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Camel - The Snow Goose CD (album) cover

THE SNOW GOOSE

Camel

 

Symphonic Prog

4.27 | 1526 ratings

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Trotsky
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars I'm a Camel fan and The Snow Goose is widely believed to be among the group's greatest works. As a record that almost cracked the UK Top 20, it certainly was among their most successful ventures. I guess that's why I feel I'm missing something because I've always thought that this particular album was quite overrated.

Now don't get me wrong ... I'm not disregarding the whole album, which was composed by flautist/guitarist Andy Latimer and keyboardist Peter Bardens, and inpsired by Paul Gallico's novella The Snow Goose. I do think that this wholly instrumental work does have its highlights. For a start In the brilliant flute-driven Rhayader, Camel have one of their finest songs ever (a sort of sister piece to Mirage's Supertwister). The offbeat, vaguely funky Rhayader Goes To Town, the intriguing pastoral guitar meets distorted synth number Fritha, the oh-so Canterbury (right down to the wordless vocal) Migration and the eerie Dunkirk also provide enjoyable moments for me.

But the fact remains (and I still feel that this is rather heretical!) that I frequently find this album boring! Yes, listening to it at one sitting is more of a chore than a joy, and that should never be. Perhaps one factor is that too many of the compositions are laidback and mellow and the rhythm section of Ferguson and Ward seem to spend too long on the sidelines. I also think there's just a little too much use of the orchestra which is something that a self-contained entity like Camel didn't really need. I swear when the whole band burst into some vintage Camel on the penultimate track La Princesse Perdue, it was like the second coming!

Ultimately, of Camel's first six studio albums, this is the one I turn to the least. ... 58% on the MPV scale

Trotsky | 3/5 |

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