It’s been 50 years since Creedence Clearwater Revival released their seminal album Cosmo’s Factory.
The blues rock classic was released on July 16th, 1970. It went on to become one of Creedence’s most commercially successful albums, topping the album charts in six countries.
It was their fifth album in two years to become an international sensation.
Cosmo’s Factory is the sound of a band comfortable with both mainstream radio success and elongated bluesy jams. While it features plenty of radio-friendly rock anthems — such as ‘My Baby Left Me’ and Bo Diddley’s ‘Before You Accuse Me’ — it’s equally known for its extended jams.
Both the album’s 7-minute opener ‘Ramble Tamble’ and its centrepiece, the 11-minute rendition of Marvin Gaye’s ‘I Heard It Through The Grapevine’, spoke to Creedence’s unmistakable rock’n’roll chemistry.
Overall, it’s arguably the best encapsulation of the Creedence sound. There’s R&B and folk-rock effortlessly blending in throughout, especially on ‘Long As I Can See the Light’, which sees the inclusion of piano and saxophone for what’s now an iconic ’70s sound.
That song is a tribute to the Bakersfield Sound, a sub-genre of country music that influenced John Fogerty and Creedence’s direction.
Creedence Clearwater Revival are releasing a 50th anniversary edition of Cosmo’s Factory on August 14th. For the special anniversary edition, engineer Miles Showell remastered the record at half-speed at Abbey Road Studios.
According to Rolling Stone, Showell has used high-res transfers from the original analog tapes and mastered at half-speed. A press release says this “allows more time to cut a micro-precise groove, resulting in more accuracy with frequency extremes and dynamic contrasts.” The brand new version of the album will be released on 180-gram vinyl.
Creedence drummer Doug “Cosmo” Clifford recently spoke to ABC Audio about the record’s milestone anniversary. “There were seven singles on it, if you count [the band’s cover of the Motown classic ‘I Heard It Through the Grapevine,’]” he said. “‘Grapevine’ was a single in the dance world, and then we had the other six. I mean, that’s a lot for anyone.
“I don’t know too many groups that have done it. I guess The Beatles must have done it sometime in their career. Maybe The [Rolling] Stones…Maybe Elvis [Presley]. But it’s an exclusive club to be in.”