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Camel - Camel CD (album) cover

CAMEL

Camel

 

Symphonic Prog

3.94 | 898 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Fight Club
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Camel is one of my favorite 70s prog acts. This is an impressive album in a number of aspects. The guitar playing is top notch. I've always loved Latimers guitar work. It's very delicate, very melodic, and very well integrated into the band's sound. The overall sound of the album is something somewhat new for the time. It's hard to tell who their influences really are, which one thing that makes the band so unique. Anyways, let's talk about the great things in this album.

Musicianship is excellent. All the instruments are played to their fullest here. The songwriting is also great. It's mostly guitar and organ driven which is what makes it standout in standard symphonic prog. There's somewhat of a canterbury style influence in this without quite being canterbury. If I could think of any genre to put this band in it would be symphonic jazz. However where jazz, is very technical, this album relies more on feeling. It's not as strong as some of Camel's other albums, Mirage and The Snow Goose, but it is still a superb effort.

The main complaint I have is the vocals. Vocals have never been a strong part of Camel in my opinion, and I have always seen them as more instrumental, which is why The Snow Goose is my favorite album by them. Even when there is singing involved, it seems to slip right passed, serving almost no purpose in the overall sound. The album is also somewhat inconsistent, and feels more like just a collection of songs rather than a full adventure.

Make no mistake, however, Camel's debut is still an excellent album. It's filled with great melodies, great musicianship and of course the signature flute sound we love if you've ever heard their other works! However, the inconsistencies and vocal work compels me to bump this albums rating down a star. Not a masterpiece, but nonetheless a great addition to any prog music collection.

Fight Club | 4/5 |

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