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Live At Woodstock

Creedence Clearwater Revival

Craft Recordings 2019

Review by David Bowling

 

John Fogerty disliked, or more appropriately hated, Creedence Clearwater Revival’s performance at Woodstock. No songs were included on the famous Woodstock album or in the subsequent movie. A few songs have surfaced during the last half century, but for the most part they have remained unreleased; until now.

Live At Woodstock presents the entire Creedence Clearwater Revival performance at the famous festival. I can only think of two other officially released live Creedence concerts; Live In Europe and The Concert and Live At Woodstock is superior to both. It is the complete concert and has a very live feel and unless some other concert material is found and released; this is their definitive concert statement.

Creedence was three albums into their career at the time, so this concert contains a lot of material that was later eliminated from their live shows as their future hits mounted up.

The concert concluded with “Keep On Chooglin'” and “Susie Q.” The two songs stretch out to 22 minutes of music. As their career progressed they became known for re-creating their studio releases. Here, there is a lot of improvisation and the band stretches and explores territory that they rarely visited.

“Bad Moon Rising” and “Proud Mary” are competent performances but an extended “Commotion” is a gritty affair, while “Bootleg” has a rare high energy from John Fogerty and band. Add in “Ninety Nine And A Half Won’t Do” and a cover of “The Night Time Is The Right Time” add up to both an interesting and well performed concert.

The sound may not be up to 21st century standards but for 1969 is very good. The two Fogerty brothers guitars are both distinct and layered on top of the rhythm foundation. The sound may lapse at times, but overall the album provides an enjoyable listening experience.

In addition to being live, this is a different Creedence Clearwater album. Many of their well know songs are missing but this is more than made up for by their exploration of material that resides deeper in their catalogue. Live At Woodstock is an excellent Creedence Clearwater album; just from a different perspective.

Rating: ****