John Fogerty


Classic Rock - - The Hard Stuff - John Ai­zle­wood

The one that turned him into a recluse again and the one that topped the Swedish chart. John Fogerty’s 1985 US

No.1 al­bum Cen­ter­field sug­gested that af­ter years of strops and le­gal mis­ery fol­low­ing his de­par­ture from Cre­dence Clear­wa­ter Re­vival, his ca­reer was back on track. But the fol­low­ing year’s Eye Of The Zom­bie (6/10) didn’t make the Top 20, and af­ter a tour on which he dis­ap­pointed his au­di­ence by re­fus­ing to play any Cre­dence ma­te­rial, Fogerty went into an­other huffy hi­ber­na­tion. It was a star­tling and star­tlingly fast de­cline.

Thirty-one years later, for all that his song­writ­ing was peak­ing again, the prob­lems with Zom­bie are clear. It was an anti-80s al­bum – al­most hys­ter­i­cal with grumpi­ness on the ti­tle track and Vi­o­lence Is Golden – but Fogerty’s own pro­duc­tion was unashamedly of that decade: all shim­mer­ing syn­the­sis­ers and elec­tronic drums, at the very mo­ment his fan base were won­der­ing whether Proud Mary was still rollin’ down the river.

Blue Moon Swamp (’97) got him back on track, but seven long years later Déjà Vu All Over Again

(6/10) (reis­sued, like Zom­bie, with­out ex­tra tracks) was an at­tempt to re­claim old ground. On the protest ti­tle track, on the gen­tle I Will Walk With You and on No­body’s Here Any­more (fea­tur­ing a Mark Knopfler cameo) it was as if Cre­dence had never dis­in­te­grated, although Honey Do showed that his pen­chant for filler still loomed.

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