There are few things better than when a label digs out songs by a
great band and shines them up and puts them out in a nice package
with some nice bonus features. The newly released Creedence Clearwater
Revival Singles Collection is such a wonderful little CD
set for those exact reasons
all the really essential tracks
are represented, and they sound really, really fantastic. The songs
have been remastered, but not cleaned up too much; the grit and grind
that forged the trademark sound of CCR is still in strong evidence.
The two-disc Singles Collection includes all the songs that
one would expect. "Proud Mary", "Down On The Corner",
"Fortunate Son", and many others instantly recognizable,
but the meat of this collection lies in the tracks that are not still
lauded by classic rock radio. Brilliant tracks like "Long As
I Can See The Light" are the highlights of this great collection,
songs that have the same catchiness and brilliance that still makes
many CCR songs such radio staples today, but songs with a gritty earthiness
that makes them not quite so corporate radio ready. There are some
things here that I never knew existed, such as the part 2 of the very
famous "Susie Q", a track that shies away from the rockabilly
of the familiar part 1, and opts for a more psychedelic and jamming
sound with searing guitars and grooving drums. The great songs are
all here, and remastered to be even punchier and more "present"
"Lodi" has never sounded better (in the digital realm) and
"Run Through The Jungle" has even more punch and clarity
than I remember ever hearing before.
Another benefit of a vast collection like this is the attention it
brings to songs that one may have forgotten, or never heard. "Someday
Never Comes" always seemed a sleeper to me, but hearing this
new mastering of it brings it to the forefront and it is fast becoming
my favorite song in the CCR catalog. The set also includes some new/mostly
unheard snippets. The second disc wraps up with about 12 minutes of
noise collage/interviews with the band called "45 Revolutions
Per Minute (Parts 1 and 2)"
a strange glimpse into the
lives of the band and the industry. The set also includes a DVD with
some pretty cool videos, including a fun video for "Bootleg"
with the band playing on a cruise ship among a bunch of 70's youngsters
laying down some sweet dance moves. The videos are mostly just performance
style videos, but are a nice time capsule to the style and artistic
sense of the day
and of John Fogerty's mustache.
The Singles Collection is a wonderful group of songs by a
band that quite possibly had more influence on much of rock's pantheon
than most would allow. The tracks here are edgy and show a maturity
and depth that would not sit well on radio today. This collection
is a testament to not only the band and their music, but to a time
when music was dangerous and had influence on the culture and makings
of the world.
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