (if you haven't experienced a stadium show before, the stage is elevated quite a bit from the arena shows, and is MASSIVE. Lots of space for Jon and the guys to move around, though Jon is the only who takes advantage.

The opening graphics sequence on the ginormous screen that spans the endzone is just fantastic. It's essentially the same as in the arenas, but they have it tied in to the screens that ring the stadium, so as the little pulses happen, they traverse the whole of the stadium. Pretty neat.

The opening licks of Blood on Blood started, and my first thought, I swear to you, my devoted, was "Great. Blood, Follow, Bad Name." Yep, got it right the first time. Not that those aren't great songs, but still...

You'll be saddened to know that Jon did NOT take my costuming advice, and they were sans cut-off short-shorts.  They were dressed in standard concert attire.  Maybe tomorrow..  They had to have lost at least a gallon or two of sweat each tonight.  Those tight clothes, while appreciated by [most of] the fandom, are NOT good for hot weather.

Jon made some remarks about being the first guy to introduce the home of the 2014 Superbowl ("The New Meadowlands Stadium: I like it, I like it, I like it. Out with the old, in with the new," Bon Jovi told the crowd. "I get to be the first guy to get on a big microphone and say welcome to the home of the Super Bowl!") and to say he would like to see a Jets/Giants Superbowl in 2014. As a rabit Patriots fan, I had to stick my tongue out at him.

He also made a comment about "The only american idol you need to see is standing right here!" Very funny, and the crowd liked it.

NJ.COM has these first three videos up. I'm too tired to sort out how to stream/download them, but I know that by tomorrow there'll be a zillion videos on YouTube (Catte, hopefully you'll be out of your anniversary sex coma, and can go OCD all over that).

The setlist continued with Whole Lot of Leavin' which is one of my favorites from Lost Highway. Bobby does the opening sequence, and just does an amazing job with it. As an aside, Bobby was dressed in a flippin' suit the entire night, and did NOT take off his jacket, nor did his hair appear to be sweat-drenched. Wonder what his secret is?

Anyway, We get Born to be my Baby (a real crowd pleaser) followed by Lost Highway, and Raise Your Hands.

Raise Your Hands made its debut this tour, and was a nice treat. I have to say, I consider that one of the "staples" so was CERTAIN that it has been played already but nope. I woulda lost the bet on that one.

Then came Runaway.

If you were following along on Twitter, OH MY GOD.

Partway through the song POOF! The sound goes. I mean GOES. You could hear Tico's kit, and those in the pit said they could still hear the guys a little, but damn. It was quiet for a WHILE. Like half a verse and a chorus. Close to a minute.  Jon kinda gave a little smile, but kept right on singing, complete with the little faces he makes. We helped out, singing along until the speakers came back on. Twitter's all a-twitter wondering who's getting the blame (read as fired) over this. It was a BIG glitch. To Jon's credit, he didn't mention it at all, just kept right on going.

Then we got the WWWB/Superman duo, and most of our section sat down for a breather. We were on the FLOOR, section 1, 10 rows back. And the section was half-empty to begin with. Sold out my ass (don't get me started on that again. I know about the filler tickets and the stupid VIP/Exec/Corporate tickets, it just irritates the fudge outta me). I just don't get it.

Next up, We Got It Going On, Bad Medicine/Roadhouse Blues (which is my favorite pairing so far) with a Shout teaser, but just I think he just wanted to shake the sweat out of his hair. Once he had our attention, it was "a good thing there's no roof on this joint" as they launched into It's My Life. Slowed down with Love's The Only Rule, which I think was better in the arenas when Jon could go through the crowd to get out to the circle. He did shake hands and stuff on his way, but it's not the same. As he disappeared below the main stage at the end of the song, Richie donned his hat (not THE hat, but the other one lol) and took center stage for Lay Your Hands On Me.

Sidebar note here, I think it's cute that he doesn't remember all the words to the song, and just sings the same phrases over and over. It's okay by me; he's getting his singing time, and this means tomorrow we get Homebound Train. I'd rather have Stranger (the other song I want to hear sometime before I die -- Never Say Goodbye was the first, and I got that at Mohegan).

Jon broke out Hallelujah tonight, and it was absolutely beautiful. If his allergies and what not were bothering him, he put it aside for this song. Richie joined him for I'll Be There For You, and I was torn between watching them on the screen where I could see their head-to-head duet with perfect clarity or watching them from my seat, so I was facing Richie. It was a tough call; I alternated between the two :)

Let's see, what next.

You can probably guess it.

Go on, I'll give you a minute

Got it yet?

Yep, the Something for the Pain/Saturday Night acoustic pair which is (I guess) a signal for GET MORE BEER (shakes head). It's not a sporting event. It's a freaking concert. At the end of the acoustic set, David had to haul ass with his accordion back to the stage.  He actually cradled the thing in his arms and BOOKED back to his keys.  He turned his back to his tech who unfastened him and helped slip the instrument off his shoulders.

We got a great treat in Have a Nice Day -- complete with Richie flipping off the crowd at the end. This is one of my favorite live songs. It has a great energy and I'm not tired of it yet.

I am tired of the next two songs. Working Man and Who Says. *sigh* That's all I'm going to say about that.

Then we got Keep the Faith. Amazing energy, though Jon kept flexing his non-maraca hand; not sure if he was cramping up or if he was trying to flick sweat off of it. Lots of shaking (assets and maracas) and we got a short but suhWEET fireworks show with the song. The air was just heavy enough for the smell of the spent shells to be a bit overpowering on the the field, but just breezy enough that before you could get sick on it, it was clearing away.

The guys took a few minutes to get themselves together, then came back out for the encore. Within 2 minutes, they were pouring sweat again :)

When the opening notes of Dry County sounded, my heart literally clenched in my chest. This song is on my "take some songs to a deserted island" list, and I haven't heard a version I didn't like. This is my first time seeing it live, and I have to say, it just blew me away. The whole rest of the practice set list was worth it to get to this song.

I know of at least three people who're uploading closer copies of this to YouTube right now, and you HAVE to find it (you can get it on the BJCT in a day or so) and watch it. The solos were just beyond thrilling. Tico was a freaking MADMAN behind the kit, and Jon was just all over the place happy-happy. He sang the "real" words to the song, not the words he reworked during sound check. It was just beyond fabulous.

Then of course, we got Wanted and Prayer.

26 songs this evening. Only a couple "new gems" in the bunch, but that did not, in any way, stop it from being a fantastic show.

Honestly, I only get hyper about the set lists becasue of the BJCT. If I wasn't watching the set lists so closely, I wouldn't even realize the similarities. But because of the other blog I'm more attuned to the duplicates.

 Do I wish I had sat this one out?


 Am I jazzed for tomorrow's show even though I know in my heart the "Big Event" will be Saturday, and I'll have to live it vicariously through my girlfriends?


Because it's Bon Jovi.

And I love them.

Bring on night 2.

~ Hath


Anonymous,  May 27, 2010 at 10:15 AM  

Thank you Hath. I always enjoy reading your reviews!

~ Sterling

Bayaderra May 27, 2010 at 11:40 AM  

I enjoyed every second of it! From drinks and burgers, meeting Rike, songs, lost sound, sweat, fireworks, to the last encore!!!!
OK, time to do it again!

p.s. Alex says "Hi"!

Anonymous,  May 29, 2010 at 1:12 AM  

Great Review Hath. Love your site.


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