On that hit, “Till We Ain’t Strangers Anymore,” “Whole Lot of Leavin'” and “One Step Closer” Jon Bon Jovi hopes to salvage relationships on the brink. A friendly city with “a cop on the corner [who] knows everybody’s name” makes the invigorated singer proclaim, “I Love This Town.” Other songs celebrate the clear-headedness found on the open road (“Lost Highway”) and reassure fellow works in progress that “Everybody’s Broken.” Counsel offered to a hurting friend puts stock in faith, trust, forgiveness, prayer and perseverance (“The Last Night”).
Spiritual allusions suggest that “salvation” comes from romantic love. In addition to lacking marital context, a duet with LeAnn Rimes prescribes physical intimacy as the answer to a couple’s problems (“Till We Ain’t Strangers Anymore”). Mild profanities mar three cuts. “We Got It Going On” (with Big & Rich) is an ode to hard partying. Passing references to alcohol pop up throughout, while “Any Other Day” seems to recommend “catch[ing] a beer buzz in the morning just to get a little edge.”
This Nashville-inspired retooling of New Jersey’s premier ’80s rock band contains truly positive moments. Still, Lost Highway doesn’t always keep it between the lines, picking up good-ol’-boy attitudes along the way.
After serving as an associate editor at NavPress’ Discipleship Journal and consulting editor for Current Thoughts and Trends, Adam now oversees the editing and publishing of Plugged In’s reviews.