Lost Highway – Bon Jovi

Bon Jovi is as comfortable as an old pair of jeans or a long-time friendship. They pay some tribute to country music on Lost Highway, their 10th studio album in their 20 plus years as a band. Singer Jon Bon Jovi has always been obsessed with cowboys hats & boots but only from 2005 has his band’s music strolled on country-rock territory. But the band delivers on this 12 track album. Ofcourse the standout & first single You Wanna Make A Memory shines on as one the New Jersey boys’ best tracks ever. Slide guitars straddle this album and at times Richie Sambora steals the limelight but I still think his best playing was pre-Crush, released back in 2000. A nice surprise comes in the form of a duet with LeAnn Rimes on especially on Till We Aren’t Strangers Anymore, singing in a perfect country girl twang.

One thing Bon Jovi should avoid is the type of song that leaves you wondering what is wrong with them. I am talking of We Got It Going On and their ilk. Again, these started popping out from 2000 onwards as it is evident that they are rocking a bit hesitatingly. The title track is a mid-tempo song, half ballad-half rocker and all nostalgia & upbeat about traveling through life. The kind of song that you’d expect from experience and years of doing things your way. Summertime is a poppier song about how his mate makes him feel. With a good video this song can make the rounds of VH1 & MTV for a few months. Whole Lot Of Leavin’ is a plea to a lover to stick together while there are too many people leaving something of the other, their hometowns, country or their lovers.

However, they still have too many semi-ballads & ballads and songs about the same things for my taste. Any Other Day is about barely hanging on, Seat Next To You tells the lover that she is the one the singer wants to be for all times, Everyone’s Broken is comforting a person who is pained & upset, saying that it happens to everyone and that it’s part of life. The Last Night is about leaning on someone in the dark times that plague our days. One Step Closer & is like a dozen similar songs, while the party song I Love This Town is basically a resort-bar party style song about a…. town!

This album is a good one but kinda dull at places. It may grow on me a bit and I think overall it is a bit better than Have A Nice Day.

Song for the day – “You Wanna Make A Memory” – BON JOVI

Zeyda and the Hitman

So what do u do if you are ill on a boring & rainy evening and black coffee being the only thing fueling you? You switch on the telly and see if by some miracle of fate an interesting movie happens to catch your eye. I often get pleasantly surprised by a small budget movies, like this one. Zeyda and The Hitman (also known as Running With The Hitman) is a Canadian movie, set & shot on location in Winnipeg, Manitoba, although three of the main characters are American actors. Starring: Danny Aiello, Judd Hirsch, Mercedes Ruehl, Gil Bellows, Reagan Pasternak. Hirsch (Jeff Goldblum’s dad in Independence Day) plays Gideon Schub, a retired Jewish grandfather who had a stationery supply store. He gets tired of paying for his daughter Natalie (Regan Pasternak) & son-in-law Jeff (Gil Bellows) and stops giving them money. Jeff, who is preparing to enter & win a trivia playing game show that can net him $5 million, stops Gideon from seeing his son (and Gideon’s grandson) in retaliation. Pushed too far, Gideon introduces himself to Nathan Winkler ( Aiello), a scary debt collector for the Mob doing community service as a security guard at Gideon’s synagogue and who thinks Gideon is a model person.

Winkler, although part of the mob family, has never killed anyone before, his previous attempts amusingly ends him up in jail. Gideon also thinks of ways to kill Jeff, all of which he dismisses. Initial attempts do not bear any fruit, until Nathan comes up with what the two of them thinks is fabulous – switch Jeff’s favourite sauce, that he loves to smear on his wings, with a one based on peanuts. And Jeff is super allergic to peanuts! Brilliant…only thing is the cops find out and wire Nathan to implicate Gideon. Nathan tries to warn Gideon that he is wired when they talk about the final plans and even dumps the peanut based sauce into a toilet but the cops have enough to bust Gideon. But at the trial, his long standing good reputation and his advanced age lets him off with house arrest for a year.

The movie is narrated by Nathan as he lectures some young offenders at their school about getting out of their life of crime. Initially taunted by the youngsters, he receives a standing ovation at the end of the story. Watch it over some evening coffee & snacks. 7 outta 10!

Second Day Of Free Agency

On the second day of free agency in the NHL, The Los Angeles Kings added several pieces to their impressive stable of young players Monday night in a flurry of free-agent activity that saw Michal Handzus, Ladislav Nagy, Kyle Calder and defenseman Tom Preissing land in Los Angeles before the end of the business day.

The Anaheim Ducks signed Todd Bertuzzi, who had ended last season with the Detroit Red Wings, to a two year contract. Detroit also lost Robert Lang to the Chicago Blackhawks.

Ken Klee moves to the Washington Capitals.

The Montreal Canadiens signed defenseman Roman Hamrlik, who spent the last two season with the Calgary Flames, to four-year deal on Monday. They are also hoping that that star defenceman Sheldon Souray decides to stay in Montreal.

Micharl Nylander signs up with the Washington Capitals on a four year contract.

The Nashville Predators signed up Radek Bonk & Greg De Vries from Montreal & the Atlanta Thrashers respectively.

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How I Met Your Mother

I wasn’t feeling all that well today, so I took a leave from work and stayed home. Wanted to check out what was on tv, when I caught this show – How I Met Your Mother. I had been wanting to see this series from when I first heard about it and last month around the 13th, it was announced that Star World was going to start airing it. This series just started in September, 2005 and it has won an Emmy. It stars Josh Radnor as Ted Mosby, Jason Segel as Marshall Eriksen, Neil Patrick Harris as Barney Stinson, Alyson Hannigan as Lily Aldrin & the smoldering Cobie Smulders as Robin Scherbatsky.

In the year 2030, Ted (voiced by Bob Saget) gathers his daughter and son to tell them the story of how he met their mother. The story begins in 2005 with Ted as a single, 27-year-old architect living with his two best friends from college, Marshall and Lily. Lily, a kindergarten teacher, and Marshall, a law student, have been dating for almost nine years when Marshall proposes. Their engagement causes Ted to think about marriage and finding his soul mate, much to the disgust of his friend Barney, a womanizer with a lucrative though unnamed corporate job. Ted begins his search for his perfect mate, immediately falling for ambitious young reporter Robin, who quickly becomes part of Ted’s group of friends.

My interest in this series has been because of two factors, actress Alyson Hannigan & actor Neil Patrick Harris. Alyson Hannigan was the cutesy & occasionally ditsy ‘Willow’ from Buffy The Vampire Slayer and the American Pie movies. She is always fresh faced & funny & cute in everything that she does. Neil Patrick Harris is ofcourse most famous for his four year portrayal as the teenage doctor in Doogie Howser M.D. during the early 90s. He also acted in Starship Troopers and played a doped up & sex crazed version of himself in Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle. I didn’t know the other three actors. But now, I will be watching this show to also gaze at Cobie Smulders who is just lovely & sexy. She is a former international model from Canada and also plays a Canadian in this series. Cobie plays Robin, who is an ambitious Television Anchor, who dates Ted and becomes friends with the other three.