John Fogerty reclaims his rightful place among America's most iconic and revered artists with Revivial; 12 all-new songs that incorporate the best elements of an artist that deeply resonates with generations of music fans and thousands of other artists he has influenced throughout the years.
The self-referential title of Fogerty's first album in three years is no mere play on words; this is as close as he's gotten in a long while to duplicating the loose swamp blues, country, folk, soul and rock that he so memorably created a template for in Creedence Clearwater Revival. Thankfully the advertisement for downloaded ringtones in the disc's booklet is the only contemporary influence creeping into this stripped-down set of rootsy rockers and ballads. Fogerty's voice sounds great throughout; passionate, more committed and comfortable with these songs than he has seemed in years. His material has often leaned towards politics, especially as it concerns the working class, but seldom as directly as on the gutsy choogle of "Long Dark Night" and the rollicking "I Cant Take it No More." He seems like a cranky dad on "It Ain't Right," railing about spoiled pop tarts in the spotlight, and "Summer of Love"'s look back at the titular time in the late '60s falls on the schlock side. But Fogerty charges into "Longshot" like the angry young man of "Fortunate Son," singing "I ain't got no 'ristocrats a-hangin' in my tree" with an assurance and intensity that reaches through the speakers and grabs the listener. Just like in the old days. --Hal Horowitz