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Camel - Moonmadness CD (album) cover

MOONMADNESS

Camel

 

Symphonic Prog

4.38 | 1498 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

thesleeper72
5 stars I know that I am probably the 600th person to say this, but this album is Camel's magnum opus. Moonmadness is not only my favorite Camel album, but one of my favorite albums ever. This is the final album to feature Camel's classic line-up (Andrew Latimer, Peter Bardens, Doug Ferguson, and Andy Ward). They have produced great classics like Mirage and The Snow Goose, but this outshines them both. Thankfully, I was able to get the original cover of this album thankfully (the one that you see on this sight) rather than the strange cover of a camel in an astronaut suit. This album will take a couple of listens in order to fully appreciate it. The album was originally intended to be a compilation of the personality of the band members, as I will mention below

Aristillus is a quirky little synth instrumental that opens the album. Even though this song lasts only a couple of minutes, it is able to hold itself together with the rest of the album.

The next song (Song Within a Song) shows that vocals are not the strong point of the band. However, this does not hurt them in any way since they use it sparingly. The song starts off rather soft and ambient for the first half and then becomes a wonderful jam session in the second half.

Chord Change is an instrumental that shows off the jazz influence of Camel. There really isn't much more to say except that it is one of the highlights of the album. According to the band, this song was supposed to be about Peter Bardens.

Spirit of the Water is a small interlude that is really the most surprising bit on the album. I mentioned that Camel's strong point is not vocals, but this song really uses it well. Peter Bardens piano and Andrew Latimer's flute dominate this song and like Aristillus, this two minute piece is as of much value as the other longer songs.

Another Night is definitely the most "rocking" song on the album. This song is about bassist Doug Ferguson. Another Night reminds me of some of the songs on their debut album such as Slow Yourself Down and Arubaluba.

Air Born (the song about Andrew Latimer) opens up with Andrew's flute, giving the song a feeling as if you're floating on the air. The flute continues to dominate the song and has a spectacular climax.

Lunar Sea (lunacy, get it? haha. Apparently this song is about drummer Andy Ward) is the highlight of the album. Opening with Peter Barden's spacey synth's, it follows with Doug and Andy bass and drums, and then Andrew Latimer gives us a wonderful jazz influenced guitar solo. The song then transform into what Camel does best; a duel between Andrew's guitar and Peter's keyboards.

Sadly, this group and album are rather underrated when compared to other prog-rock brethren like Pink Floyd, Genesis, or Yes. However, I find Camel to be just as good as these bands. If you enjoy these groups and if you enjoy jazz, you will definitely enjoy Moonmadness and Camel's other opus'

thesleeper72 | 5/5 |

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