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CURRICULUM VITAE

Camel

Symphonic Prog


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2 stars I was very enthusiastic when I first got this as a present, because here in Guatemala prog DVDs aren't very common to find. I expected that this would be a DVD made of live performances from all eras of Camel. In a way, I got what I expected

There are live performances from all the eras, but this DVD is mainly made of interviews. There is a lot of interesting information, like anecdotes, reasons for line-up changes and reviews of the albums. Nonetheless, the live performances are cut by the interviews. That isn't a pleasant thing to watch at all.

The bonus footage is an interview with "The Brew", which consists of Andrew Latimer, Doug Ferguson and Andy Ward. They talk of making a new record that would have been out on late 2003, but it never happened. That would have been interesting, though.

The DVD comes with a very informative booklet where one can find short biographies from all the members that have been involved in Camel.

Anyway, since the value of the live performances is kind of low, I'd say this a DVD for fans only. I, as a fan, enjoy this DVD very much.

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Send comments to RaślGuate (BETA) | Report this review (#95701)
Posted Wednesday, October 25, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars Rating this kind of a release is a tricky business, since as a story about the history of Camel this is strictly a collectors/fans only release, but as such at least a really really good one. The story is told mainly by the original foursome of Latimer, Bardens, Ward and Ferguson and cut between the interviews are short clips of live performances. One might find it frustrating to see the songs faded out midway through, but since I already own pretty much all the performances on other dvd's it doesn't bother me at all. And I think the story is held together better with no seven minute pauses after each sentence.

Even for a fan quite familiar with the origins of the band this was a very educating programme to watch, since there's a lot of never before heard (at least with these ears) stuff about the forming of the group and the many line up changes, including Andy Ward's recollections on his on tour problems and the subsequent suicide attempt and departure. The only real problem with this dvd is its short lenght, causing for example the newer albums being passed by with a sentence or two. The reason for this is that the program was originally made as a short TV production, and later expanded by Camel Productions for this dvd release. The bonus footage consists of a very entertaining brand new interview with the Brew trio of Latimer, Ferguson and Ward, taped during the recording of their since abandoned or shelved Brew album.

Despite its short length and the resulting quick speeding through some topics this is an excellent and very recommended release, for fans only though. Triple the duration and I'll give it five stars.

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Send comments to Pekka (BETA) | Report this review (#109817)
Posted Tuesday, January 30, 2007 | Review Permalink
SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Team
3 stars From first light to friendship to lies to hopeless anger and back again

This is a rather conventional rockumentary (or should I say "Prockumentary"?) telling the story of Camel from their pre-Camel roots in the late 60's to their inception in the early 70's trough their decline in the late 70's/early 80's to their comeback in the 90's and further into the new millennium. Every studio album is commented on in chronological order, primarily by Andy Latimer and Andy Ward, in between some extracts from live performances from the period under display. Peter Bardens is also featured but he sadly past away before this DVD was released. There is a tribute to Bardens at the end of the film.

Interestingly, but perhaps not very surprisingly, the band members seems to have the same favourite albums as I have. The first four, particularly Mirage, The Snow Goose and Moonmadness are praised as well as Nude from the 80's and the comeback albums Dust And Dreams and Harbour Of Tears from the 90's. It is interesting to hear the members' opinions and anecdotes from the relevant periods.

Being a documentary this is mostly of interest for the fans of the band. Those same fans will most certainly already know most or even all of the facts about the band that are presented here, but it is still nice to see a film telling the story of one of the greatest progressive Rock bands of all time.

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Send comments to SouthSideoftheSky (BETA) | Report this review (#275616)
Posted Tuesday, March 30, 2010 | Review Permalink
lor68
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Ok, take it as an historical documentary, regarding the first era by Camel (in the sixties, when Peter Bardens settled the roots of melodic prog music) and the second one in the late seventies/early eighties, when the AOR and commercial sound was unfortunately predominant in the production of Andy Latimer & company... well the restoration of the eary nineties (period regarding "Dust and dreams" and that unique era of Harbour Tears, with the exception of "Hopeless Anger" and "Hour candle", where Andy Latimer is fantastic), is not witnessed by any interview or film concert (do you remember the remarkable "Coming of Age" live-album, for instance?) and I don't understand why!! Nevertheless as a tribute to the memory of P. Bardens I'm glad, cause He's worth to be honoured like one of the most important keyboard and Organ player during more of twenty years and "The Snow Goose Era" along with the most successful hits stand still like some of the best prog memories, to be celebrated right now!! At the end "Fox Hill", the most amusing moment of "A Nod and a Wink", with a typical sound of the early Genesis, is very advisable in order to conclude the DVD Tribute in the best manner!!

Long Live Camel...but the present documentary (dated 2003) is essential for the fanatics or the long time fans of the band only!

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Send comments to lor68 (BETA) | Report this review (#279225)
Posted Saturday, April 24, 2010 | Review Permalink
friso
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Camel - Curriculum Vitae (2003)

It's nice to have seen a doc about the history of this amazing band. It's interesting to get an inside view by (ex-)members telling their stories. The movie tells the story from the beginning of the band untill the beginning of the 21th century. The footage presented is nice, but there are no complete songs. The production of the doc is good and the questions of the interviewers are interesting.

But what do you do with your dvd if you've seen this doc once, perhaps twice if you really want to suck up the information? This document would have been more important if all complete songs from the footage used was presented as an extra. The track-listing would have been quite interesting and the historical value big. But sadly this is only a doc with short parts of songs.

Conclusion. This is for fans of the band. An interesting film, but it has no replay-value. Two stars, a good document for fans. It did gave me a good feeling afterwards, knowing these records you have in your collection all have a history of lot's of people involved with own stories. Music is so much more then only sound... it's an enterprise.

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Send comments to friso (BETA) | Report this review (#290521)
Posted Friday, July 16, 2010 | Review Permalink
AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Team
3 stars This is a real gift for Camel fans, showing the way that the band became one of the best Canterbury Symph bands of all time. It goes into detail about musical directions and interviews the members about all of the albums that made them prog mega legends. It is nice to hear from Latimer and Ward and the whole documentary is dedicated to the memory of Bardens.

The big albums that every fan salivates over are given fair treatment, namely Mirage, The Snow Goose and Moonmadness. We hear about the 80s triumphs in Nude, and also attention is drawn to Dust And Dreams and Harbour Of Tears that showed that there was still life in the band during the difficult 90's.

This may not appeal to the average music fan, but to Camel addicts it is a must. Like all documentaries it is worth viewing at least once but then loses value. Any Camel on DVD though is terrific so I give it 3 stars. Coming of Age is way better, a full concert, and should be recommended over this.

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Send comments to AtomicCrimsonRush (BETA) | Report this review (#395783)
Posted Monday, February 07, 2011 | Review Permalink

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