Swamp Rock/Hawaii Five-O

The Ventures

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Swamp Rock/Hawaii Five-O Review

by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

See For Miles reissued two albums the Ventures released in 1969, Hawaii Five-O and Swamp Rock, on a single disc in 1997. The Ventures received their last chance at chart success in 1969, when their theme to the Jack Lord television show Hawaii Five-O. It was one of their great singles, and it was the last time they ever fully captured the power of "Walk -- Don't Run" again. The remainder of the album Hawaii Five-O has its moments, such as the minor hit "Theme from 'A Summer Place'" and good versions of "Galveston" and "Games People Play," but it also has a number of bland or awkward moments, such as "Dizzy" and two separate medleys -- one of hits by the Fifth Dimension, and one of hits by the Classics IV. For most fans, hearing the singles on hits collections is a better bet than this record. Swamp Rock is a better album, but it's not without flaws. The album is the Ventures' attempt to make a set of down-home country and rock using Creedence Clearwater Revival as a template. Two John Fogerty songs, "Green River" and "Proud Mary," are performed on the record, as are Hank Williams' "Jambalaya," Jim Ford's "Niki Hokey (Speedway)," the Stones' "Honky Tonk Women" and Elvis Presley's "Suspicious Minds." Although the group is never quite gritty or greasy enough to make these songs sound like they intended, it's still an entertaining records and one of their more enjoyable efforts of the late '60s.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 The Ventures 02:47 Amazon
2 The Ventures 03:00 Amazon
3 The Ventures 02:34 Amazon
4 The Ventures 02:47 Amazon
5 The Ventures 02:49 Amazon
6 The Ventures 02:29 Amazon
7 The Ventures 02:47 Amazon
8 The Ventures 03:30 Amazon
9 The Ventures 02:27 Amazon
10 The Ventures 02:59 Amazon
11 The Ventures 02:03 Amazon
12 The Ventures 02:23 Amazon
13 The Ventures 01:53 Amazon
14 The Ventures 02:34 Amazon
15 The Ventures 02:44 Amazon
16 The Ventures 02:14 Amazon
17 The Ventures 02:14 Amazon
18 The Ventures 02:18 Amazon
19 The Ventures 04:27 Amazon
20 The Ventures 02:43 Amazon
21 The Ventures 02:50 Amazon
22 The Ventures 02:39 Amazon
23 The Ventures 02:31 Amazon
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