The Bon Jovi Experience, the Assembly, Leamington, May 19.
THE Bon Jovi Experience are aptly named as they go all out to reproduce a Bon Jovi gig, going as far as introducing themselves as the real Jovi band members later in the evening.
The stage looked mightily impressive with a huge drum-riser draped in the Stars and Stripes flag, the rear wall full of backdrops and racks of guitars on the stage as the guys made their entrance and launched straight into a rousing ‘Raise Your Hands’. It was obvious from the start that, as expected, the band’s ace in the pack is their front man who in looks, voice and audience manipulation is a dead ringer for the real thing.
It would have been very easy to guess most of the evening’s set list and that is far from a criticism as everyone I am sure wanted to hear the stadium filling hits and they were all in place, including You Give Love A Bad Name, Born To Be My Baby, a funky Keep the Faith and Wanted Dead Or Alive, complete with tonight’s Richie on double-necked guitar.
Possibly surprise inclusions in the set were going back to the very early years Runaway and Jon Bon Jovi’s solo hit Blaze of Glory.
The crowd was one of the best and liveliest I have seen yet at the venue, clapping, singing-a-long and arm waving for practically the whole set, and it was a fantastic turn-out with a large percentage of ladies (but then again the girls all love Jon).
The evening ended with possibly Bon Jovi’s most popular and greatest tune Livin’ On A Prayer. Tonight started a capella style before it lifted off into the rocking crowd-pleaser we all know and love.
Cover bands are not to everyone’s taste but when as much fun and up to the mark as these guys it makes for a great night out.
Verdict: A fun, crowd pleasing, feelgood night out.