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Camel - Moonmadness CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.38 | 2152 ratings

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5 stars When looking back at the highly innovative music produced by British bands who emerged in the 1970s, the name Camel is always prominent. Their legacy includes albums such as "Mirage", "Snow Goose" an "Moonmadness" - all of which do much to enhance the reputation of a band who, unlike many of other contemporaries, have survived nearly thirty years in the music business and still demand a loyal and devoted following throughout the world, both in concert and on record. The consistent factor through various line-up changes has been, and continues to be, guitarist and flautist Andrew Latimer. [CD liner notes - quoted without permission].

Yes, I think Camel is similar to King Crimson in terms of evolution of their line up: what ever changes in line-up, the guitarist remains the same and it's the only member that always be there in any album the bands have made. The only difference between these two bands is that in terms of music style consistency. King Crimson underwent fundamental change in their music direction when they reformed and released "Discipline" album. While the music style of Camel remains intact since its inception until now.

For me personally, this album is special as some songs has been around me by the time it was released. The music I can say is melodic with a great combination of keyboard and flute. The album opener "Aristilus" (1:59) explores Peter Bardens keyboard work and set the overall tone of the album, followed with a melancholic and melodic track "Song Within a Song" (6:48) which has become the band's classic and legendary track. The lyrical passage combined with flute is really melodic and reminds me to the seventies era. "Chord Change" (7:18) is also a killer with some jazzy touch exploring Latimer's guitar fills combined with Bardens' keyboard. The music somewhat has similarity with Babe Ruth's. The short track "Spirit of the Water" (2:09) serves like a bridge with an exploration of distant vocal style and keyboard / piano in classical music style.

"Another Night" (7:00) is another killer with an intro that comprises repeated chords of guitar and keyboard followed with vocal line. The music is floating melodic with steady drumbeats. The song has a nice interlude with solid basslines and guitar / keyboard works. "Air Born" (5:04) is a legendary track that begins with flute / piano work in classical music style followed with great music using guitar solo as main melody. When vocal enters the music, it turns out to be a melodic track with great work on flutes and clavinet. Memorable track! The album concludes with "Lunar Sea" (9:14) which its opening reminds me to space rock music like Klaus Schulze's. But what follows is a great guitar solo with layers of keyboard work augmented with solid bass guitar work by Doug Ferguson. Andy Ward who later became Marillion's drummer (for a short period) fills the drum work inventively. Keyboard solo continues the melody and the song experiences some tempo and style changes. It turns into faster tempo with more inventive guitar solo and multi-layer keyboard work. WOW! It's a wonderful track!

It's highly recommended album and is accessible to many ears - prog and even non- prog lovers. You should have it in your collection. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Gatot | 5/5 |


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