Customer Reviews: Pendulum
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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on June 4, 2005
I am not from CCR's generation of hippies and Vietnam veterans but a twenty year old in a generation of Britney Spears and Backstreet Boys. What does this have anything to do with CCR? I don't listen to my generation's music hardly ever. I must be a born again dope smoking hippie because all I listen to is classic rock. My dad handed me down this album when I was in junior high in the late 1990s and it was my first awakening to what great music sounds like. I'm very familiar at this point with most of the music of the late 60s and 70s and I will still claim CCR's Pendumlum is one of the greatest albums of its kind from this period of rock and roll. I think what makes CCR so great is their ability to molt jamming rifts in which you can dance up and down to into sweet melodic jams in which you can chill. They do it perfectly with John Fogerty on lead guitar and his brother Tom on rhythm playing together with Stu Cook on bass and Doug Clifford on drums. I can't think of too many bands with a better combination. Pendulum is one of those albums you could probably listen to anytime of day and with any kind of mood. I guess if you're into the way harder material from that time, Pendulum might be a downer but not necessarily. I listen to Deep Purple and Zeppelin to Fleetwood Mac and Jackson Browne. I think CCR is that place in between all of these bands. I'm in love with all the songs on this album so its hard to say exactly which ones to listen to for a first glance. When I first started listening to CCR, I was definitely digging the softer sounds and the melodic tunes in music so I think I will always be more affectionate to "(Wish I could) hideaway" "It's just a thought" but jams on "Pagan Baby" and "Hey Tonight" are equally as fantastic. I know my perspective on this album compared to other CCR albums may be biased since this album was my first and it has great sentimentality attached. But there is a reason that this album converted me from the 90s back to 1970. I now listen to everything including hip hop and old country but CCR will always have me, especially this album.
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on March 8, 2000
This is actually my favorite CCR album. Funny that, as many fans only rate it one notch above MARDI GRAS. The major sticking point for most is the departure from the CCR formula into some different kinds of music - most of it kinda Soul-y. John Fogerty, always an underrated musician, had already mastered guitar and drums and was now playing organ and sax.
The opening "Pagan Baby" really rocks out, if you like "Ramble Tamble" from COSMO'S FACTORY you'll love this - Fogerty truly achieves guitar-hero status! Both sides of the then-current 45 ("Hey Tonight" and "Have You Ever Seen the Rain?" - the latter covered to charming effect by REM in concert back in 1985) are first-rate. There's also some neglected gems like "It's Just a Thought" and "Hideaway". Top notch stuff. Even the villified instrumental "Rude Awakening #2" (where #1?) has a beautiful opening section. I play this more than any other Creedence LP, 'nuff said.
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on May 30, 2000
For some reason,a lot of CCR fans dislike PENDULUM .True,it is not as good as COSMO'S FACTORY,GREEN RIVER or WILLY AND THE POOR BOYS;however,I place it ahead of CREEDENCE CLEARWATER REVIVAL,BAYOU COUNTRY,and MARDI GRAS.By this stage,CCR had more chart success in three years than most band only dream about.John Fogerty wanted to experiment with keyboards and saxaphone(all group members could play more than one instrument).Several styles of rock were played with:reggae(SAILOR'S LAMENT),soul(CHAMELEON,BORN TO MOVE),old rock'n'roll(MOLINA),progressive instrumental rock(RUDE AWAKENING NO.2),and hard boogie rock(HEY TONGHT,PAGAN BABY).The old CCR style was still present,however(HAVE YOU EVER SEEN THE RAIN,IT'S JUST A THOUGHT and HIDEAWAY).As a result of the experimentation,most critics complained that PENDULUM was a wildly uneven album.I prefer to think of it as a noble musical experiment.Also,as a result of John's perfectionism,Tom Fogerty quit the group not long after PENDULUM's release.This paved the way for CCR as a trio and MARDI GRAS.But that,as they say,is another story.
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on October 4, 2008
With Concord Music Group having purchased the Fantasy catalog, the fortieth anniversary of Creedence Clearwater Revival's debut LP provides a suitable opportunity for a fresh round of reissues. All six of the original foursome's albums (from 1968's Creedence Clearwater Revival through 1970's Pendulum) have been struck from new digital masters and augmented by previously unreleased tracks. Those who purchased the 2001 box set can pick up most of the bonus tracks separately as digital downloads (the two longest bonuses are CD-only). Those who didn't buy the box, and think they'll buy all six reissues may want to consider the box set for its inclusion of pre-Creedence work from the Blue Velvets and Golliwogs, the seventh CCR album Mardi Gras, the 1970-71 live recordings and several box-only bonuses. But for those just wanting to pick up a few favorite albums, these reissues are the ticket. Each is presented in a digipack with original front and back cover album art and a 16-page booklet with photos, credits and new liner notes.

Creedence's sixth studio album in 2-1/2 years, Pendulum, marked their finale as a four-piece; two months after its December 1970 release, rhythm guitarist Tom Fogerty would quit the group for good. Unlike the summary of their musical inventions heard on 1969's Cosmo's Factory, their latest LP found John Fogerty pushing the group in new directions, including more blatant nodes to New Orleans funk, Stax soul, and experimental studio productions. The album's press - both at the time and with this reissue - suggested the new focus was partly motivated by the dismissive attitudes of the band's peers. With a string of top-5 singles and a lack of trendy sounds on their albums, Creedence wasn't always given their due as innovators. Fogerty may have felt stung, but instead of capitulating with nods to current trends, he sought to lead the band in new directions. Fogerty may well have felt restless after stringing together Bayou Country, Green River, Willy and the Poorboys, and Cosmo's Factory in just 18 months. Fogerty wrote all of the album's songs for the first time, employed sax solos and a vocal backing chorus and, most conspicuously, added generous helpings of Hammond B-3.

Given all those changes, the album opens with a characteristic heavy rock jam that would have fit the group's debut. The organ lining the album's single, "Have You Ever Seen the Rain," portends the larger changes to be found within the album, and those innovations first kick in with the organ, saxophone and chorus backing of "Sailor's Lament." Fogerty's keyboard provides a spooky introduction to "(Wish I Could) Hideaway," offering melodramatics that harken back to the group's earlier cover of "I Put a Spell on You." Fogerty's fascination with Stax turns blatant on the funky "Chameleon," and the structure and riff of "Born to Move" provide a solid nod to Rufus Thomas' "Walking the Dog."

As a producer Fogerty gives his rhythm section its due on "It's Just a Thought," moving the bass and drums forward and rewarding listeners with some of Stu Cook and Doug Clifford's terrifically melodic playing. The album closes with the Little Richard styled rocker, "Molina," and the six-minute prog-rock experiment "Rude Awakening, No. 2." The latter provides a "heavy" bookend to the album's opener, but aside from the acoustic guitar intro, it's rather tortuous. Closing track pretentions aside, this is a solid album whose new directions may not measure up to the group's peak, but might have proved fruitful had the group not dissolved with 1972's Mardi Gras. Bonus tracks on the 2008 CD reissue include the promotional single "45 Revolutions Per Minute (Part 1 and 2)," which finds the band experimenting in the studio with a "Revolution #9" like montage of production tricks, backwards tape, sound effects, musical bridges, comedy bits, and San Francisco DJ Tom Campbell. Wrapping up the disc is a live take of "Hey Tonight" recorded by the three-piece Creedence in Hamburg on their last tour of Europe. [©2008 hyperbolium dot com]
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on May 30, 2015
The last in a successful run from an overnight sensation.....which started a full decade earlier. In the late 60's and early 70's, CCR ruled! OK, we know all that and the history that destroyed the band, but their catalog still holds up decades later. I found no filler in any of their albums, though some may argue that point with the covers.

After the popular Cosmos Factory, the band took a slight turn. The catchy AM songs remained, but things like Rude Awakening number 2 is something that even Zappa would be proud to call his own. Hey Tonight, Born to Move and Molina have always been great tunes, but unbeknownst to us, it would be the last. Tom Fogerty left the band after this and released a solo record which was not a commercial sucess. I' still waiting on John's memoirs on this time period, because Doug Clifford and Stu Cook were a solid rythm section, there is no denying that. And when Tom was with them, it was a firm foundation for John's songs.

What has always perplexed me is how a bunch of kids from the N California bay area can produce such authentic Swamp Rock!
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on August 2, 2012
With "Pagan Baby" opening this album, CCR sort of misrepresents themselves. The tune is classic CCR. Think of the vitriol of "Fortunate Son" and the guitar frenetics of "Ramble Tamble." Quite simply, the song, at nearly 6 1/2 minutes, rocks. But it does not at all pave the way for what follows. The rest of the album, though soulful and melodic, is J. Fogerty exploring other musical passions besides rockabilly and the "swamp rock" for which he had become known. The songs on Pendulum borrow their sensibilities from the Stax sound. There are horns and choirs and tight arrangements. It mostly works, but it is a very different sounding CCR than the band who released back to back to back albums, all classic, all near perfect, only two years prior.

"Hey Tonight" and "Have You Ever Seen The Rain?", both wonderful songs, were the hits from this collection. Not their best effort, but still a solid album.
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on May 10, 2016
'Pendulum' is Creedence Clearwater Revival's one true studio album. Unlike all the ones before it, this one was meant to be an album, not a collection of hits to be played live. Thus their 6th album earned its name because it was a swing in direction for the band. It left the traditional covers behind and gave us all originals. And swing it does. This album has touches of jazz, soul, gospel and country mixed in a rock and roll concoction that is so pure it just makes you feel good. It is one of the great examples of American music out there, sounding just as fresh today as it did brand new in December 1970.

The cover shows the band in what looks like an old sepia re-touched color photo, like something from a hundred years ago. It reflects the music inside which almost seems to be standards from the American repertoire that have been around for just as long. Because their style seems to like something we have all heard in our youth. Like they have always existed but were just never put on record.

Tom Fogerty lays down the albums rhythm guitar in a clear uncomplicated way which anyone could play. There is no deception here, this is true everyman music. Stu and Doug supply a sturdy, solid low end groove throughout. This band was simple but it was tight. The coming cracks were not musical, they were personal. Surmised in the fact that Tom’s younger brother John not only wrote all the songs but he played all the lead guitar parts and sang. And apparently he played all the organ and horn parts too. And on top of that he produced the album too.

As you know, his younger brothers’ dominance would get to Tom and he would quit the group, which in turn split the band apart by causing Stu and Doug to want their fair share. All of this seems insane to most of us fans who think “You are one of the biggest bands in the world and you self-destruct over Ego?”

Just look at where they were at. 1969 brought us ‘Bayou Country’ which is said to have sold a million copies in Los Angeles alone. Then came ‘Green River’ which was #1 for a month. In November came ‘Willy And The Poor Boys’. Credence had just created 3 albums in 1969 which all sold in the millions. Then came ‘Cosmos Factory’, which sold 3 million copies by the time 'Pendulum' was released only 5 months later. John was exquisite at creating hit singles, their combination of beat, melody and likeable lyrics came naturally to him. ‘Cosmos’ had contained 3 top 10 hits. Adding those to the 4 top 10 singles they released in 1969 explains why, with 7 singles in constant rotation, Creedence Clearwater Revival had ruled American radio for the past 2 years. They were perched at the top of the world and their next single, 'Have You Seen The Rain' and its flip side, 'Hey Tonight' would take them into 1971 on a high note.

In short you go from the rags of playing in seedy bars for years to no acclaim, to a taste of the good life with ‘Suzi O’. Then, only 2 ½ years later, you’re enjoying the riches of dominating all your Bay Area rivals in sales and popularity. The album covers gatefold image of the massed crowd and the girls waving says it all. The Fans loved you, all of you. And you throw that all away over Ego?

Prophetically, the back cover shows Tom peering out a window separate from the band.

I had this LP for a dozen years before someone stole it in 1982. I thought all that time that ‘Born To Move’ was the first song and that the album ended with ‘Wish I Could Hideaway’. Playing it that way makes more sense to me. On the back cover the songs were not listed in order, starting instead with ‘Chameleon’. Either way you play it, it has a well-defined start and a well-defined end.

“Don’t be savvy, spread your love on me”
Cymbal taps introduce us to the great ‘Pagan Baby’. A guitar run repeats itself several times before the drums kick up, leading into the rhythm, bass and drums. The band powers on this crunchy riff before stepping through some guitar hoops, then reverting back to the riff again. Another break and then the song speeds up. A bright high pitched lead solo breaks loose as John lets it rip, sounding like he’s never had so much fun playing before. He gives us his longest most agile guitar licks ever as we feel like we are flying down a long empty country highway. Stu adds a few bass jumps as John yelps along. At 6 minutes it comes to a downshifting end too soon. ‘Pagan Baby’ is easily one of CCR’s all-time greatest songs.

“One eyed Jacks and Jokers too”
Now we are playing cards, that all American pastimes where people go broke. And at this table someone is going to drop some cash tonight. ‘Sailor’s Lament’ flows shuffle like at a snappy pace, with its bongos, bass, horns, drums and folk guitar swaying back and forth. Organ adds a light touch to go along with a chorus of backing vocals. A happy song for a not so happy outcome.

“Lord it’s so hot then you come on coolly cool”
Things speed up again as a drum roll starts ‘Chameleon’. The horns really propel this one along as John talks to his deceiving two-faced woman. Doug’s drumming is strong here as he whips those cymbals into shape. I am not sure, but it sounds like there could be piano on this one. This song is a good match with ‘Molina’. They could be sisters. This fits well within the Creedence catalogue. The only difference being that instead of guitars it's the horns that play the lead instrument.

“Someone told me long ago, sun is cold and rain is hot”
Speaking of the catalogue, what’s with another rain song? At the beginning of the year they gave us ‘Who’ll Stop The Rain’. Now here we get ‘Have you Ever Seen The Rain’. This one is just as good and is a fan favorite for sure. John says, unlike the first one, this one is not about Vietnam; this is about the band fracturing around him. He could see what was coming but did not let on, and the band knew not what the lyrics were referring to. It is classic Creedence, the one song on the album that everyone has heard.

“I can hear the leaving train”
A short organ solo takes us to ‘I Wish I Could Hideaway’. The crunchy sound of the organ and the choppy rhythm guitar set this one swelling back and forth. The organ dominates as John gives us a sad song of loss. It is a beauty, more mellow than the rest of the album. And John hits his highest vocal register on this one. The long fadeout is peaceful, giving us a reverent end to it all. This would be a great ending to the album.

“To the music loud I can’t get enough”
‘Born To Move’ blast off with organ and guitar. John’s gruff vocals call on everyone to move to the music. Organ and horns now set the groove. A funky guitar section leads into the second verse which then winds down and stops. We are left with only bass notes and cymbal taps. We now have the top and the bottom. This sets the tone until the organ comes back into play. Slowly adding the beef, Doug’s rounded drumming patter sets a tidy bed for an organ solo. The band grooves in this fashion through the rest of the song. While it may be a song just to get the crowd up and dancing, this creative interplay of bass, drums and organ was new for Creedence. Pay special attention to how Stu’s bass just seems to dance along doing its own thing.

“Jody’s gunna get religion all night long”
Flying guitars announce the arrival of ‘Hey Tonight’. A traditional Creedence fast rocker, the bass and rhythm guitars roll along up and down like they are once more flying down that open country road. It mixes religion with sex and good times awaiting us in the dark. It ends with the group flying down the road, our imagination sparked by what’s going to happen tonight. Simple and to the point, this great song grabbed your attention and woke you right up every time it came blaring out of the radio.

“I noticed something strange, getting harder to explain“
The reflective song in this set is 'It's Just A Thought'. It sounds kind of like a lesser version of their last single ‘Someday Never Comes’. Tastefully played by Doug and Stu, this organ based song sounds like it could be played in your neighborhood church.

“Riding in the patrol car”
Doug’s snappy drums start up 'Molina'. She is the towns party girl and when she spends the night in jail we can bet she is not sleeping alone. Those same snappy drums and floating cymbals highlight 'Molina's' breaks, while the band keeps up the pace with its robust drive of organ, horns and guitar. The horn solo is just too cool. When ‘Molina’ comes to a complete stop you think that is it. She’s short but sweet. But then the band comes back for a few more measures and you can just sense the fun these guys are having.

This band can sure lay down some good old home style cooking rock and roll. And they play it so simply and freely and with such a natural gait that it seems like they have been playing these songs all their lives. Like their songs are a hundred years old and already a part of the American conscious.

‘Rude Awakening #2’ starts out like a nice folk flavored happy tune. What happens after that, well, if ever there was filler on an album this is it. I have no idea what they were thinking other than filling up space to complete the record. Was this sound collage their response to those weird bits that bands like Jefferson Airplane would put out? Despite this ending, the other songs are so good that they overcome this weirdness.

This album sold more than their debut, but not as well as the others before it. Maybe it was their oversaturation on the radio? Maybe it was the lack of folk guitars and country influence? Maybe it was too much horn and organ? Whatever it was, they still made what many consider a great album, and except for the ‘Sweet Hitchiker’ that was to come the next summer; they never made music this great again.

‘Cosmos Factory’ was the first album I ever bought, and as great as it is, 'Pendulum' is still my favorite and most played Creedence Clearwater Revival album. Grab yourself an ice cold Hamm’s, the crystal, clear water beer, and relax and enjoy the greatness of real American music. Because you just discovered the diamond in the haystack, CCR’s hidden treasure, 'Pendulum'.
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on March 12, 2016
Just got it today-3/12/2016!! I love it!! Awesome!! Fantastic!! Amazon is like a Xmas Wonderland!! I will be doing all of my shopping here!! Great music store!! Great!! Amazon has everything you could ever imagine or want!! :o)
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on November 17, 2014
This realy is an excellent CCR album. Yes it is a bit different then the albums that came before it but in my opinion its up there with the rest of this great american bands out-put. The 2 bonus tracks of 45 revolutions per min are very funny to listen two. Especialy the 2nd one. This realy was CCRS swan song and its music to enjoy in any setting. I always found CCR to be a very tight musical group and the musicians on top of there game as usual.To John,Tom,Stu and Doug thanks so much for all the great music you have provided the world with...
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on July 26, 2014
If you do not know who CCR is then you must be from another planet! I was torn between saving money by buying their entire works collection box set or getting the CD's separately. I decided the Album art work was as important to me as was the music it's self. I was not disappointed and am very happy I went with the individual CD's.
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