This House Is Not For Sale (Live From The London Palladium)
Label: Bon Jovi Profit Split
Recorded while coping with the departure of guitarist Richie Sambora, as well as slugging their way through contentious contract talks with longtime label Universal Music Group, This House Is Not for Sale is an album stained in struggles both personal and professional. Yet it also is a supremely rousing affair, one filled with potent, driving rockers championing resilience and fortitude. “Knockout” is absolutely humongous sounding, anchored by Jon Bon Jovi’s raspy swagger (which has aged impeccably), battle-cry harmonies and Tico Torres’ thumping, metronomic kick drum. “We Don’t Run” is even tougher, a pounding testimonial about standing tall even when life seems to be falling to pieces. Sambora’s replacement, Phil X, makes an instant impression. Though he rips a handful of scorching solos (see the alt-rocker “Born Again Tomorrow”), he really excels at thick, churning riff-work that propels the grooves and textural atmospherics. For the latter definitely check out “Labor of Love,” a moody, Springsteen-inspired ballad showcasing the guitarist’s beautifully chiming chords.