Deja Vu All Over Again

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Deja Vu All Over Again
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About this item

Important Made in USA Origin Disclaimer: For certain items sold by Walmart on Walmart.com, the displayed country of origin information may not be accurate or consistent with manufacturer information. For updated, accurate country of origin data, it is recommended that you rely on product packaging or manufacturer information.

It's been 30 years since John Fogerty's swamp-rock band Creedence Clearwater Revival squatted on the charts with hits like "Proud Mary," "Born on the Bayou," and "Fortunate Son." Since then, the reclusive singer/songwriter has put out sporadic solo albums that never fail to go gold and platinum as longtime fans snap them up and radio happily adds that legendary voice back to playlists. On Deja Vu All Over Again, his first new studio album in seven years, Fogerty stays true to his roots while mixing in styles that range from punk to acoustic swing.

Fogerty has always been a fan of baseball (remember the 1985 hit "Centerfield"?), and for the title track he borrows the famous nonsensical quip from legendary Yankees catcher Yogi Berra in lodging an acoustic-electric protest against the war in Iraq, comparing it indirectly to Vietnam. Over a walking, Creedence-like bass line, a churning guitar groove, and strains of moody organ from Tom Petty bandmate Benmont Tench, Fogerty sings, "Day by day I hear the voices rising/ Started with a whisper like it did before/ Day by day we count the dead and dying/ Ship the bodies home while the networks all keep score."

While some things, like foreign wars, seem to never change, others do -- such as Fogerty's current state of domestic bliss. Usually, critics equate such happiness with bad music making, but to his credit, Fogerty exploits the "settled down" life for excellent material. For example, the former CCR frontman pokes fun at his middle-age lifestyle with "Honey Do," a funny rockabilly lament about the chores his wife lines up for him every weekend. And on the similarly themed "Radar," Fogerty sings dryly about his wife Julie's sixth sense when it comes to finding him, even when he's intentionally hiding out from family responsibilities. The tongue-in-cheek song is an interesting mesh of styles; its disco intro giving way to new wave guitar in the verses, and then a Farfisa-driven neo-surf chorus.

Fogerty has his humor intact (hey, if you don't laugh, you cry, right?), but he also celebrates the more reverent side of domesticity with a string band folk song for his daughter Kelsy (pictured walking hand-in-hand with Daddy on the CD sleeve's back cover) that's called "I Will Walk With You." Accompanied by tasty Dobro from bluegrass icon Jerry Douglas, old-timey double bass from Viktor (Alison's brother) Krauss and wispy mandolin from Bob Applebaum, Daddy sings, "If you get a scrape/ I'll brush away the tears/ Come what may/ I will walk with you." It's by far the album's most touching, heartening ode to family life.

At other times, Fogerty looks outside the kitchen window for inspiration and his crotchetiness comes out. On "Nobody's Here Anymore," he criticizes people for being detached from real life thanks to technology -- like cell phones -- that keeps us constantly distracted, even behind the wheels of our giant SUVs. Beyond the cultural criticism, the song's notable for the guest guitar work of ex-Dire Straits frontman Mark Knopfler, who sounds like he's straight out of his 1978 prime. In fact, it's impossible not to hear "Sultans of Swing" in the stinging fretwork.

Fogerty also gives us another pseudo-scary Halloween-style song -- the latest in a long line of former Fogerty hits that include "Eye of the Zombie" and "Old Man Down the Road." Focusing this time on a "Wicked Old Witch" as the central creepy figure, the song is the album's best showcase of Fogerty's signature Creedence-style guitar work.

At other points on Deja Vu All Over Again, Fogerty steers from the tried and true to follow his bliss, as he does on tunes that recall diverse inspirations Sugar Ray ("Sugar-Sugar"), the Ramones ("She's Got Baggage"), and his one-time contemporary, Jimmy Hendrix ("In The Garden").

Fogerty had fun making this record; one that celebrates the simple, fundamental things: marriage, parenthood, monsters and rhubarb pie; and laments the things that get in the way, like war and the blind worship of technology. As he was with CCR, John Fogerty remains a champion of the common man and the common good -- just like he always was, all over again.

By Todd Spencer

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Specifications

Digital Video Formats: CD
Performer: John Fogerty
Assembled Product Dimensions (L x W x H): 5.00 x 0.42 x 5.63 IN
Release Date: 09/21/2004
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Track Listing

1. Deja Vu (All Over Again)
2. Sugar-Sugar (In My Life)
3. She's Got Baggage
4. Radar
5. Honey Do
6. Nobody's Here Anymore
7. I Will Walk With You
8. Rhubarb Pie
9. Wicked Old Witch
10. In The Garden
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