Creedence Clearwater Revival
Creedence Clearwater Revival – 40th Anniversary Edition
There are pillars of rock, and then there are the very foundation stones. Creedence Clearwater Revival started as a bunch of high school kids in El Cerrito, CA and became the pioneers of swamp rock. Their southern blues style may seem a big step from the Bay area, but they spun it into a string of #1 hits and top-selling albums. Naturally, this couldn’t last. The usual demons of pop stardom killed the band, and lead singer John Fogerty went on to on to a number of lawsuits and personal problems. His only subsequent hit was the 1980s’ baseball-inspired “Centerfield.”
This re-release of CCR’s debut album includes the hits “Susie Q” and “I Put A Spell On You” along with some lesser-known but still noteworthy cuts like “Ninety Nine and A Half” and “Porterville.” The disc includes four bonus tracks, including a live version of “Susie Q” recorded at The Fillmore. It’s a long track to begin with, and the two versions fill up nearly half the space on the disk. I like this song, but after listening to both versions while stuck in traffic I was ready to put on some Pavarotti or Patti Smith. Besides the bonus cuts, there’s nothing included with the disc, although the original pictures of the band on the cover are a trip. This was the beginning of the pretentious hair period of rock, and the boys are posed in a series of stilted photos wearing Civil War uniforms. You can almost smell the end of the ’60s.
The raw thrill of the music is still present — forty years of experimentation hasn’t come up with anything that invalidates the emotional experience of CCR. They draw you in with their music, and you’d swear they were good old boys from the Delta if you didn’t know any better. Heck, I didn’t know, I just did a little background check on them.
Concord Music Group: www.concordmusicgroup.com