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Camel - A Live Record CD (album) cover

A LIVE RECORD

Camel

 

Symphonic Prog

4.26 | 296 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

friso
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Camel - A Live Record (1978)

The Camel Live album. This really is a threat to fans of the band. On this two-part live album we get one lp with early Camel tracks and one lp with a live version of the Snow Goose, partly with an orchestra. The recording quality is supurb, the sound changes my room into a theater.

Camel plays professional symphonic prog with an emphasis on the instrumental part, though the vocals can get quite intimate. Their melodic, harmonic approach is likable and the technical musicanship is only used in order to make the music even better. The emotional guitars of Latimer are as good as those of Pink Floyd's Gilmour.

Back to this live compilation. The band itself plays very accurate, but as some have already mentioned, it isn't 'on fire'. The Snow Goose is played perfectly in my opinion, but the first halve of this live compilation lacks some energy. I think a lot us would have loved to see the band play a track like Lady Fantasy on the heavy Mirage way. Never let go suffers from a bad solo-section, but the other tracks on the first lp are actually just fine. A professional sounding band playing good compositions, and of course, Lunar Sea sounds amazing. The synths and guitars are great, but the addtional wind section by Collins doesn't fit in the magical environment of this instrumental epic.

The second lp, the Snow Goose live, is the main attraction here. I actually prefer the live version over the already amazing studio recording. The addtion of an orchestra on some tracks works pretty well, accept for Dunkirk in which the orchestra is very unnecesary. But then again, the string sections work very well with the music most of the time. The sound of the bombastic tracks is truly immense!

Conclusion. If you like this band, this is a recommended live album. It might not be perfect and the first halve could have been a bit more energetic, but it's still one of the best progressive live albums from the classic period. The Snow Goose live is a real five star recording and I would give the rest three stars. This makes up for four stars! Fans of modern prog might be better of with the Coming of Age live album, which as a more up to date symphonic sound.

friso | 4/5 |

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