Reviews

Bon Jovi / Slippery When Wet / Pure Audio blu-ray audio

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Last year, Universal Music reissued Bon Jovi’s 1988 album New Jersey to a reasonable amount of fanfare. There was a remastered 2CD deluxe edition in addition to a three-disc ‘super deluxe’ box set. One format that was excluded from that reissue, was a ‘Pure Audio’ blu-ray audio. With the band’s previous album – 1986 blockbuster Slippery When Wet – the exact reverse has happened  – and the album has recently been reissued only on the Pure Audio blu-ray format, with no other editions issued.

Why Universal have chosen to put this out seemingly ’under the radar’ isn’t entirely clear, but in essence, the blu-ray audio is a upgrade from the 2005 ‘dual disc’ – the now defunct format that offered a CD audio on one side and DVD audio/video content on the other. Like this new ‘Pure Audio’ release, the dual disc contained a remastered stereo version and a newly mixed 5.1 surround version of Slippery When Wet. It also took advantage of the DVD format and offered five bonus videos.

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The blu-ray’s surround mix is really great. Not absolute top-grade blow-your-mind amazing, but a very solid job with enough going on in the rear and centre channels to make it worthwhile and great separation and fine overall balance. Some tracks are slightly extended with unfamiliar outros which is a nice bonus –  Living On A Prayer being one such example. Thought has also gone into the on-screen menus which feature lyric screens that automatically change and update the words as the song goes on.

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Good menu screens with animated visuals

One talking point with this release is the fact that this ‘Pure Audio’ disc contains the same bonus videos (with surround sound) that were on the dual-disc. The reason that this is significant is because one of the self-imposed ‘rules’ of the Pure Audio format is that it is supposed to be purely audio (literally ‘pure audio’) with no video content. This was emphasised in my interview with Oliver Robert-Murphy back in late 2013, and was enforced to such a degree that Warners’ CSNY 1974 release on a pure audio branded blu-ray came with a separate DVD for the video content.

As far as I am aware this Bon Jovi blu-ray audio is the very first Pure Audio release that includes video content. This means one of two things; either someone has forgotten to read the Pure Audio ‘rulebook’ or a deliberate decision has been made to relax said rulebook and we may now see some future releases include video content as part of their offering. Either way, the video content is very welcome and this new disc is a winner and comes recommended.

The Slippery When Wet blu-ray audio is out now.



Notes: Region: ALL. Bonus videos are 4:3 and in SD video.

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14 responses to Bon Jovi / Slippery When Wet / Pure Audio blu-ray audio

  1. Jon says:

    Makes far more sense to use the format to it’s fullest capacity by including videos/bonus content if they are relevant. Quite why they’ve not been on previous releases seems a missed opportunity.

  2. Steve says:

    I originally picked this up when it was issued on dual disc ( remember them?!) . The dvd side is the album in 5.1 advanced resolution and does sound very good well mixed and really brings the power out of the tracks. Strangly the dvd side album tracks were all slightly longer than the cd side. Also include were 5 videos for the singles.
    Also released on dual disc was their album have a nice day again in 5.1 with videos etc wonder if this will come out next?

  3. Johan says:

    If I use the link for Germany it forwards me to amazon.ca.

  4. OberonOZ says:

    I wonder if this means they will re-issue other DualDisc multi-channel releases in Blu-ray Pure Audio. That could be cool.

  5. Carlton Fisher says:

    It would be nice to get some re-releases of the dual-disc material (at least the better stuff) on Pure Audio. I liked the surround mixes that were coming out for some of the albums, but the discs themselves were such a pain in the ass, since the CD side would play in some machines and not others, because they were not manufactured to standard CD specifications. As a result, some of the discs that i went out of my way to get he dual-disc version of, I wound up having to go out and get the standard edition of as well so I could listen to them in my car or home systems that weren’t hooked to a DVD player.

  6. LedMan says:

    Purchased this shortly after it was released and 100% impressed with sound quality for both 2.0 and 5.1 mixes. Haven’t watched the vids yet however I agree that if available there’s no reason they shouldn’t be included. Great review Paul.

  7. Ray judson says:

    So I have the DualDisc and have always thought it was pretty good…so is this Blu-Ray that significant an upgrade audio-wise? This isn’t an all time favorite album of mine but I do like a handful of tracks quite a bit. Should I upgrade?

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      I don’t have the Dual Disc, so can’t comment really. Unlikely to be a ‘significant’ upgrade to be honest although others may chip in and tell you otherwise.

    • Neil Wilkes says:

      If the 5.1 is the same then what would be the point?
      The DualDisc is high res DVD-A at 24/96 in both 5.1 & stereo, so why bother if you already have this?

  8. Gisabun says:

    I find it quite empty for these BR audio release not to include extra material – either extra audio or video. I don’t think anyone would complain about extra material.
    Obvious this “rule” of no videos apply only to Universal labels.
    Compare against [for example] Steven Wilson’s Hands Cannot Erase which contained the album as well as an instrumental version of the album, 40 minutes of additional tracks and videos. That’s bang for your buck.

  9. Kaj says:

    Thank you for your review. I have now ordered this blu-ray audio, and it is on the way. I should receive it towards the end of this week.
    It is strange thou, that it is released without any heads up from HFPA.
    Mando Diao: Aelita blu-ray audio is something you should check out Paul.
    :)

  10. Kaj says:

    So, now I have listened to this. I listened to stereo and surround.
    The 5.1 mix is the one that sounds more interesting to me.
    There is some new small changes here and there that makes this one interesting. The sound stage is wide and airy. I did not own the dual disc version of this music, so this was perfect for me. If I compare this blu-ray audio release to a remastered cd, well, then this blu-ray audio is the one that gets my money. I already own this music on cd, so why bother buying a second cd?

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