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Thread: Tell me more about Camel

  1. #26
    Member Gizmotron's Avatar
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    I have to add that "Fox Hill" is a delightful track and a great contrast to the quieter, introspective songs on "A Nod and a Wink."
    Fox Hill has great energy, tells a fun story, has a great middle section (the chase), and yet, always seems to choke me up at the end due to the sweet lyric.

    The track is quintessential Camel. The combination of energy, beauty, and emotion is a hallmark of their work.

  2. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by interbellum View Post
    Most posters have told you what they think are the best Camel-albums, but what I'm wondering is why you think "The Snow Goose" is amazing?
    I just make a guess that you like the song-cycle, the concept
    Well for me, I really like the compositional coherence of the album. It's an extremely well conceived and executed work that sidesteps much of the bombast and flash of most prog rock of its time. The arrangements both prefigure aspects of what people now refer to as chamber rock and at times recalls the "Baroque rock" sound of 60s bands like The Left Banke, The David and others.
    There's a quiet dignity to this album that's fairly unique for its time and genre, imo.

  3. #28
    A Live Record is one of my favorite live albums. Its a great collection of early Camel with the bonus of the full Snow Goose live. Its hard to top the best of Camel. But that shouldn't limit you in exploring more Camel. There are a lot of great Camel songs interspersed among the albums that follow this one, like Echoes from Breathless, Who We Are and Ice from I Can See Your House From Here, and the two concept albums Nude and Dust and Dreams are excellent as well.

  4. #29
    In all seriousness, I had never heard of Camel until Mikael from Opeth namechecked them in an interview about 10 years ago (or more?). I have just in the last year or so started listening to their musis thanks to Spotify and YouTube. I have their first few CDs on my want list.

  5. #30
    Please spare me the stick for championing "Nude" as Camel's greatest work.

  6. #31
    cunning linguist 3LockBox's Avatar
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    I love various Camel tracks from the early years. I liked a couple of tracks from the Snow Goose but find the album as a whole kinda sleepy. The live versions are only a little less sedate.

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveSly View Post
    I am going to throw out some love for latter day Camel. “Dust And Dreams”, “Harbour Of Tears”, and “Rajaz” are a great 3 album run that IMO ranks right up with their classics. In fact “Harbour” may be my all-time favorite Camel album. The last / most recent one “A Nod And A Wink” is not quite as good, but the album does contain one of the most moving songs Andy has ever written in the closing track “For Today”.
    Agreed with this take but A Nod and a Wink does have a few great tracks. Rajaz has some stellar tunes. Having said that and getting back to the original question... Snow Goose is great, both the live version and studio LP. For that matter the recently re-recorded version is great as well but I think the Live Record version is the best version. I think the version of Never Let Go on the live LP is amazing. It makes every compilation cd I make to get newcomers into prog/fusion. Pete's organ solo is amazing. One of the greatest Live Records period... pun intended!

    Now I was into Camel in the mid 70's and saw them as well at that time but to me Dust and Dreams is every bit as good as anything in the 70's. For those who don't know it was inspired by John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath. Brilliant LP!! That might be a great second or third listen for a newcomer. Harbor of Tears has a special place for me as I am Irish so I may be biased!

    Getting back to the 70's they had a great 4 LP run with Mirage, Snow Goose, Moonmadness and Rain Dances. Rain Dances was different, a new band with the addition of Mel Collins but that LP killed. Can't go wrong with any of these but of the LP's I mentioned the Goose would be in the middle of that pack at least to my taste.
    Last edited by rich; 04-26-2017 at 01:02 AM.

  8. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    So, the question is: Have they done anything else as amazing as "The Snow Goose?"
    Not really. For me it is their best record and the studio version one of the masterpieces from the golden age of prog.

    Mind that "Mirage" and a decent part of "Moonmadness" come close, so consider both, candidates for future acquisition.
    Macht das ohr auf!

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  9. #34
    A live record was my first Camel, and I have to say, I prefer the first disk, especially on de CD-version, over the second one. I rather would hear The snow goose without orchestra.

  10. #35
    I will tell you they are on my bucket list to see live!!!!

  11. #36
    Member Rajaz's Avatar
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    I discovered CAMEL by a mere coincidence in 1977: a friend of mine who also loves Prog, asked me to buy him the Raindances album during a trip I made to the US (we were living in isolated Guatemala). That year I was crazy about Seconds Out and went to NYC to see Led Zeppelin for the first and only time. I brought a few more albums for myself. When I returned, I was curious and borrowed the Camel LP from my friend. Man, I loved it and was hooked ever since, I later bought Breathless (sadly, Pete Bardens last album with Camel). As I continued to buy their complete catalog or should I say Camelog, I never got the chance to see them live. My closest chance to see them live was in 2002 when I even had a ticket and they cancelled their show in Mexico City.

    Highly recommended: NUDE (my all time favorite), Rain Dances, Breathless, Snowgoose (original version) Coming of Age Live, Dust and Dreams, Rajaz of course and Harbor of Tears.
    Good but not essential: Single Factor, I can see your house from here, Stationary Traveler, A Nod is as good as a wink, Camel, Mirage (a fan classic but not my favorite).
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  12. #37
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    The only three Camel LP's I go back to regularly are Mirage, The Snow Goose and Moonmadness.

    Those three are terrific.
    Prog's Not Dead

  13. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by interbellum View Post
    Funny no one has jet mentioned that the album is actually called "A Live Record".

    Most posters have told you what they think are the best Camel-albums, but what I'm wondering is why you think "The Snow Goose" is amazing?
    I just make a guess that you like the song-cycle, the concept, where all songs tell one tale. If so the other album you could try is "Nude", which has more or less the same structure.
    Interesting. While I am very story-oriented, and I assume that there is a story to "The Snow Goose," I have no idea what it is. What I like about it, pretty much in order:
    1) The melodies
    2) The way it fits together as a musical whole despite its divergences and diversions - it is basically a very well done tone poem
    3) The best live integration of rock band and orchestra I have ever heard
    4) The musicality and musicianship

    Thanks for asking!
    National Flat Earth Society: The only thing we have to fear, is sphere itself.

  14. #39
    Wow. Some interesting discussion here. Based on what I'm seeing I'm tempted to pick up The Snow Goose and Nude as my next adventures in this direction...
    National Flat Earth Society: The only thing we have to fear, is sphere itself.

  15. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    Wow. Some interesting discussion here. Based on what I'm seeing I'm tempted to pick up The Snow Goose and Nude as my next adventures in this direction...
    If you like Nude then get "On the Road '81" form the Nude tour. Fantastic!!!!

  16. #41
    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    Wow. Some interesting discussion here. Based on what I'm seeing I'm tempted to pick up The Snow Goose and Nude as my next adventures in this direction...
    I'd definitely grab the studio version of Snow Goose, but I wouldn't personally be too hasty on Nude. Similar to Snow Goose (which is is based on Paul Gallico's book, you can see a plot summary on Wiki if you want), Nude does tell a story. But there, to me, the similarities end. On Nude, there's little integration repetition of themes, no orchestral stuff, and far less musicianship, save in a few sections. It's a nice sort of "Alan Parsons-like" album, very safe, and not really much like the early Camel, imo.

    Obviously opinions on this will differ widely, so I'd encourage you to sample Nude on Youtube or somewhere before shelling out any cash for it. If you found Lunar Sea to be "generic Proggery," I can't imagine you'd be that excited about Nude. But who knows. I'd just encourage trying before you buy, is all.

    Bill

  17. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    While I am very story-oriented, and I assume that there is a story to "The Snow Goose," I have no idea what it is.
    The Snow Goose is a war story, written by Paul Gallico. I just noticed there's an LP on which the story is narrated:

    But of course you can also read the book (or better novel, it's very short): http://www.arvindguptatoys.com/arvin.../snowgoose.pdf

  18. #43
    Member rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3LockBox View Post
    I liked a couple of tracks from the Snow Goose but find the album as a whole kinda sleepy. The live versions are only a little less sedate.
    If by "sleepy" you mean beautiful, melodic, comfortable, soothing, uplifting, gorgeous and familiar, I'd agree with you.

  19. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by Sturgeon's Lawyer View Post
    Wow. Some interesting discussion here. Based on what I'm seeing I'm tempted to pick up The Snow Goose and Nude as my next adventures in this direction...
    I wouldn't advise Nude, unless you don't mind the typical 80s keyboard/drums sound. To my ears they sound horrible and destroy the decent compositions...

    Check below:

    Macht das ohr auf!

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  20. #45
    Member Gizmotron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcarlberg View Post
    If by "sleepy" you mean beautiful, melodic, comfortable, soothing, uplifting, gorgeous and familiar, I'd agree with you.
    I love this post!
    I would add "sublime" to the list of adjectives.

    I think a huge part of the credit goes to Andy Ward. His precise and tasteful drumming perfectly anchors Snow Goose. He adds meaningful punctuation to even the most beautiful and delicate portions of the album. He was such a musical drummer.

  21. #46
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Another thumbs down on Nude here.

  22. #47
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3LockBox View Post
    I love various Camel tracks from the early years. I liked a couple of tracks from the Snow Goose but find the album as a whole kinda sleepy. The live versions are only a little less sedate.
    A sleepy camel is a happy camel. I like Camel's sleepiness.

    The sweet smell of Afghanistan rewards a long day’s toil.

  23. #48
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by interbellum View Post
    The Snow Goose is a war story, written by Paul Gallico. I just noticed there's an LP on which the story is narrated:

    But of course you can also read the book (or better novel, it's very short): http://www.arvindguptatoys.com/arvin.../snowgoose.pdf
    I'm actually not a big fan of the book, but I AM a fan of Paul Gallico - he also wrote The Poseidon Adventure and a lot of other interesting and different books.
    The sweet smell of Afghanistan rewards a long day’s toil.

  24. #49
    Member Gizmotron's Avatar
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    Sleepy camels and "generic proggery."

    Hilarious stuff, kids.

  25. #50
    Member Vic2012's Avatar
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    The only thing I have by Camel is A Compact Compilation. It's pretty good. Haven't played it in 10 years or more. Agree that Andy is a hell of a guitar player. He reminds me of Carlos Santana in some ways.

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