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Camel - Mirage CD (album) cover

MIRAGE

Camel

 

Symphonic Prog

4.38 | 1844 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

progismylife
4 stars The album starts out with a good opener, Freefall. It is a mostly instrumental song, but the lyrics are quite interesting, "I'm in a freefall, like a snowflake falling" the first line of the song and it is my favourite. The singing is adequate and does nothing to detract from the music, but it doesn't really add anything to the song either.

An instrumental song is next, Supertwister. Here Andy Latimer shows his skills on the flute. The rest of the band does a great job in covering the spaces where the guitar might have been, notably Peter Bardens on organ and Doug Ferguson on bass guitar. It makes this a delightful track to listen to. The ending is especially intriguing. It is a short one but fulfils the expectations of a great instrumental.

The middle track is the first epic on the album, Nimrodel / Procession / White Rider clocking in around 9 minutes and a bit. It is about Gandalf, a major character in J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. The music is exceptional; I love the intro to this song with its mysterious feel thanks to Peter Bardens' organ playing. Also Andy Latimer's flute and guitar playing adds another dimension to the music. The lyrics do a great job of conveying the character of Gandalf in the Lord of the Rings. It expresses the thoughts I have about Gandalf while reading the book.

Another instrumental piece takes place here. It has a nice jazzy feel overall. The best part of this song is near the middle during the exchanges between Peter Bardens and Andy Latimer. It is another song that meets and perhaps goes beyond the expectations of an instrumental set by Supertwister.

The final song is the second epic and last song on the album. It is the Lady Fantasy, which is split into 3 parts: Encounter / Smiles For You / Lady Fantasy. It starts off with a heavy-ish guitar riff. Peter Bardens plays a catchy melody on the keyboards. The song gets going right away with a very catchy intro to the first verse. The vocals on this song are at their strongest of the album. This song goes through many changes in tempo, each with a great instrumental section between the singing sections. Andy Latimer shows his ability to express emotion through his guitar and it gets me every time. I cannot help but be moved by the guitar playing. My favourite section of this song is the last 4 minutes. It has a great feel to it. The organ keeps it going and then the song kicks into 5th gear and really gets going. It is a great end for an album.

The remaster version has a few bonus tracks to it: a live version of Supertwister as well as live versions of Mystic Queen and Arubaluba (both from the debut album - the previous one). There is also another take of Lady Fantasy.

There are many great points and highlights of this album; I have only mentioned a few of mine. The musicianship on this album is good and Camel's sound is a lot more defined on this album than it was on the last album. Overall this is a great album to follow up an awesome debut.4/5 stars

progismylife | 4/5 |

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