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Camel Live

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Topic: Camel Live
Posted By: Anthe
Subject: Camel Live
Date Posted: January 14 2009 at 04:39

Hi all

 

As I may have already said somewhere here, I just recently re-discovered Camel. I am totally fascinated by the live performances that I found on Youtube. I also found some of my cd’s back, I found some of their albums on Deezer and best of all, I bought the dvd’s Pressure Points and Moondances and Coming of Age is on its way (I hope). And I just can not stop listening to their music.

 

I started a weblog where I uploaded many of the Youtube videos and now I want to start another weblog where I will try to describe my perception of the music. I was never very good at that, so I was more than happy with all the reactions on Youtube and on Prog Archives where I found many reviews of the albums. It give me so much insight into my own feelings about the music.

 

On this new weblog, I want to focus on 3 of their concerts and the Youtube videos I found from them. And I would love it to read what you all think about each video, album and concert, as a comment on my blog or here on this forum.

 

http://www.camellive.com/2009/01/the-story-of-the-snow-goose/ - http://www.camellive.com/2009/01/the-story-of-the-snow-goose

 

My first post is about the Snow Goose, the music of Camel combined with the story of Paul Gallico, which I wrote a few weeks ago. I uploaded it as a start and will copy it here. 

 

 

Music by Camel, based on The Snow Goose by Paul Gallico.

 

The Great Marsh starts with bird sounds and softly the music sets in. In the background there is the repeating sound of female vocals and occasionally there is the highlighting of a guitar. Then the pressure goes up, the drums enter and it becomes a coherent setting for the story to take place. 

 

...the ocean cut through the sodden land that seems to rise and fall and breathe with the recurrence of the the daily tides. It is desolate, utterly lonely, and made lonelier by the calls and cries of the wildfowl that make their homes in the marshlands and saltings ...

 

Part 1

Rhayader is the introduction of the main character. His introduction is rather sensitive with the sound of a flute, but soon gets a firm grounding with the drums and keyboard, while the tambourine gives it a light and dancing touch. And it ends again with the sensitive flute in a repeating rhythm.

 

...his heart was filled with pity and understanding. He mastered his handicap, but he could not master the rebuffs he suffered, due to his appearance. The thing that drove him into seclusion was his failure to find anywhere a return of the warmth that flowed from him...

 

But then, with the start of Rhayader goes to town, there is a remarkable change. The drums make a determined statement and the guitar comes in very strong.

 

...he was twenty-seven when he came to the Great Marsh. He had travelled much and fought valiantly before he made the decision to withdraw from a world in which he could not take part as other men. For all the artist's sensitivity and woman's tenderness locked in his barrel breast, he was very much a man...

 

This is made very clear by the drums, keyboard and guitars, while they express the powerful spirit of Rhayader. Then the music changes again and while still holding this power, it starts to move. It sounds like a strong and determined walk as he goes to town. But in that movement he looses his power bit by bit, and takes him out of his centre.

 

And so he returns to his sanctuary, which he build for the birds but which he needs himself just as much. The story describes that he has a safe place for all hunted creatures.

 

... this made Rhayader happy, because he knew that implanted somewhere in their beings was the germ knowledge, of his existence and his safe haven, that this knowledge had become a part of them and, with the coming of the grey skies and the winds from the north, would send them unerringly back to him...

 

Sanctuary is a very balanced guitar piece, the plucking of the strings that give a basic ground and the space to express the guitar.

 

So in this self created sanctuary, where he can embody his spirit by developing his skills of painting and managing his boat, he, one day gets a visitor, and Fritha enters.

 

... desperately frightened of the ugly man she had come to see, for legend had already begun to gather about Rhayader, and the native wild-fowlers hated him for interfering with their sport. But greater than her fear was the need of that which she bore. For locked in her child's heart was the knowledge, picked up somewhere in the swamp-land, that this ogre who lived in the lighthouse had magic that could heal injured things. She had never seen Rhayader before and was close to fleeing in panic at the dark apparition that appeared at the studio door...

 

This is expressed by the music which gives the feeling of something that will disappear with the slightest movement.

 

And then there is another change as The Snow Goose starts and the guitar is showing it's most amazing moves.

 

...he told her the most wonderful story. The bird was a young one, no more than a year old. She was born in a northern land far, far across the seas, a land belonging to England. Flying to the south to escape the snow and ice and bitter cold, a great storm had seized her and whirled and buffeted her about. It was a truly terrible storm, stronger than her great wings, stronger than anything. For days and nights it held her in its grip and there was nothing she could do but fly before it. When finally it had blown itself out and her sure instincts took her south again, she was over a different land and surrounded by strange birds that she had never seen before. At last, exhausted by her ordeal, she had sunk to rest in a friendly green marsh, only to be met by the blast from the hunter's gun. A bitter reception for a visiting princess, concluded Rhayader. We will call her La Princesse Perdue, the lost princess...

 

Part 2

This is the part that bears the essence of the story, but it is the part that is least played in live concerts. There are probably several reasons for that, like the use of wind instruments (Friendship) the non lyric-vocals (Migration) and the use of female voices (Preparation), which are not the regular ingredients of a rock band. And also does this part not so much have the brilliant and active guitar performances that are present in part one (Rhayader goes to town and The Snow Goose) and in part three (Dunkirk and La Princesse Perdue).

 

This part is much more like the Adagio in a classical symphony. It is more contemplative, the phase of reception instead of action. Part one and three are the active parts, part one in the way of a creative self-expression and part three expressing developed talents for the sake of a bigger whole.

 

But here, in part two, there is the need of another person, the other who reflects, but who also makes aware of the connection with the world again.

With Friendship there is a feeling of getting to know each other, which is reflected by the wind instruments that show the exchange of energy.

 

...they sailed together in his speedy boat, that he handled so skillfully. They caught wildfowl for the ever-increasing colony, and build new pens and enclosure for them. From him she learned the lore of every wild bird, from gull to gyrfalcon, that flew the marshes. She cooked for him sometimes, and even learned to mix his paints...

 

Then Migration very much gives the feeling of nature runs its course. The non lyric vocals make it sound rather unaware and just following the natural instinctive circle of life.

 

With Rhayader alone there is the feeling of accepting and sadness with the soft keyboard and sensitive guitar expressing his loneliness.

 

...and Rhayader was heartbroken. All things seemed to have ended for him. He painted furiously through the winter and the next summer, and never once saw the child...

 

Here arises the awareness for Rhayader in Flight of the Snow Goose and the reconnection with his soul is expressed by the sound of water and female vocals in Preparation.

 

But at the same time this moment brings fear for Fritha, because she does not understand the power yet.

 

... and Fritha was suddenly conscious of the fact that she was frightened, and the things that frightened her were in Rhayader's eyes - the longing and the loneliness and the deep, welling, unspoken things that lay in and behind them as he turned them upon her. His last words were repeating themselves in her head as though he had said them again: this is her home now - of her own free will. The delicate tendrils of her instincts reached to him and carried to her the message of the unspoken things between them. The woman in her bade her take flight from something that she was not yet capable of understanding...

 

Part 3

Part three starts with action again, but the difference with part one is that the action is conscious now. It is the action that is the result of the realisation of having a free will. A will to choose which direction to move the power. Not to let it be a destructive or dominating force, but to use it in a serving way. This awareness came over him while he watched the snow goose return.

 

And so he decides to act and use his developed sailing skills to save as many men as he can in the battle at Dunkirk. It came upon him in excitement, but as he sees the fear in Fritha's eyes, he explains it to her so she can understand his desire to fulfil his mission.

 

...they are lost and stormdriven and harried, like the Princesse Perdue you found and brought to me out of the marches many years ago, and we healed her. They need help, my dear, as our wild creatures have needed help, and that is why I must go. It is something that I can do. Yes, I can. For once - for once I can be a man and play my part...

 

This is beautiful expressed in Dunkirk, which start off as a very determined active ongoing movement, which gives the feeling of something inevitable to happen. And now the strong spirit of Rhayader is capable of acting but also reacting within the same movement. During the battle he can stay in his own power, and at the same time do what is needed. And it only increases the power. This is brilliantly shown by the guitar and drums near the end.

 

He can immediately react upon what happens and save many lives. And with the snow goose flying above his boat it becomes an impressive story, to be told by many.

 

But Rhayader will never return, as he dies in the battle.

 

...when we turned our attention to the derelict again, the boat was gone. Sunk. Concussion, you know. Chap with her. He must have been lashed to her. The bird had gone up and was circling. Three times, like a plane saluting. Dashed queer feeling. Then she flew off to the west...

 

In Epitaph the feeling returns as in 'Preparation' but now as a memory for the heroic act of Rhayader. Who just followed his strong drive to act in the knowledge of a world beyond his individual being.

 

In the meantime Fritha is waiting, roaming through the lighthouse. This is translated with a silent piano tune Fritha alone.

 

... she found the picture that Rhayader had painted of her from memory so many years ago, when she was still a child, and had stood, windblown and timid, at his threshold, hugging and injured bird to her.The picture and the things she saw in it stirred her as nothing ever had before, for much of Rhayader's soul had gone into it...

 

But deep within, she knows that she will never see him again, and becomes aware of her love for him as she watches the snow goose fly.

 

...the sight, the sound, and the solitude surrounding broke the dam within her and released the surging, overwhelming truth of her love, let it well forth in tears. Wild spirit called to wild spirit, and she seemed to be flying with the great bird, soaring with it in the evening sky and hearkening to Rhayader's message. Sky and earth were trembling with it and filled her beyond the bearing of it...

 

La Princesse Perdue which, after a while, reminds of 'The Snow Goose', is a very melancholic goodbye on the guitar and a coming together of two souls.

 

...watching it, Fritha saw no longer the snow goose but the soul of Rhayader taking farewell of her before departing for ever...

 

Finally the lighthouse is blown away by accident and the sea has taken over again, shown at the end in The Great Marsh.

 

...the sea had moved in through the breached walls and covered it over. Nothing was left to break the utter desolation. No marsh fowl had dared to return. Only the frightless gulls wheeled and soared and mewed their plaint over the place where it had been...

 




Replies:
Posted By: martinprog77
Date Posted: January 15 2009 at 03:04
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-------------
Nothing can last
there are no second chances.
Never give a day away.
Always live for today.




Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 16 2009 at 05:35
Embarrassed 
 
I don't know how it exactly works with the emoticons, but this is me blushing!


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 19 2009 at 06:04

My next blogpost is about the video The White Rider. Before I started I read through al the reviews about the album Mirage, which was a great way of finding out what others thought of it. I really like the way some can express their impression and it helped me a lot to order my own thoughts.

 

Comments are more than welcome. I am not adding the blog to the blogcommunities yet, as I am still searching for a way to continue, so any feedback is very much appreciated. 

 

http://www.camellive.com/2009/01/expression-of-the-self/ - http://www.camellive.com/2009/01/expression-of-the-self/ http://www.camellive.com/?p=953 -

 

Expression of the self

The video I want to start with is The White Rider, which is originally on the album Mirage. Mirage is the album of 1974 and it was the second album of Camel as a group. I like it a lot as a whole but it was not my favourite in the time I was listening to their music the most.

And as I am finding out now it especially had to do with the White Rider (officially Nimrodel, the Procession, the White Rider). Not that I did not like that one, I always liked it a lot. The beginning, very spacy and atmospheric, great, I like that. Then the more determined marching feeling it gives which I also very much enjoy listening to. Increasing and increasing and than wow, the guitar, just amazing. I just like it so very much. And then a sort of melancholic continuing.

Next is the start of the lyrics. While reading a lot of reviews of that album these last few day, it became clear that most consider those not the best part of Camel. So I tried to figure out what I thought of them. Some called them boring, while others called them effective but not to exciting. I kind of agree with that. Somehow Latimers voice gives me the feeling of  ‘okay someone has to sing here’, but it is not the way he expresses his emotion.

There were a lot of reviewers who liked the way he played the flute, who were very charmed by the second song on the album, Supertwister. Well, I must say I personally like the way he plays the pan flute in Stationary Traveller. It is a very sensitive, but at the same time strong and genuine sound, it moves me a lot. But even there the feeling of movement is largely increasing if he starts with the guitar again. Just breathtaking, every time I hear that.

So when the lyrics start in The White Rider, that is certainly not the part I like the least. Especially here I find it most effective and grounding the spacey feeling. And right after that of course the guitar again.
Then everything almost comes to a stop, with a very subtle but at the same time effective drums. The next few minutes are not especially my favourite, but I do like them. The speed and energetic going on is exciting anyway.

Then the lyrics start again and were never very special to me before, but got that when I looked at the video. He sings ‘He has a certain air, as if he’s never there, but somehow far away’. He is singing of Gandalf here, but to me it is the feeling he gives himself.

On the dvd Moondances The White Rider is the first song and until this moment it all gives the impression of beautiful music, coming from another world. And so far I like the song, it would have always been one of my favourites I think.

But then, about 2 minutes before the end it starts. It is the part I am very fascinated about now, but that was not always like that. And I noticed I am not alone in that. Although there are many who find the last part exciting, there are also a lot who find it very annoying. When I was playing the dvd at home, most reactions on the whole of this concert where very positive as everyone likes it a lot. But with the last few minutes of The White Rider everyone gets irritated. But for me the more I heard it, the more interesting it got. You see Latimer start doing all kinds of things with his guitar and you get curious what is going on. And than he starts and it really is fascinating.

It is as if indeed before that ‘he was not really there, but somehow far away’ but with this part he very much gives the impression of having found a way of expressing himself with the guitar. Still searching for different ways to do that and at a point of  ‘the more extensions the better’ but very much finding an individual way of expressing himself.

And after a search through classical music for several years, that, I know now, was what I missed there. No matter how much I like a lot of classical music, it always stays within a certain frame. And there is little room for self expression. Which can be a good thing. Most of the time I am more than happy if the performer keeps himself out of the way and tries to express the music how it was meant to be. But for me, there was a certain point where I started to miss the self expression of the performer.

But here it gets dangerous. Here the interpretation of the performer comes in and may be totally different from how the music was intended. Which might be fine in itself, but as a listener you often get the feeling it is not what it was meant to be, it feels overacted. As if you are not hearing the real thing. It is like some children are freaked out by clowns. They somehow feel the real person behind the mask and get confused. That is what I often felt with classical music. But that does not take away the immense pleasure, if it did sound as I felt was genuine. And if it did, I just had to listen to that over and over again.

But the beauty of modern music is, that it is sometimes performed by those who composed it. So that very much gives the freedom to experiment with your own compositions. And they might only get better. Which I think is very much the case with the music of Camel, the progression of each song through time. Although this concert on the dvd Moondances already is a highlight as a whole.

And beyond that there always is the feeling of cooperation within the band, very stressful at times, but somehow always the coming together of very authentic individuals.



Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 20 2009 at 03:19
I can greatly apreciate your thoughts. Its really nice to read....and you can clearly see that the music of Camel moved you deeply. I guess (I cannot speak for all of us, but alteast for people that I know) that this is the effect Camel has on many many people. So I think I can tell you......that.....you are not alone.....
 
I shall tell you my Camel story....It was back in 1993 that a new cd store opened in the town I grew up in NL. The first day I decide to have a look and the owner and I began extremely good friends, and eventually I basically began to run that store for her.....But in the beginning I only was a good costumer. She apreached me cos I was wearing (Im not sure anymore which) a Prog related T-shirt, and she commented me on that. It appears she was an enormous Gabriel, Marillion and Pink Floyd fan. So we talked for a long time. She proposed I should go through the progressive rock collection and listen to it.....get used to it...and tell her what I thought....for months this was how I spend my saturdays....On one of the first days she gave me Never Lety Go (from the D&D tour) that was just released back then, but quite hard to get....and very expensive. She advised me to have a try....as she attended that concert that was on that cd and was totally blown away by it......I still remember how I put that first song on Never Let go....a semi-accoustic version, and then the electric guitar kicks in....I realised that only in Rothery, Gilmour and Hackett I heard a playing that was so moving and was piercing through your heart so deeply. So I brought the cd.....and got completely hooked......and must have played it a 1000 times or more.  I was about to discover so much more great stuff....Ice, and ultimatly Lady Fantasy.....From there I moved to Stationarry Traveller, Pressure Points, Nude, and eventuually the rest....through my cousin who owned must of the other albums, saw Camel even on the ST tour....he was a member of our team..as a Radio crew for a local radio prgram that was dedicated to progessive rock.....and was called 'The Musical Box'.  By then it was about time that Camel was releasing his next studio album Harbour Of Tears..............
 
When it came in, in the store I was working...It was a very very cold winter..lots of snow....and when the deliverer left I opened the crate....put it on.....the player...and once again was completely blown of my socks. What an enormous guitarsound in that second track..........truly...truly......awsome...I called my friend and told him to hold on...cos I had something that he should hear..so I razed the horn, putted the music on a bit louder and.....let him listen.......till this day he still seaks about this and (even on the phone, it blew him away completely). We kept on...listening other songs.....often added Camel songs in our playlist.....and many made it to Classic of the week, such as Nimrodel, Lady Fantasy, Never Let Go, Ice and pieces of the Snow Goose.
 
Eventually Camel went on tour......and I went to the show in Utrecht.....what a night. 165 minutes of pure euphoria.......an integral version of Harbour Of Tears and before and after all the classics (more than is on Coming Of Age, as atleast 2 songs from Snowgoose, Never Let Go and Lady Fantasy are missing) were played with a passion and a dedication that I had only seen a few times before that. As this was not enough yet I had the honour of meeting Latimer after the show, as he just walked out of his dressingroom to chat with his fans.....such an enormously nice guy...really. I signed a few cd's..and we took pictures together, really cool. On the Rajaz tour....I saw them again....once again (even while Latimer was not allowed to sing) still an amazing concert. Especially since this time they had added songs of ST and the version of Lady Fantasy with the extended Hamond Solo is now legendary....as can be heard on the Paris Collection...Too bad only I didn't Latimer again....
 
However...on the Outcast Of An Island (also a really good album) Tour I meet Colin several times....and when he was playing close to where I live we just were about to do our 200th broadcast....and he and Dave Stewart decide to come over to our studio and they recorded the whole 2 hour show with us together....He opened the show himself.....played a few songs live, like Denpasar Moon and did a lot of talking in between, very very nice.
 
Unfortunatly Camel went on tour after that only once....and I didn't even know it....it was not untill much later that I founded that out....and now......a tour is something I think that will never happen......not to mention a new album......


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 20 2009 at 13:23

"this is the effect Camel has on many many people"

It is so great to hear that other people also get moved so deeply. There are more people that I know that like their music a lot, but they are not as obsessed as I am. At least that is how it feels right now. For that you have to be on a music forum I guess.

"Never Lety Go (from the D&D tour)"

I heard others say indeed that is the best performance of Never let go. I will have to search for that too then. Exciting actually, that I know so much of them already and still there is so much more I do not know yet. Like with the performance of Ice. I like it on the album, I must have heard it many times, but when I heard the version of the '97 tour on Youtube, I was totally disturbed. Unbelievable that music can do that, it really moves me so.

"piercing through your heart so deeply"

Yes, piercing through my heart!

"So I brought the cd.....and got completely hooked"

And hooked indeed.

"and must have played it a 1000 times or more"

Okay, you win, that is indeed a whole lot. But so glad I am not the only one who listens to some music so many times.

"through my cousin who owned must of the other albums, saw Camel even on the ST tour"

I saw them there too. It had such an impression on me. The whole sphere had something that I could not describe, unescapable or something like that, totally overwhelming. And hearing the dvd again a few weeks ago, brought very much back that feeling. But still it was different from hearing Ice. And also different from hearing Lady Fantasy from the dvd Moondances. I am trying to get the differences clear for myself by writing about it, trying to understand it.

"What an enormous guitarsound in that second track..........truly...truly......awsome"

I looked to find what was the second track on there, was that Hymn to Her? Because indeed there I also was so very much surprised by the sound of that guitar when I found that on Youtube. I never had that so much with the song on the album, but here the guitar again was so very moving.

"what a night. 165 minutes of pure euphoria"

Wow, would I have wanted to be there!

"were played with a passion and a dedication"

Yes, passion and dedication, are indeed words to use. Thank you so much for sharing your story, so good to hear others who are that fascinated about their music!




Posted By: Chris S
Date Posted: January 21 2009 at 03:32
Originally posted by Anthe Anthe wrote:

"this is the effect Camel has on many many people"

It is so great to hear that other people also get moved so deeply. There are more people that I know that like their music a lot, but they are not as obsessed as I am. At least that is how it feels right now. For that you have to be on a music forum I guess.

"Never Lety Go (from the D&D tour)"

I heard others say indeed that is the best performance of Never let go. I will have to search for that too then. Exciting actually, that I know so much of them already and still there is so much more I do not know yet. Like with the performance of Ice. I like it on the album, I must have heard it many times, but when I heard the version of the '97 tour on Youtube, I was totally disturbed. Unbelievable that music can do that, it really moves me so.

"piercing through your heart so deeply"

Yes, piercing through my heart!

"So I brought the cd.....and got completely hooked"

And hooked indeed.

"and must have played it a 1000 times or more"

Okay, you win, that is indeed a whole lot. But so glad I am not the only one who listens to some music so many times.

"through my cousin who owned must of the other albums, saw Camel even on the ST tour"

I saw them there too. It had such an impression on me. The whole sphere had something that I could not describe, unescapable or something like that, totally overwhelming. And hearing the dvd again a few weeks ago, brought very much back that feeling. But still it was different from hearing Ice. And also different from hearing Lady Fantasy from the dvd Moondances. I am trying to get the differences clear for myself by writing about it, trying to understand it.

"What an enormous guitarsound in that second track..........truly...truly......awsome"

I looked to find what was the second track on there, was that Hymn to Her? Because indeed there I also was so very much surprised by the sound of that guitar when I found that on Youtube. I never had that so much with the song on the album, but here the guitar again was so very moving.

"what a night. 165 minutes of pure euphoria"

Wow, would I have wanted to be there!

"were played with a passion and a dedication"

Yes, passion and dedication, are indeed words to use. Thank you so much for sharing your story, so good to hear others who are that fascinated about their music!


 
It is fantastic to see such passion for Camel, whether it being live or studio material, recognising such an important band in the history of prog in this way makes for some great reading. Keep up on sharing your great insight....now I must track down a good live version of Airborn to watch.


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<font color=Brown>Music - The Sound Librarian

...As I venture through the slipstream, between the viaducts in your dreams...[/COLOR]


Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 21 2009 at 04:27
when I saw your add and read it all through.....I could only do one thing.....put on a Camel CD and listen to it. So I putted on Mirage.....remains one of my favorites for sure.
 
The song on Harbour Of Tear with the blasting guitar is the second song on Harbour Of Tears, first Irish Air....that beautifull vocals and then Irish Air (instrumental) a flute...and then the roaring guitar is blasting around you ears...just out of the blue....what an experience.......But when I listened to it.....the entire album is full of amazing guitarwork.....And Listen to Watching The Bobbins....for example...That bridge....so amazing.....But the vocals are also so beautifull on this album....Like Eyes Of Ireland......And I like the duo vocals that Andy and Colin do together like in Send Home The Slates.....so beautifull, so touching.  
 
I guess Andrew is using alot of Lower G in his guitar, and holds them on.....very long....Hmmm I was so overwelmed that I even forget to pay attention to this on the concerts....and I didn't ask him when I meet him....Too bad.
 
Im happy that you saw Camel live....for a moment I had the feeling you just discovered Camel and missed them out. My boss/friend always told me...Listening to Camel on CD is one thing....seeing them live is even more overwelming....and she was so right....I was hooked to their albums but after I saw them live, especially the first time....I needed to recover for months.....Not very much bands ever had this feeling on me....Perhaps only Roger Waters in 2002 (it was just to much for me to see the master perform all of this songs in a show that was pushing near the 3 hours) or Anekdoten, cos it was the first time I ever saw a band perform with a Mellotron on stage....and I had to wait so long to see them, finally.
 
The version of Never Let Go on Never Let Go is indeed very good. I didn't know many people regard as the best version that is around. I can only say that I saw them performing Never Let Go 2 times in its normal way.....Like it was recorded (I think also on On The Road 81) on the album back then...and I always thought this version is amazing too. However the NLG version is different and the guitar is more spectaculair, or atleast thats how it sounds because the first part is accoustic, so that it emphasis the electric guitar solo more because of the first accoustic part....when its chanching...and keyboards are building up.....its beautifully buidling up to a climax, then the guitar kicks in and evetually the drums........Yes, really amazing too, but it always gave me a bit of the feeling that it are 2 seperate songs in this version. But Andy's guitarplaying is so amazing in this version, especially near the end.....and so fast...and can you imagine that this was the first song I ever heard of them ?
 
About playing it a 1000 times, I must tell you that I had to change Never Let Go....to an new version after a few years cos the cd was played too many times, took it to too many places....
 
As musicians.......I think Camel is highly underestimated...especially Andy as a guitarplayer.....People always praise Gilmour for his sound, but Andrew's sound is much simular but too bad its not so known outside of Prog Circles. People around the world hail the end part of Comfortably Numb, but perhaps a very simular kind of solo Ice, is much better....and indeed when I heard that I also thought....how in all heaven can there be players that can do that........but they did...and thank God atleast in within Prog Circles Ice is standing out as one of the hallmarks of guitarplaying.
 
Personally I only regretted one thing.....and that is the departure of Mickey Simmonds. Just as with his work with Fish (everytime Fish is recording an album with him, its a full house...not to mention the tours he joined Fish....and turned around old Marillion songs as Incubus in such amazing pieces of music (Kelly Eat Your Heart Out) like the middle part before 'You can Brush e Under The Carpet' part...so beautifull) and Dust And Dreams and Harbour Of Tears are no exceptions to this either......Both really snine cos of his contribution.....I would have liked to see Mickey play with Camel so much....In the Linear notes of Never Let Go, Andy wrote they were very worried about playing something as Dust And Dreams live, but 'Thank God Mickey can play with his feet.'  Its too bad that he decided to do other things again. But according to Colin, thats how Mickey is...always moving on....never sitting still, searing for new things and try other things. I remember one of my friends once told me that only a few people can actually work with him, because he is such a perfectionalist...and always whereever he is always moving his hands like is playing piano.  However......he recorded 2 great albums with Camel.  


Posted By: Drummerboy
Date Posted: January 21 2009 at 08:33
This discussion goes quite deep, but did make me stop and think again why Camel has always been one of my favorites. Two things emerge: One, they can  go from very light to very heavy and vice versa in a totally seamless, almost effortless way, more than almost any other band. Second is their true ensamble playing. Maybe lack of ego, but you have very little of the extended solo/jamming, which I think many bands do to use up concert time, as much as show off their skills. I am a drummer and worship Carl Palmer, but even I get bored with his endless solos.......
 
I always wondered why Camel was not more popular when they were at their peak. The music too complicated, poor marketing, lack of touring enough? I just don't know. BTW, I did see them twice, one in London 1975 and then in Osaka, Japan; how they got there I don't know but they played in a warehouse in 1997or so. Them live is what concerts are all about.


Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 21 2009 at 10:22
A complete lack of ego....indeed...how easy it is to aproach it is to approach them...how open they are and how friendly or even funny they are. I think I will never forget Colin's statement 'Bass is the name, base is the game.' But yes I think its true....more bands could take an example to them....and should do what they do and leave all the show stuff at home.....Camel never cared for their complete lack of charisma......they just did what they could do best....and that is to play.....And over the years Andrew brought some remarkable musicians together for his albums, but certainly also for the tours.
 
If only they go on tour again.......and showed us the light for one more time..................But Im afraid Andy's health will not allow this.


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 21 2009 at 13:58

Quote

now I must track down a good live version of Airborn to watch.
 
 
 
Chris, I would love to hear it, if you find that one live! I haven't found it yet and was wondering if they actually did it live at all.


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 21 2009 at 14:42

"So I putted on Mirage.....remains one of my favorites for sure".

Yes, mine too. I do not have it myself anymore, but fortunately it is on Deezer. And I have listened to it a lot already lately.
 
"Irish Air (instrumental) a flute...and then the roaring guitar is blasting around you ears...just out of the blue....what an experience".

 
Is this the one (I hope it works) indeed truly amazing. For the rest I hardly know anything from that album. But I bought the dvd, so I hope to hear (and see) it all soon, I can hardly wait.

"I guess Andrew is using alot of Lower G in his guitar, and holds them on.....very long"

Although I hardly know anything about music theory or guitar technics, I also would be more than interested to know what he does different from others. What makes his sound so special. It must have something to do with a sort of melancholic quality and indeed, extending it all somehow.
 
"Yes, really amazing too, but it always gave me a bit of the feeling that it are 2 seperate songs in this version".

Well, sometimes the only way I recognise Never let go is with the beginning and the lyrics, as indeed it everytime seems so very different. On the dvd Moondances it is also played in the 1977 concert, but is hard to recognise. And seems very different from other videos I found, the one from the Stationary Traveller tour and an old one from 1973 where I read the sound is the original from the single, so not really live.
 
"People around the world hail the end part of Comfortably Numb, but perhaps a very simular kind of solo Ice, is much better....and indeed when I heard that I also thought....how in all heaven can there be players that can do that".

That is what I also thought a lot lately, it is really beyond me how someone can play like that. Funny that you mention Comfortably Numb. The only (not classical) concert I ever have ever  been to (besides Camel in '84 en '92 or so), was Pink Floyd somewhere in the 90's. And a while ago I found on Youtube a video of Comfortably Numb, which was always one of my favourites. And now I know it must have had to do with the guitar indeed, I never realised that so much. But it was nowhere near what I felt when I heard Ice again. 
 
"Personally I only regretted one thing.....and that is the departure of Mickey Simmonds".

I am only just beginning to know who played when and what. But right now I find it all very interesting, especially to see the similarity between the history of the band and the way the music evolves. Most amazing!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vZaEw26XbY -


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 21 2009 at 15:37
Originally posted by Drummerboy Drummerboy wrote:

One, they can  go from very light to very heavy and vice versa in a totally seamless, almost effortless way, more than almost any other band. Second is their true ensamble playing. Maybe lack of ego
 
Yes, I very much agree. To me it feels like a constantly going through emotions in a very natural and constructive way.

And ensamble playing indeed.  It was very remarkable to see the difference between the 1976 concert of Moonmadness and the 1977 concert of Raindances. It is so different. On the first one they are all very confident and play perfectly together, a true highlight, but each very much within their own role. On the other one they are so very much searching and finding a way to play together. And at that point it did not go to well, but I think it was a very important point of progress as a group.

And lack of ego, it very much seems that way. I love to see that possible with strong and skillful personalities. Somehow it gives the idea of so much unique talent that there is no need for showing off. And that with a strong drive of just having to do what you have to do. Well, something like that...



Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 22 2009 at 03:27
Yes, perfect !!! Live I think its even better......oooh I love that sound. First that flute (Andy is a very skillfull fluteplayer as we'll) I think since yesterday I played that song already several times.......so beautifull.  
 
We'll Im not a guitarplayer either, I only hald 6 months of lessons...so I only know a few things....so I think we need an expert on this....But another reason is that especially the last years Andy is almost always using a Fender Stratocaster guitar, while in early times (or atleast that can be seenm on photo's / concerts) he is mainly playing a Gibson Les Paul. This can also explains why songs sometimes can sound different. I have this DVD's at home in NL (I live in Ireland now) so I cannot check it for now....but I will as soon as I get home.....What I understand is that with a Fender the sound sounds almost always more singing (like Gilmour and Clapton that also mainly use a Fender...so thats why the sounds are sounding very simular......especially on Comfortably Numb this can be heard very good), Gilmour always plays a red Strat, while Clapton sold his guitar that is called Blackie because its a black Strat for almost a million US dollars on an oction (he used the same guitar for years....tours and recorded the legendary Derek & The Dominoes album with that). Andy's on the last 2 tours was always black too. Another very clear way where you can hear how different they sound is the way Firth Or Fifth is played. Hackett played it always on a Gibson in the early days....creating a very thin sound....listen to the solo on Selling England By The Pound for example and compare that with the same solo on the The Way We Walk or Live Over Europe, where the same solo is played by Daryl Steurmer on a Fender and where it sounds so blasting, almost bombastic and full. Santata and Knopfler mainly play costummade Pensa's (very expensive guitars) and Vai, Petrucci and Satriani play Ibanez......and someone like BB King is using alot of Gibson Lucille...all of them create a different sound and you can hear that very clearly sometimes. I never really liked the sound of a Ibanez.....but I really really love the Fender sound.....and with Camel for that matter you get more than you can dream off.
 
The high G sound can be extended to so far and so high that its almost unbarable.....On The Division Bell of Pink Floyd for example you can hear a bit of this in certain songs as Cluster One and Marooned. According to an interview back then with Rick Wright. Gilmour had a special device on his guitar that made him abble to sound every note thee tones high than the actually not that was played. Apart from that he often used a steel pedal Guitar (as in High Hopes or One Of These Days) Although I highly doubt that....its possible that Andy is using such devices (although Im 100% sure he doesn't play Steel Guitar)...and for the rest its also relevant if he had a tremolor or a Floyd Rose on his guitar.......as with the last you can hold on a certain tone for much much longer (but its also more tricky cos the strings can break easier)........Neither way...Im sure he is using certain tricks and devices so that created this unique sound that we all admire so much. But I dont think that Andy plays costum guitars like Gilmour and Clapton do.
 
That one song can be played on so many different ways really shows the skill of a band I might say...Its truly amazing that they give another rendition evertime they play it......I think that makes it interesting for fans to go to their concerts, buy more DVD's etc. (has anone ever heard the 23 minute version of Shine On part 2 that was played during the Animals Tour of Pink Floyd ?) cos often versions they play later sound better or more flued.....So what they did with Never Let go in 1993 was indeed really interesting. During the last tour to promote Rajez they also played accoustic versions of a few songs, just like the really emotional and very sensitive Fingertips....a song that to me stands out very much cos it hardly contains any guitar but instead only bass, sax and piano.....very wonderfull song. I think songs can sound different but indeed the albums are very different freom each other too. Or even the songs on the same album can be so different. I really love that...An album as Rajez for example contains such typical Camel sound songs as Three Wishes but also beautifull accoustic songs as Straight Through My Heart.
 
Whenever I talk about it...I want to listen to it. Thank God I copies the entire collection (except A Nod In The Wink, (dont ask me why) while I even own it on cd) to my Ipod before I left to Ireland.....So I can skip through freely when we talk about certain songs.....Having said that...I must say that the remasters are reaklly good .......an album as Mirage sounds so much better this way. So today...I should get into A Live Record.....I can't even remember how long it has been since I heard the entire Snow Goose. Thinking about that....that was recorded in the Royal Albert Hall......so once Camel must be quite hot......much hotter than nowadays (although always sold out) where they preferable like to play in smaller venues.
 
People that like Camel also should try Caravan...The remastered version of In The Land Of Grey And Pink is quite easy to find on the internet and really simular sound....or it reminded me so much Camel all the time (without Andy's guitars ofcourse).


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 22 2009 at 15:37
 
"I played that song already several times.......so beautifull."   
 
Well, if you are in Ireland now, it must be even more special!
 

"so I think we need an expert on this"

Yes, I think so too. On Youtube I came across a guitar teacher who talked about the beginning of Never let go. He said something like 'this is a very special technique' something like up-up-down, or something like that.

 
"I never really liked the sound of a Ibanez.....but I really really love the Fender sound.....and with Camel for that matter you get more than you can dream off."

I doubt that I can hear differences between those guitars, but maybe it is something you just hear anyway and what makes that you like it without knowing that.

 
"Im sure he is using certain tricks and devices so that created this unique sound that we all admire so much."
 
Well, it certainly must be so. But while watching the videos I also got very much the impression that he almost inhales every note. He very much gives the impression of having a special hearing for that. It is as if he is listening constantly if it does sound like it has to. And adjusting with every movement. Maybe all musicians do that and I never noticed it before, but with him it is so visible in his whole expression.
 
 
"23 minute version of Shine On"

Very interesting, I didn't know that. I only know it from the album Delicate sound of Thunder, but there it is much shorter indeed.

 
"really emotional and very sensitive Fingertips....a song that to me stands out very much cos it hardly contains any guitar but instead only
bass, sax and piano.....very wonderfull song."

Yes, very sensitive song. They did that one on the '84 tour too.

 
"An album as Rajez for example contains such typical Camel sound songs as Three Wishes but also beautifull accoustic songs as Straight Through My Heart."

I just got to have that one!

 
"I should get into A Live Record.....I can't even remember how long it has been since I heard the entire Snow Goose. Thinking about that....that was recorded in the Royal Albert Hall"

A Life Record is indeed such a great album, I always loved it. I just found out there is also a remastered version, I don't know if you have that one. It also has a part of the '77 concert Raindances and a spoken introduction to the Snow Goose by Peter Bardens. The Snow Goose sounds just so fantasic with the orchestra. Also there are two songs extra at the end, the White Rider and Another Night. A bit strange at first to hear them right after the Snow Goose.

 
"People that like Camel also should try Caravan...The remastered version of In The Land Of Grey And Pink is quite easy to find on the internet
and really simular sound"

I found that now and indeed it has a certain similar sound, at first hearing I liked Nine Feet Underground. I will have to listen again, but this way I never get away from the computer! 



Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 23 2009 at 03:33

We'll I must say I never thought of that untill my wife remarked the fact that alot of the songs on Harbour Of Tears are actually quite depressing.....and then I explained her that its logical if you realize its about the harbour in Ireland from which so many people left in search for a better life in America. And although I discussed this subject before with friends I didn't realize utill then that I am in Ireland right now, what indeed makes it more special; because of the so Irish atmosphere of the album......

The way guitars sound is indeed not always equally obvious...cos perhaps to a certain extend there is some overlap...but its really good to hear in alot of occassions...like the examples I gave above, but Im sure I can come up with much more. But the reason why I named Ibanaz its sounding so cold and not warm like Fender or Gibson....Perhaps the fact that Ibanez is mainly used by metal and rock bands breatkly contributes to the lack of emotion. I love Dream theatre, amazinglyu skilled people...perhaps a few of the most skilled people in the new prog steam if you count out the old ones, like the member of ELP, Yes or King Crimson......what in my opinion is going in the direction of art, rather than making music. But what I cannot digest with DT is thier complete lack of emotion. I tend to believe that a band is or creative or technical skilled...An album like The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway is an example of a greatly creative band playing on your emotion as deep as it can (mainly deu the use of Mellotron and guitar), and Brain Salad Surgery an album of Greatly technical skilled people, but completely dead in emotion. DT, tends to fall in that last category....and as I keep on believing....its mainly due the coldness and the absence of emotion in the guitarsolo's that is causing this (meet many many people that made the same remark about to DT)....and no matter who you name that play Ibanez, always it seems that the solo's its creating remain cold...so I came to the conclusion that it must be the sound of that guitar.....especially if you contradict it to a Fender or a Gibson......But a Fender has this capability to create that amazing feeling in your lower stomach.......and to me that is what ultimatly music is about, in my opinion..........Camel does that....over and over.....
 
About inhailing every note....its a very interesting way of putting it......if you recall the faces of Andrew (sometimes looks like a monkey (talking about complete lack of charisma and get in higher spheres on your own music)) is drawing...quite funny actually from time to time then it looks indeed like he does something like that. And he is quite notorious for drawing all these strange faces. But the result is indeed an extremely emotional piece of music.
 
The long version of Shine on (part 2) is something only people heard that own bootlegs of the Animals tour. And then still they must own the right concerts, cos not always it was played so long, while it other times it was even longer than 23 min.....But they are quite easy to find on the net....But yes, I hold up the opinion that Gilmour was never before and never again so much on fire as during the Animals tour. Animals is really Gilmours moment to shine....and he does that with great admiration.........There is one particulair concert, the notorious one in Montreal 77, that I can recomand....as the band (mainly Roger) got into conflict with the audiennce because of someone litting fireworks during the concert, and Roger spits someone in the face they....play their anger out in the songs, which resulted in versions that were extremely passionate and a band that was literly on fire......so that eventually songs are stretched out and played much more agressive....and with the second part of Shine On this extremely obvious when they go on and on and on.........The only problem is that there is never a Soundboard recording made of any of the gigs, so that in all those years allof what we heard are audience recordings......although some of them are really good, like the Oakland Show (where they played a spectaculair version of Carefull with that Axe, Eugene (last time it was ever played).........So if Gilmour has his day.......he can play like hell, but that also counts for Clapton.....if he pulls out all stops....you also dont know what you hear....Ever heard the Fillmore recordings of Derek & The Dominoes.............Wow !!! And then I have not even begun to talk about the all time greatest player in the world Jimi Hendrix................Interestingly all of them are mainly Fender players.....so perhaps I have a secret passion for it....yes.
 
If I remember correctly Stationarry Traveller was the second album I explored after Never Let Go.......and I think you can imagine I founded especially a song as Fingertips a cold bath, It really surprised me......and loved it instantly.....To me it stands out as a really different side of Camel.....And like it was played on the Rajez Tour....accoustic....with Colin singing (I lways ask myself the question who's vocals I like more Andy or Colin) so beautifull.......But then Stationarry Traveller is one of my favorite albums......Songs as Vopos or West Berlin.....If there was one thing I regretted than it was that during the Harbour Of Tear Tour there was not even one song of this album.....
 
I must say Im very jealous of you....seeing them on this tour....Judging on Pressure Points and a bootleg I have with a complere concert of this tour it must have been such an amazing concert too.
 
Rajez is amazing !!! Another album I played God knows how many times. Really.....but during the tour they only did a few songs of this album....regretfully....Also the theme (I think its inspired by the historical figure Lawrence Of Arabia) is very interesting. My T-shirt of that tour.....on the back is stating ' We are known for the tracks that we leave behind.'  Could it more apropriate ?
 
I have the remastered version of A Live Record...Many of the people of this site regard it as one of the best live recordings ever recorded. And yes when I listened to it yesterday.......fantastic indeed......that live version of Never Let Go......that inmprovisationpart before the actual solo of Andy Kicks of...fantastic.....and....the rest is realy good to.....and Snowgoose....is very very beautifull.....and yes I alosy felt strange about the 2 songs after this....but I guess it was a space related descision to do that............And the remaster is really good too......what I recall from the original...much better than that.
 
Caravan....Yes...very nice albums.....although untill now I only know In The Land Of Grey And Pink, what is regarded by most as thier magus opus......I just founded out that Jan Schelhaas who is a Caravan member was in Camel when they made I Can See Your House From here......So that can explain the crossover sound......
 
 


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 23 2009 at 16:01
 
 
"songs on Harbour Of Tears are actually quite depressing"

One more reason for me to get this album then, in general I very much like 'depressing' music!

 

"I tend to believe that a band is or creative or technical skilled"  "But a Fender has this capability to create that amazing feeling in your lower stomach"

I think you make some very interesting remarks about creativity, technical skills and emotional music. Personally I find that one of the most interesting things about music, well of human development and natural human reactions in general. And I think it is very interesting what you say about the difference in guitars. 

Personally I have been thinking about it in relation to classical music and was wondering what makes me like certain music so much. There also I have this music I just can not stop listening to. And I thought I found a certain pattern, but then the guitar messed it all up. Because until just recently I had no idea that the guitar in Camel music was what made me like it so much.

 

"get in higher spheres on your own music"

Yes, that is exactly the impression it gives. And the most amazing thing about it is that he totaly reacts to the music, and his mood and expression change immediately if the music does. Like in Lady Fantasy on the Moondances dvd, it is a very long time he is in these 'higher spheres'. The whole middle part is like that and is so amazing to watch. He is sort of searching for each next note. Very withdrawn and totally not aware of his surrounding. Then he starts to sing again, which brings him back to reality a bit. But as soon as the lyrics are done he looks aside with a look like 'lets get started' and the whole band gets euforic, gets in a sort of trance. A total change of energy, just like the energy also radically changed at the end of the guitarsolo. Just fascinating!

 

"play their anger out in the songs, which resulted in versions that were extremely passionate and a band that was literly on fire"

Recently there was a documentary about Pink Floyd on tv. I saw it only partly, but it was most interesting to see the very different characters of the group. So I can very well imagen that passonate playing indeed. I will have to see if it is repeated, because I would love to see the beginning that I missed.

 

"Songs as Vopos or West Berlin"

I also like Vopos and West Berlin, but I don't think they are conscidered their best. I am curious to read the reviews about that album here on Prog Archives, but I try to stay a bit focussed on another blogpost so I read only those reviews for now. There is such a very rich archive here, that, if I do not restrict myself, I spent far to much time reading reviews. 
 

 
 
"We are known for the tracks that we leave behind."

I just love that quote.



Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 26 2009 at 04:14

I think Camel (and with them many different bands) are on their best...and I think that if you are looking for pure emotion and drama...you can only go for the depressive songs....I never really liked the happy songs of The Cure, but their depressive songs are penomenal.......And I think the same would go for a band as Genesis...Harrel The Barrel......is a funny experiment.....but...the real masterpieces...are often gloomy, dark....and sad...After all it is depression and sadness that often bring artist to their higest level of creativity. Such as Clapton who write Tears In Heaven...and after that a masterpiece of an album Pilgrim, all in the period after his son fell of a balcony (quite touching by the way how he writes about this in his biography)...so yes...Harbour Of Tears is about a rather sad subject and it shows in the music.

I guess like most people you like drama.....do you ? I have the feeling you are very we'll up to date with classical music...I never really got very deep in that...I must say...But I have my preference with it comes to composers. When I was still studying philosophy....I had a fellow student that somehow had the ability to turn every after class talk in the a discussion about who is the best composer...I think because he knew I would put my cards on Beethoven and he on Bach....so we never tend to solve that conflicht..mainly because use different ways to judge on what was good music...he would say...Bach is the sumum, cos his technical abilities.....that reached farther than any other composer...what made him believe that this is a way of measuring what would be regarder as better music. Obviously he knew cos he was an organplayer himself and studies a substantial part of his life to learn to play many of Bach's Cantatas. I on the other hand....always said that the only way to jusge on good music is only if gives you that special feeling in your lower stomach...or in another way.....does it play in your emotion, can it change your mood....etc. That can only lead me straight to one classical composer and that is Beethoven.....The personification of the age of Romance.....made him write music that was nothing else but pure drama......Only listen to the opening of the 5th symphony.......totally overblown drama....that his you right in your face.... Maybe the other composers that come close are Wagner...and Mahler.
 
In this there is a difference in...if someone makes music himself...or not.....I dont know if you ever heard of Liquid Tension Experiment....I remember I had a talk with the guitarplayer of Quidam (also highly recomanable if you like Camel).....and he was literly freaking on LTE, but I thought...it was way too technical...and way to much showing off....Like see what I can do with my instrument and forget in the meantime that music is the highest for of art...simply because its all about emotion.
 
Its very interesting to see if musicians get into higher spheres on their own music....I gave alot of examples of Fender guitarplayers that are abble to play on your emotion.....but I did forgot the one that dragged me into progressive rock music....and that was Steven Rothery of Marillion......Another example of pure emotion and guitarplaying that is on part wih David Gilmour and Andrew Latimer....and also an example of someone who is dreaming away on his own solo's............Every noticed that alot of guitarplayers play their stuff with their eyes closed ? I saw Marillion a few times.....and Rothery is often doing doing this...so amazing too see.....I remember a interview with Mark Knopfler a while ago (should be around 1992, when he toured wiyh Dire Straits for the last time)....when they asked him...why do you always wear a  piece og cloth around your head....and he answered. 'When I dont...the sweat with leak in my eyes, and I can't see anymore what I am playing.' But then I saw him on that tour....in 1992...so often playing with his eyes closed or...like the intro of Money For Nothhing where he got a moment alone on stage and jam, most of the time he was looking in the other direction. Perhaps this kind of playing brings them in a trance........As David Gilmour....on the 1994 tour with Pink Floyd...he stood there on the stage.....bleak, looking absolutely bored....looking into the audience...but actually not looking at anything at all, cos he was in a complete trance....created by his own solo's....once again....particulary clear when he played the end of Comfortably Numb. Which was together with the ligh/laser show....nothing short than stellar.....and perhaps one of this extremely intense moments....
 
We'll yes....I think they were a really interesting band......with 4 extremely different personalities.....Perhaps not equally amazing and creative but certainly all done their fair share of contribution to the success of Pink Floyd.......And maybe some are indeed quite understimated....although no-one can deny that Roger was the driving force behind the band....and that so many people only want to see David Gilmour play guided  by a fantastic show......I read quite a couple of biographies over the years.....and they were indeed something......and sometimes I really think that its an absolute miracle that this band became eventually so extremely successfull.  Cos the music too obscure, songs that are often too long....a mainly album driven band.....and often far too complicated lyrics for normal people....but still they had that success....It really is puzzling to me why this could happen.
 
I highly doubt if ST in general will be acknowledgedas one of thier best albums....I always think that this right rather will go to Mirage or Snow Goose instead....but yes....I always liked ST alot.....maybe because its really an album that sounds out in realtion to the rest as different....more pollished perhaps....more an album with beautifull popsongs.....that only rarely knows moments of emotional guiratsolo's.......and a complete absence.....of pieces as Ice or anything like that.
 
Oh....you mentioned Lady Fantasy earlier.....a few days ago I was listening to The Paris Collection and I think this song has the best version of LF I have ever heard.......and indeed what I remember of that tour also....After the first couplet.......comes a Hammondsolo........totally amazing !!!!


Posted By: VariousArtist
Date Posted: January 26 2009 at 17:47
Nice to see a post about Camel -- and a passionate one at that!
 
When I was just a little kid my brother played lots of music, loud enough to where people from afar would say "hey, I can hear your house from here" (sorry, bad in-joke).  Ahem, anyway, this is where certain music he played just resonated, not just through the foundations of the building but deep within me.   Genesis, Pink Floyd, Yes, Al Di Meola, Santana, etc.
 
And one other band, namely Camel.  At the time I didn't know anything about them, but I was hooked on this magical album of instrumental music called "Snow Goose".   No-one else I knew seemed to know much about them, but I didn't care about things like that then...or now.
 
Some time later when I put my first band together at the age of 16, we recorded a few long pieces of music that were mostly instrumental.  Someone asked me about influences and I said "Steve Hackett", to which they replied "sounds more like Camel".   So I went back and listened to my stuff with new ears and, of course, more Camel and fell in love with even more of their music. 
 
From that point on I went to see Camel play several times over the years, starting with a series of gigs down the road from where I lived, at Hammersmith Odeon in London in 1980, 1981, 1982.  And then much later in the USA in the late 1990's.
 
A truly underrated band indeed.  Sure, they've put out a few albums that are not on a par with the ultimate Snow Goose record which will forever be my favourite.  But there are classic songs throughout their career and sometimes when I'm in the mood for one of their songs, I end up listening to them for hours and hours and marvel at how truly moving their music can be.


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 27 2009 at 03:49

 

In my next blogpost, Cycle of life, I describe my impression of Lunar Sea from the Moonmadness album and recorded on the Moondances dvd. Again I am more than happy with any comment, here or on my blog. I really helps me understand and formulate my thoughts and feelings about the music better.   

http://www.camellive.com/2009/01/cycle-of-life/ - Next is Lunar Sea, which is on the album Moonmadness. I always liked that album a lot, most of all ‘Song within a Song’, ‘Spirit of the Water’ and especially ‘Air Born’. Air Born is one of those songs I can turn on repeat and listen to the whole evening, over and over again. And even with the volume up, you do not have to be alone in the room. Others like it too (well, maybe not as many times in a row) and it gives a real relaxing and special atmosphere which fills the whole room. I also like the lyrics here (and if the world keeps spinning round, you’ll be back again), which summarizes a bit my overall feeling of the whole album.

But when I watched the live videos, I started to appreciate the other tracks on the album much more. Two of them are on the dvd Moondances (Another Night and Lunar Sea) and at the moment I like them even more than my previous favourites, but that might easily change if I would find a live version of Air Born.

What I like most in Lunar Sea, is the gradually rising from a background, playing an impressive role, going over in a perfect combination of qualities and then gradually being taken over again to finish where it started.

In the concert Lunar Sea starts after The White Rider, which goes perfectly over from one song into another. The beginning gives a very specific mood, no real playing, actually more several sounds that fill the space. I never realised it so much before, but Andrews guitar is also very notable here and even plays a certain melody. I think it is something he does with his guitar what you can see very well in the middle part of Lady Fantasy. A sound as if he makes the guitar cry. And I think he does that here too, it is a sort of melody. Only very subtle and I am not sure because it could easily be another sound.

Apart from the sounds, it also is very special to watch the camerawork, which is just amazing. During the whole concert there are close ups and images mixed up all the time. Which at times gives a very special effect. Here with Lunar Sea you look at the drums moving and the players are reflected in them. You see Peter Bardens reflected in the drums and you see the face of Andrew Latimer showing up very subtle. Most is dark but some lights  stand out, especially Badens’ blouse, a white shining blouse which reflects many of the colours during the concert. It is just a pity that the bass player, Doug Ferguson, is hardly visible.

Then a rhythm starts with the keyboard and the drums, very soft at first and gradually increasing, the speed as well as the volume. And now the colours come in. On this video it is not so visible, but the colours are very bright and really impressive.

Then the sound of the guitar comes in very clear and several things happen at the same time, so you have no idea where to focus. First of course the sound of the guitar, it is just amazing. But at the same time your eyes get fixed on the expression on Latimers face, which again is in close up reflected in the drums. You can just watch the impact every tone has on him. Really very special to see. Then the camera moves away and you get a great look on his playing. He is still visible in the drums and very fixed on the sound of his guitar. You can see him react to every note. Then it seems that he is getting it and all instruments are coming together again.

Then the keyboard takes over and the rest is very relaxing supportive. Again great camera work with pictures through each other and beautiful colours reflected in the drums and the blouse. Then a focus on the drums and the speed goes up.
Now the guitar comes in again but this time much more playing his own tune. As if he is trying things out, but even though is fantastically followed by rest. It really sounds great together. Then the speed goes up even further and somehow it become a coherent repeating melody which goes on for a while.

I think this is my favourite part of Lunar Sea. Although the guitar is really going on with it, tends to escape and do very much what he wants, still it is followed by the rest and not just that, even very much complementing it. To me it sounds as this is what playing together is all about. It sounds very confident, melodic and powerful. But also a perfect coming together of instruments.

Then the speed and volume gradually decreases and all is taken over again by the sounds of nature. And Lunar Sea will almost unnoticeable go over in the next ones, Preparation and Dunkirk from the album the Snow Goose.

So Lunar Sea reminds me of the whole Story of the Snow Goose, which also has this increasing, playing its part and decreasing again. And I like that very much. It has this undeniable rhythm of life in it. Given as a very clear structure, but within that structure there is all freedom for experiment. And because they are so good together, it sounds amazing.

 
 


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 27 2009 at 04:39
 
Daniel, great post again. You give words to what I was thinking about lately. While reading your post,  there were so many times I wanted to react that I seemed to loose track. So I was thinking about how I could best respond. When reading your post again, I thought I could centre around three things you said, that for me, are very closely related and maybe I can use that as a focus. The first is the question if I like drama, the second your remarks about Beethoven in relation to Bach, Wagner and Mahler and third about your mentioning of rarely emotional guitarsolo's on the album Stationary Traveller.

To start with the latter, I agree with that, if I listen to the album. But during the concert it is totally different. Not that I was so much aware of that at the time I heard it, but seeing the dvd Pressure Points did make that very clear to me. And it is not that the dvd is even close in giving good camera work, or in focussing on who is playing or giving beautiful colours, it is not, but what it does show, is the very intense atmosphere, and for that matter, very emotional guitarsolo's.

I want to try and get it all better into words, but one clear example is the track Pressure Point. I don't know if you have heard it live, so I will try to upload the video at the end of this post. There is an intro first, and Pressure points itself starts after about 2 minutes. It is a very extended version, but is so really good. And it also gives such a good impression of what impact that concert had on me.

Then about if I like drama, can be centred about Beethoven. Like you, I like Beethoven the most. My classical music discovery started with Beethoven and it is where it ended more or less. There is a lot I like from Bach, especially from the Matthew Passion, like Erbarme Dich or Aus Liebe, are truly amazing. I can more or less understand how people see his work as brilliant and overall I like hearing his work. From Mozart I like his Requiem the most, I have listened to that so many times. And for the rest there is so much, I really like.

But both the music of Bach as well as the music of Mozart do not have that same powerful, basic and down to earth feeling that Beethoven has. And Beethoven has that with about all his work and that is what I like the most. But also something from his personality, he just has to throw that in, his music is just who he is, it is his very essence which he expresses. Well, at least that is the impression he gives me.

But what I somehow miss in his work is something what I found with the music of Schubert. There is a lot of Schubert which I do not tend to listen to, but there is some of his work that I just have to listen to over and over again. One of that is his Ave Maria and second his Unfinished symphony. And both have a certain quality, a certain magical tenderness, that I miss with Beethoven.

Then Wagner and Mahler do have some really very amazing music. I especially like Mahlers 2th symphony and some of the preludes of Wagners opera's. Of course there is much, much more, also a lot that I like, but not so much that I have to listen to it over and over again.

And this brings me to your remark about drama, all their work is, (in my very personal opinion) to pretentious. Pretentious in a way that is searching for a way to move people to have a certain effect, to create drama. And it is not that I don't like that. At times I really like that. But at the end it is not what I like the most in music. And in classical music I most like the combination of Beethoven and Schubert.

And just that combination of Beethoven and Schubert, of essential powerful expression combined with a sort of magical tenderness (I will have to go search for some better words to describe what I mean) is what I feel with the music of Camel. And I find that very much in their concert Pressure Points.

Of course for a large part the performance of Lady Fantasy there, which was truly amazing. I was so surprised to hear some old favourites, because I thought the concert ended with Long Goodbyes, which in itself was fantastic, and again especially the guitar there. But I still remember my surprise that when I thought it was over, just then the best (at that time) had to come, some of the Snow goose and Lady Fantasy.

But another truly wonderful guitar piece of that concert is Stationary Traveller itself. Which I find so truly amazing, it just takes my breath away, every time I hear it. Most of all seeing it live ofcourse, but also on the album. In fact it would be very hard to choose between Lady Fantasy, Ice and Stationary Traveller, those are my absolute favourites at this moment.

So indeed for the album itself I would say it are not so many moments of emotional guitarsolo, and it does not so much have this powerful and dense atmosphere. But the concert does, and thinking and writing about it now, that is the combination that I like the most. I just have to try and put it better into words.


The extended version of Pressure Points, starting after about 2 minutes.


 


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 27 2009 at 05:33
Originally posted by VariousArtist VariousArtist wrote:

but I was hooked on this magical album of instrumental music called "Snow Goose".   No-one else I knew seemed to know much about them

Thank you so much for your story. And I so recognise what you say. Hooked on their music whithout knowing anything at all about them, no-one else who knows anything about them or their music. And then later on listening again and even loving it more. And like you, I so admire their classical songs that somehow are taken over the years and many times only get better.

And indeed their music is so moving. But as I was thinking lately, moving in a not just personal, but also more universal way. I don't know yet how to describe it, but somehow I think that explains their magic on those who never heard it before, or those that are not really aware of it. 

I don't know what it is exactly, but I really would like to find that out!





Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 27 2009 at 06:47
Moonmadness is another great album in the line of Mirage and the Snow Goose....I think its easy why several people comment on this album as one of ther best...there are after all so many great tunes on this album....Personally I think even a song as Sprit Of The Water is imply amazing.....
 
But the highlights ofcourse are Song Within A Song....what a song is that...and what an opening it would have made...I think the level is been provided right away...Another night...is a song that still needs to grow on me.....but it contains a really maginificent hammond solo in the end....The absolute highlights are the 2 last songs of the album...to begin with Airborn.......one of the most beautifull songs they ever wrote.......(I make a difference between songs and tracks) and absolutely beautifull vocals of Latimer...and flute ofcourse also....Its a real shame that there indeed are no live versions known to us.....and the songs possible is never performed live....it would have made such a great contribution to a setlist.....
 
Lunar Sea is known as a long live favorite....since its not presented on Never Let Go, I asume that its not played on the 1993 tour...but it was used as an opening song on the 1997 and that worked really we'll...its an instrumental track....so the band could pull out all the stops right away....Awsome....Yes, its a song with some varying from, really wild till really sensitive playing......with that I think a typical Camel song.
 
What next : I can see your house from here.' ?


Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 27 2009 at 08:57

Anthe...yes I know ressure Points very we'll.....My boss that introduced me to Camel...took me to her house one day...costum made speakers....absolutely top notch high end set...and she told me to sit down and listen some stuff.....One of the things she put on was indeed Pressure Points....right from the beginning.....I thought....wow...there we go again.........just as with Never Let Go...I think I have the extended DVD at home...but didn't have the chance to waith it yet...Too bad...But I can imagine something with that....I mean it goes on like Pressure Points then it must be totally stellar.....Its indeed true that the studio version tend to focus more on other instruments, but live Andy indeed pulling out all the plugs again......Particularry amazing is the solo of Pressure Points that starts around 3:20, the music is softening down....only keys and beautifull and suddle bass and there we go......so amazingly touching....and then the interplay of keys and guitars......such a different story than the album......The other things I heard that day....were some things of Eric Woolfson (Re-recorded songs of Alan Parsons songs) and.....what was the absolute summum for me.....a song called Only Because Of You from Roger Hodgson.....talking about drama and emotion......and of that was not enough...she ended with a version of Supertram's Fools Overture that was recorded with the musical festival Night Of The Promps, where the song is performed completely....with Orchestra.....the best version I have ever heard......Roger behind the piano......but man....what playing.....quite simular as when I saw Supertram in 1997.......I never forget that solo from Rick Davis... during Another Man's Woman.......totally amazing...and a really different way of emotion.....

Mozart always sounded too childish to me....Perhaps its due the fact that I can't get that picture out of my head whenever I listen Mozart that I have left from....watching Amadeus......But one of my professors more than once.....emphasized the absolute beauty of The Magical Flute....and often remarked that he envied all that students that still had it lying on front of them and still were about to discover something so beautifull. But I never got into it....I heard alot from Mozart over the years...but never was really blown away. I think because it was not giving me that feeling....and I own everything from Beethoven that he ever wrote....thank God DG decide to release that in a box...of 20 volumes....so I  listen through everything quite intense.....and it was indeed what I regarded the end of my classical journey.......the summum of classical music......with no doubt....

I like the way you say....'His music is what he is....' I think thats very adequatly described cos it s really true....this man was overwelmed with emotion and drama....and his music is very much the result of an overflow of drama....I never forgot a certain scene in Immortal Beloved...where Gary Oldman (as Beethoven) plays Fur Elise...playing with his head on the piano......his eys closed...while theb love of his life is watching him from a distance and when he spots her....he totally freaks out because he regarded it as taking a secret peek in someones diary.....So I guess for Beethoven composing music had the same function as writing a diary.......so he personified himself completely with the music he composed. A few other things I thought that were absolutely haunting.......Adagio For Strings from Samuel Barber....Certain pieces of the Peer Gyntt Of Edward Grieg...And I think the adagio of the first symphony of Mahler......Symphony 3 of Gorecki, Requim of Mozart,  and yes...I also often like the eginning of the Wagner opera's....as Parsifal for example....or ofcourse Tristan and Isolde......Some middle parts of Rienzi are very amazing.....due the use use of choire...truly fantastic.....Beethoven is a star in that too.....Only too bad that Beethoven only composed very few Organ pieces, while Back compused too much of this....Im not very familiar with Schubert....I shall look if I have something of him at home or on my harddrive......I have alot of classical stuff that I still didn't listen too. But classical can cause emotion in alot of different ways....like by extremely sensitive piano, violin or cellosolo's or...by fully blown organ work or by a choire....and In general I have not really established a preference (yet)....while in normal music...my preference definatly goes out to guitar and mellotron.

Yes, Lady Fantasy and Ice also would be in my top 3...and I think or Nimrodel or Never Let Go.......I truly like Stationary Traveller (love to hear that live, but I dont have the DVD here....see if I can find it on You Tube) but the studioversion is indeed also realy amazing.....one that I should have added to the list of Vopos, Fingertips and West Berlin............But I think Never Let Go...because it was the song that brought me into Camel.....and Ice because its simply imposible to believe that people can play like that....untill you actually hear this song yourself.....or even better see it performed live. Lady Fantasy....is the all time favorite for any Camel fan and....in a way this really is more than justified as I would say its one of the crowning achievements in Progressive Rock in general....Once again....especially the power and rawness of the liveversion....No matter on....A Live Record, Never Let Go or A Paris Collection.....but preferable this last version.....although the vocals of this version are not done by Andy himself....which he does with Never Let Go....Perhaps because he got ill durimg that particulair tour and his voice had to be spared.....No matter why...I think this voacals are great....and the lyrics are different in relation to Never Let Go....or am I only imagining that ?
 
Oh and....about your desire to put everything in better words.......Not all things we experience in life can be put into words.....language has its shortcomings and when it comes to describing art and emotion....you can see that very clearly......Music indeed the highest form of art (Schopenhauer was so right about that) and indeed is one of these things that can so totally overblow you that need everything in your body to recover from that.....I was more than fortunate enough to experience a few of these moments in my life......and yes...2 of them were during 2 different Camel concerts.
 
But...only putting on a cd...can have such an effect as we'll.....In my other reply I was refering to Quidam, a band from Poland that....toured with Colin Bass in 1998 to promote his album 'An Outcast of the island' (another album with some truly amazing guitarplaying of Andy)....Great concerts..I think I saw 3 of them over a week time.....but the album Quidam...that first song Sanctuarium.......absolutely amazing........openimg of a debute.....perhaps one of the best ones ever.....that guitarplaying comes extremely close of that of Andy......But here...the bridge......has first a Cello solo, then a flute solo and then ultimatly the guitarsolo................it leaves you utterly devastated.......only longing to do one thing....listen to it again.....and again.....and live......its equally amazing.....and is the cellosolo often replaced by the Firth Of Fifth solo. If you can get your hands on that.....listen to it.
 
 


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 28 2009 at 06:51
 
"The absolute highlights are the 2 last songs of the album...to begin with Airborn.......one of the most beautifull songs they ever wrote.......(I make a difference between songs and tracks) and absolutely beautifull vocals of Latimer...and flute ofcourse also....Its a real shame that there indeed are no live versions known to us.....and the songs possible is never performed live....it would have made such a great contribution to a setlist"
 
Yes, definitely one I would love to hear live. I should do that too indeed, making a difference between song and track. I mixe them up all the time. I sure wish there was a better word that could be used for both. Track always makes me think of something on an album, not so much something played live. But that might be just me and my limited English. 

 

"Lunar Sea is known as a long live favorite....since its not presented on Never Let Go, I asume that its not played on the 1993 tour...but it was used as an opening song on the 1997 and that worked really we'll...its an instrumental track....so the band could pull out all the stops right away....Awsome....Yes, its a song with some varying from, really wild till really sensitive playing......with that I think a typical Camel song."

I just heard it. Yesterday I got the dvd and it is just fantastic. And what a synchronicity that they just start with Lunar Sea. And it so very interesting to hear the difference. Personally I like the one on the Moondances dvd more, especally that it has a much nicher flow there. But maybe also because I heard that one so much yet. And I just have get used to the other one.

What I also noticed is the very much more powerful sounding of the guitar than on the other two dvd's, Moondances and Pressure Points. And I find that for some numbers really fantastic, like a few from the album Nude (Drafted, Docks and Beached) and of course for Ice.

But for others it just seems to much at times. I especially have that with parts of the Snow Goose and I also have it with Lunar Sea. I personally like that more how they did that in the beginning. But on the other hand it is great to hear such diversity, that makes it all so much more interesting.

 
"What next : I can see your house from here.' ?"

Well, I was thinking about that. I tend to follow where my interest goes, although my original intention was to use the order of the concerts. So that would lead to the video of Preparation and Dunkirk from the Snow Goose. But if I would follow the timeline of the albums I would have to take Never let go first, becaust that was on the first album. But I think I want to hear the performance of the Never let go concert first. So maybe I can better follow my current interest. And at the moment I am getting even more and more intrigued by Ice.

And that feeling is even increasing now I found something of King Crimson. I recently had listened to some of it, as I read about it all over this forum. And some I really liked. But today I saw someone mention Epitaph and so I went looking, and I found it. And wow, just wow.

What I heard so far from them was at times really intruiging, but it did not have some coherent whole what I like so much. But that song does, and how. From the very minute on I was drawn in. Besides that it was a video with the lyrics shown, and that made it even so much more fantastic. Really good.

That song, together with Ice and Pressure Points are going on in my head now, I am just not sure yet what exactly their connection is. 

About your other post, wow, is that again going to take some time to respond to. You say so many things I immediately want to react to, but what is so difficult to write down at times. But it sure helps me a lot to find the right words. 




Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 28 2009 at 09:37
In Dutch you can make the difference more easy...In English we speak of song and track....And in Dutch Liedje and Nummer.....In progressive rock its not always apropropriate to speak about songs (liedjes) because it are often compositions that are far from that or have the pretention to be that..Alot of Songs of Camel can be characterised is Songs (City Life, Refugee, Air Born, Eyes Of Ireland are just a few that come in my mind)...but alot can also certainly not be named songs. But tracks....mainy due they are instrumental, and have a rather epic character (songs like The Gods Of Light, Lady Fantasy, Nimrodel, Ice, Lawrence and Lunar Sea Come to mind now) This is a tendency of Prog in general....and many bands prefer to write epics....or sometimes only epics (like Transatlantic for example, a concert of over 2,5 hours but they only played 6 songs friom which 3 were over 30 min. long......Bands are Yes, Genesis, Pink Floyd, ELP etc...are notorious for writing epics....this is making prog...a more album based  thing. But greatly interesting......I think in that they borrowed heavenly from classical music.
 
Last night I was at home and I decided to watch some stuff on You Tube....ofcourse all Camel....I watched Stationary Traveller....what great tune this is live....Then I watched Ice......sodeju !! (we would say in Dutch)...It reminded me how amazing it was to be present at this concert / tour......I took your advise and observed what was going on....What I must say that really struck me was what happened right at the last tunes of Ice...when Andy is breathing out...very slowly....and looks like he is so fullfilled of relief.....like something he had to deliver......and builded up and came eventually to an ultimate climax........Another thing that is really surprising me is....no Floyd Rose or Tremelor......so he.....is not using a pedal on his guitar, what is strange.....if you realize a tremellor is standard....so that means the guitar must be costummade.....
 
You refer to the fact....that you think the older versions have more powerfull sound....I think sometimes the songs are played in a faster note.......This was also a high factor of complaints in relation to the 2007 show of Genesis...that alot of songs very played in a lower key and a slower pace so that Phil could catch up the vocals still. Band members are getting old.....and in Camel its not any different....The fire and the wild hairs are dissapearing, but the passion and the emotion....the desire for mellow songs are ballads are getting stronger. Look to Mark Knopfler for example.....his album do really tend to become a snorfest by now...Overproduction, good songwriting....goes at the expenses of amazing guitarplaying.....and Knopfler can play......The other example comes to mind is Clapton....in his younger days he was a member of Cream, Derek & The Dominoes and so on.....but these days his albums and playing is rather mellow. Only rarely he pulls out the stops. Its a far cry from what he did with Cream or the way he played during the Fillmore concerts with Derek & The Dominies.
 
However tend to believe that the guitar does sounds more powerfull on never versions, simply because Andy is playing a Fender and in early times a Gibson.....but it can also be due the fact that the soundquality is better.......I should listen to it more, and find out / observe the difference.
 
So you are into KC now....I see that you got hooked to KC by exactly the same song as me Epitaph. This is what I would call Mellotron heaven. And Greg Lake's playing is simply fantastic. Its one of the all time classics (and it was already written in 1967) in Prog and for many bands I think one of the biggest inspirations.....In The Court Of The Crimson King, remains to this day one of my everlasting classics.....what a songs on that album.....I can recomand the albums In The Wake Of Poseidon and Lark's Tongues In Aspic, but be carefull with others cos it can be quite experimental and chaotic from time to time. KC needs to grow on you.....I own every album...butfor alot it took me along time to apreciate it......And most albums usually have a few songs that are amazing...songs as The Night Watch, Starless, The Sheltering Sky, Sleepless etc.....
 


Posted By: Drummerboy
Date Posted: January 28 2009 at 10:53
Going off topic a bit, but if you like KC, you MUST check out Anekdoten, from Sweden. Their early stuff has strong KC influence including mellotron, but is also original.
 
Also, the reference to Caravan is a good one; more of a jazz influence I'd say, but complimentary to and contemporary with Camel.


Posted By: Hercules
Date Posted: January 28 2009 at 12:05
Anyone who passes ANY comment on The Snow Goose without actually reading Gallico's book has no credibility whatsoever. Comments such as "too soft", "not heavy enough" etc,etc miss the point: this is inspired by a book about an injured goose and a beautiful girl and a deformed man who fall in love, set in the Dunkirk era, written for children. Heavy is just not appropriate.

Anthe's work, relating the music to passages of the book, is brilliant and may just bring some enlightenment to the many who clearly have no idea what the album is about at a deeper level. Personally, I think it is THE greatest work of genius in the prog rock canon.

Well done, Anthe!

 

-------------
A TVR is not a car. It's a way of life.


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 29 2009 at 01:55
Originally posted by Daniel1974nl Daniel1974nl wrote:

 
You refer to the fact....that you think the older versions have more powerfull sound 
 
I was planning to react on much more you said, but first I want to try and show you what I meant to say. Maybe it is best to focus on one part, so I uploaded Rhayader goes to town of the Snow Goose, once played in 1975 and the other played in 1997.
 
Somehow I feel the first one is more subtle and the last one is more intense. That is about the best I can describe it at this point.
 
So I don't mean that the older version is more powerful, I meant that I personally prefer that one. 
 
But with others, like Ice, I much more prefer the intensity. There is a certain very dense feeling in his later playing. Which I really like very much. Certainly how he can perfectly dose it in Harbour of tears. 
 
But with some of the older work, like Lunar Sea and with Rhayader I think it is to much, and I like the other ones more. Of course that is a very personally preference, but I am just trying to find out what exactly causes that.
 
So here are the 2 videos. With the first one, Rhayader goes to town starts at 4.40 and with the second one it starts at about 3 minutes. I am very curious to hear what you (and others) think.
 


 
 

 
  


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 29 2009 at 02:12
Originally posted by Drummerboy Drummerboy wrote:

if you like KC, you MUST check out Anekdoten

I went searching yesterday and I must say it has a certain magical feeling, that I like very much. I was planning to listen to just one video, but somehow there was an autoplay and I did not want to stop it. 

So I listened to 4 of them, The war is over, From within, Sad rain and Gravity. Well, if I remember correctly. And indeed, great band. 

But the strange thing was that I found a lot of videos of them on Deezer, but no albums.


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 29 2009 at 02:29
Originally posted by Hercules Hercules wrote:

Anyone who passes ANY comment on The Snow Goose without actually reading Gallico's book has no credibility whatsoever. 

Well, I certainly was very impressed and moved by the book. I had never read the story but a few months ago I thought I could look at our local librairy to see if they had the book. And to my surprise (there are not so many English books in a Dutch local librairy) they did have it.

So I took it home and read at one go. Well, not that it takes so long, not to much longer than listening to the Snow Goose. It is a really short story, but at the same time one of the most beautiful and moving stories I have ever read. 

And indeed, it did make listening to the Snow Goose so much more interesting and understandable.


Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 29 2009 at 06:11
I have no option to watch it here at my work.....will do that at home...I'll let you know....Im very curious too.


Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 29 2009 at 06:32
Anekdoten's albums : Vemon, Nucleus, Live In Japan, From Within, Gravity, Waking The Dead & A Time Of Day. No legal video's / DVD are known to me...or released untill now..what is regretfull cos its really amazing to see this people play. And you found 2 of their greatest tunes.....Gravity and Sad Rain.
 
I think its by far the best modern day progressive rock band.....indeed extremely influenced by KC...and you can heard that....In their early years they often used to play some KC covers, like Circus to close the setlist but now they more and more only play their own stuff.
 
We are getting off topic.....but Swedish Prog is really good. Try...Landberk, Anglagard or The Flower Kings
 
 


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: January 30 2009 at 03:37

"around 3:20, the music is softening down....only keys and beautifull and suddle bass and there we go......so amazingly touching....and then the interplay of keys and guitars......such a different story than the album"

Do you mean around 4:20 with the solo of the bassguitar? I also think it absolutely fantastic. It gives such a special sphere.

"Mozart always sounded too childish to me....Perhaps its due the fact that I can't get that picture out of my head whenever I listen Mozart that I have left from....watching Amadeus"

Yes, I know what you mean. I have the same and the most of Mozart I like, but does not have that extreme magical. With some exceptions, like his requiem and the Commendatore scene of  Don Giovanni. And beside that there are a few symphonies I like a lot, but not to the extend that I want to listen to it over and over again. What I did find very intruiging was the movie Amadeus itself, especially just the fact that he was rather childish, without consciously being aware of his talents. Beethoven in that gives me a different feeling, more of a selfexpression.

"plays Fur Elise...playing with his head on the piano......his eys closed...while theb love of his life is watching him from a distance and when he spots her....he totally freaks out because he regarded it as taking a secret peek in someones diary.....So I guess for Beethoven composing music had the same function as writing a diary.......so he personified himself completely with the music he composed."

I have to go see that movie again. I saw it only once and can not remember it too well. But indeed I think his music was very much who he was. A reflection of his development in life. Really different from Mozart where this talent seemed to have existed already and not so much a result of his own life or with Bach where religion seemed to have a bigger influence.
And as I am finding out more and more, this developmental process is what I like the most, with its top in music. Because of its brilliant way of communication with the unconscious knowledge we all have.

 A few other things I thought that were absolutely haunting.......Adagio For Strings from Samuel Barber

Yes, really good, I also like that a lot.

"Symphony 3 of Gorecki"

Wow, that you like that too! My husband came home one day and said he had something that was the most depressing he had ever heard. And I just had to agree, but indeed so very beautiful.

"Requim of Mozart

Yes, there were time I just could listen to that. Really, really intruiging music. Others tend to say it is to depressing, but I don't think that. At times I just like to hear it a lot, no idea why.

"and yes...I also often like the eginning of the Wagner opera's....as Parsifal for example"

Yes, especially Parsifal indeed, I don't know why, but it is just so amazing.

"or ofcourse Tristan and Isolde......Some middle parts of Rienzi are very amazing.....due the use use of choire"

Tristan and Isolde at parts indeed too. Reinzi I can not remember hearing.

"truly fantastic.....Beethoven is a star in that too.....Only too bad that Beethoven only composed very few Organ pieces"

I do not remember hearing those. Somehow I can not think of Beethoven so much with organmusic.

"Im not very familiar with Schubert"

I remember seeing a serie, years ago, about Schubert. It came very late at night and somehow it had a very slow character. But I was so intruiged by it. There his unfinished symphony was played and I just found it so moving. I had been looking but could never find that serie of movie again.

"I have alot of classical stuff that I still didn't listen too. But classical can cause emotion in alot of different ways....like by extremely sensitive piano, violin or cellosolo's or...by fully blown organ work or by a choire....and In general I have not really established a preference (yet)"

I noticed that my preference in classical music is the voice, especially soprano and even more specific not the technical and coloured one, but a pure and rather sober but powerful voice. Or the voice of Maria Callas, which also has that but than with so much passion. I had a tape once with her songs I love the most and there where days I did nothing than play that all day long. But later on I started searching for more sober and pure voices.

"while in normal music...my preference definatly goes out to guitar and mellotron."

Yes indeed definitely guitar. And mellotron is something I just discovered. But it has already very much impressed me. But hearing some music now (like you call Epitaph of King Crimson Mellotron heaven) I must have always liked it with the early music of Camel, without realising it.

Oh and....about your desire to put everything in better words.......Not all things we experience in life can be put into words.....language has its shortcomings and when it comes to describing art and emotion....you can see that very clearly"

Yes, I know that it is probabley not possible. But at this point I am very determined to give it a try anyway. It is just, how do you find the right words. That is what I wrote a few days in despair. Finding the right words to describe what music does… seems impossible.

But the very next day I found the Youtube video with King Crimsons Epitaph. The video I saw had the lyrics on it and the combination of both just blew me away. I never really listen to lyrics, mostly because music is the most important for me. No matter how good the lyrics are, if the music is not extremely addictive, than I am not so very interested in the piece. And in classical music the lyrics were especially not interesting for me. Either religious, or some language I could not understand. But even if I could understand it, it had mostly a second role. Recently I had been listening to Lisa Gerrard. She has a fantastic voice, but here words are no real words, just sound and made up language. Just something she produces herself. And for me that is just enough often. The sound is more important then the meaning, something like that.

But here, with Epithaph, every word was perfecty in the right place. But had also such an impressive meaning to me. Somehow it did express what I am searching for, for such a long time now. It gives words to some point in human development what I am so very interested in which in a way I hear with Ice and also with Pressure Points somehow. I have no idea yet how I have to say how I mean that, but I am certainly going to try. Although that of course will be a very personal intepretation, and maybe not at all what was intended by the writer of that text, and maybe not at all what others hear in it. 

"Music indeed the highest form of art (Schopenhauer was so right about that) and indeed is one of these things that can so totally overblow you that need everything in your body to recover from that.....I was more than fortunate enough to experience a few of these moments in my life......and yes...2 of them were during 2 different Camel concerts."

Yes, I think that I can see what you mean.
 
"But...only putting on a cd...can have such an effect as we'll.....In my other reply I was refering to Quidam, a band from Poland that....toured with Colin Bass in 1998 to promote his album 'An Outcast of the island' (another album with some truly amazing guitarplaying of Andy)....Great concerts..I think I saw 3 of them over a week time"

Wow, really.

"but the album Quidam...that first song Sanctuarium.......absolutely amazing........openimg of a debute.....perhaps one of the best ones ever.....that guitarplaying comes extremely close of that of Andy......But here...the bridge......has first a Cello solo, then a flute solo and then ultimatly the guitarsolo................it leaves you utterly devastated.......only longing to do one thing....listen to it again.....and again.....and live......its equally amazing.....and is the cellosolo often replaced by the Firth Of Fifth solo. If you can get your hands on that.....listen to it"

Defenitely sounds like something I would like to hear.


 



Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: January 30 2009 at 10:58
We;ll, yes the movie Amaseus was fabulous indeed....Have you by any chance seen the remastered and extended version of this movie ? Its really much better, simply because the music blows so hard in your face...the music is so uch more dynamical, while I think the normal version is not like that all. I guess it really benefits from a 5.1 remaster....keeps you wondering how it would sound in DTS...And Yes I think Mozart was not aware of his geniousness at all......And just did all this stuff because he had to...like it was flowing out of him....without taking any effort......I think that usually the case with people that posess a highly talented skill...I had a friend who was highly talented in mathmatics...we were all trying and trying but he just did his thing and didn't really see why we were suffering so much....I think when people get older they eventually will....As far as I know Kant or Newton, for example were perfectly aware of thier intellectual capabilities....Kant even refered to it....stating that all he had to much in his head was what he had to short in his body...Great Philosophers often suffer from a poor body and bad health conditions, Descartes, Spinoza, Kant, etc.....So perhaps....But as it appears in the movie atleast Beethoven was fully aware of what he could achieve...and indeed enlarged all imaginable borders....I ask you someone who is deaf...can compose something so amazing as the 9th Symphony........Anyway....he he was convinced all along that it was the highest grandeur...but others often reminded him it was a impossible piece of music......just like the notorious Rach. 3.... what is often named as the most difficult piece of music ever composed. I guess in the end.....Beethoven and Bach took themself more serious.
 
To be continued
 
 


Posted By: mikfox
Date Posted: February 02 2009 at 09:37
Hi all,
I have to say I have been moved and touched at the way you all feel about "Camel". Most of the friends I have grown up with over the years did not have the same tastes in music as myself but I have always been undeterred by that and the one thing I have found about people who see in Camel more than just a group of musicians or a band, is that they are all one. It is, as somebody else mentioned here, a universal thing.
They had this ability to connect in an ethereal way, that few other groups were able to. No gimmicks, costumes, strange publicity, just the honesty and integrity of what was in their hearts and souls.
I have been listening to Camel since 1971 almost every week since then. I first came across them as a result (strangely enough) of hearing Todd Rundgren's "I saw the Light" on Radio Luxemburg one evening....I called at my local record shop that weekend to see if they had it and yes, I bought it. Whilst I was there, he asked me if I liked Todd as he had an album just out "Something/Anything". I played a couple of tracks in the shop and bought that also. Needless to say at the time, that was my week's wages gone.....
However, the following week I called at the shop again and he said if I like what Todd Rundgren played, he would sort out some groups which he thought were similar or that I would like.....and I was introduced to Camel. I have loved them ever since and great credit must go to Peter Bardens in the early days (who I had the pleasure of meeting, along with his band "Mirage" and dining with after show on one occasion.
Not forgetting Andy, who last time I heard was making a good recovery from his illness (anyone know any more?).
The one thing I always noticed about Andy was how his faced also played every single note and it was how I knew that evrything he did came from within his soul. Ecstacy!
I don't know if the band will ever tour again but I have seen them on a few occasions and have been blown away and almost in tears.
You may wonder where this is going.......well I have to say, Camel and Todd have had a part in shaping who I am today....yes it is that profound.
I have never done drugs, been alcoholic or anything like that, not even addicted to concerts, but the one theme throughout my life is that I have been able to play their songs at almost anytime, whether down or not so down and it has kind of taken me on a high, which soothes and heals and mends whatever has been a trouble, and relaxed me at the end of the day.
I am 54 years of age and have loved having them by my side throughout those years.

It seems from the wonderful words you have all placed on this page that you have felt the same.
I hope I have contributed in some small way to the debate and I look forward to seeing more in the future.
Best wishes to you all.
Mikfox


Posted By: VariousArtist
Date Posted: February 02 2009 at 10:43
Always nice to see other people into Camel and glad to see these posts here.  In fact the other day after reading these I decided to listen to a few of my favourite Camel pieces on my drive to work.  Somewhere through "Airborn" I realized I had completely missed my exit off the freeway!  So I quickly figured out an alternative way to get around the issue I'd caused myself by going in a roundabout way via the next freeway exit -- only to find myself in the middle of the Snow Goose album going in the wrong direction.  And these are roads I know well.

So, let this be a warning:  Camel is bad for your sense of direction while driving!  You can literally lose yourself while listening

:-)


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 03 2009 at 02:54
Originally posted by Daniel1974nl Daniel1974nl wrote:

Have you by any chance seen the remastered and extended version of this movie

I think I just saw the normal version, I did not know there was another one. But I sure want to see that one, have to look for it then.

"And just did all this stuff because he had to...like it was flowing out of him....without taking any effort"

Yes, that is indeed the impression he gives. Well in the movie at least. But somehow it must be something like that, how else can someone be that talented at such a young age. It must be something he was born with. And than of course he had the right training.

"I think that usually the case with people that posess a highly talented skill"

But if someone has certain talents, it does not mean that all goes well, I guess. And there are probably other areas in life they suffer. Maybe in socialising, or in relations, or in creative expression. But others might not recognise this suffering. 

"Great Philosophers often suffer from a poor body and bad health conditions, Descartes, Spinoza, Kant, etc"

That is indeed also what I was thinking. Not that I know if it is true all the time, but I do think that often the focus is to much on one aspect, especially with those who are extremely talented in one area. And I guess balance is good but in order to stand out maybe it has to be a bit extreme.

"But as it appears in the movie atleast Beethoven was fully aware of what he could achieve...and indeed enlarged all imaginable borders....I ask you someone who is deaf...can compose something so amazing as the 9th Symphony"

Yes amazing, really unbelievable how someone can compose something like that, and being deaf while doing that, is beyond me. 

But I am very interested in the difference between the lives of composers like Beethoven en Mozart for example. But I am also very interested in the lives of philosophers. My focus has been for a while on the connection between Nietzsche and Wagner. I think that was a very interesting relationship and somehow I have the feeling it also was a very important point in human development as a whole. 





Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 03 2009 at 03:34
Originally posted by mikfox mikfox wrote:

They had this ability to connect in an ethereal way, that few other groups were able to. No gimmicks, costumes, strange publicity, just the honesty and integrity of what was in their hearts and souls. 

I am so glad you say that, it indeed is something I very much feel as such. Something in their music that speaks straight to your soul. Without knowing anything about them or their music. When I was searching on Youtube I came across a reaction of someone who said something like: “Latimer playing his heart out for the whole world to see”. I think it is something you indeed can see, hear and feel.


"but the one theme throughout my life is that I have been able to play their songs at almost anytime, whether down or not so down and it has kind of taken me on a high, which soothes and heals and mends whatever has been a trouble, and relaxed me at the end of the day."

I think it is just so amazing that music can do that. I must say, that is what fascinates me the most at this moment. How it is possible that music has that ability. 


It seems from the wonderful words you have all placed on this page that you have felt the same.”

Well, I certainly do. And it is just so amazing to hear others who feel the same way. 



Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 03 2009 at 03:47
Originally posted by VariousArtist VariousArtist wrote:

So, let this be a warning:  Camel is bad for your sense of direction while driving!  You can literally lose yourself while listening
:-)

I can so totally see what you mean! I do not have their music in my car, so fortunately it can not influence my driving. My sense of direction is bad enough without that. But I have the same when I listen to their music, especially if I am watching it on the dvd. I just can not stop listening. Someone used the word spellbound and that is how it feels, you just seem to loose controle.




Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: February 03 2009 at 05:54
Anthe,
 
Ok, lets continue...In the world of classical music sometimes there indeed has been created some extremely dramatc pieces of music.....Gorecki, Barber....yes....all of them...that came into my mind...I also like to advise you to get into some filmmusic...Im sure you will find some greatly interesting pieces there. I always was really fan of Hans Zimmers work....I guess for the obvious reason that it tends to be quite boombastic from time to time...and really can be touching and emotional as we'll....I stil remember I was sitting in the train once...when I was listening to Zimmer...and looked outside of the window and saw the white landscape and the snow....and the world almost looked surreal to me....so amazing....like a fairytale or something......Its indeed strange what music can do to you...the way you see the world, the way you feel....I remember when I was a teenager I listened alot to The Cure for example....not always good for your moods.
When it comes to Beethoven....many pieces are hard hard to get...and only available in Beethoven's Complete Collection...that is released by Deutsche Grammaphone....which I have (87 cd's)...Because alot of only exsisted on script DG some of the pieces were especially recorded for this box...so its essential for the completists....Things like his folksongs or stage performances, think are or rarely performed or never at al. And so it goes also for Beethoven's organ works. Beethoven is not the most famous person for Organ...but still he wrote a few pieces.....that are presented in this box....It looks really really nice, and really liked....but in general I rather listen Bach when I want to listen organ music. The only problem is that the price is rather shocking....first to find it now and second to pay it cos I think back then it costed me about 1000,- Euro. But with DG that is something you can expect...I once had the tought of buying the DG box of Chopin...which is much cheaper, but eventually I stopped collection after I purchased the Wagner Box.....which is also quite nice and all recorded in the Bayreuth Festspiellehalle, also very nice........Some things are truly amazing.....Wagner was a genious too.....I think that its really not that....easy to find a Opera composer of that calibre...I think no-one ever before or after wrote an opera of 16 hours that had to be spreaded over 4 evenings.....Only here too...The Wagner family only recognises every opera composed by him from The Flying Dutchmen....so the 3 before that....are usually seldom performed. Rienzi is one of them...and I think a truly great one....since the use of so much choire....
 
The relation between Nietzsche and Wagner is an interesting, but extremely complicated one. Especially because after a while Nietzsche took distance from Wagner and went his own way. It took Nietzsche a very long time to get away from his friend....and the reason is still not entirely known. Both had one same idol, and that was Schopenhauer, but after Schopenhauer (you should read their correspondence and the way Wagner praises him, and tells him how much the Ring is inspired by his work, while Schopenhauer thought it was total garbage) dissaproved Wagner I think something went wrong...and did it leave Nietzsche bedind....I always thought the problem is circulating around this...but apart from that there is also the question of Ant-Semitism.....Which Wagner cleary was, but Nietzsche only interpteted or made by others as such. On top of that its very difficult to plow through Nietzsche's work sometimes.
 
King Crimson's Epitaph is an amazing piece of work, I think its still one of my favorite songs too. And yes, the mood the song creates and the lyrics that are song are really really in balance with each other....the depression created by the lyrics is perfectly supported by the music, and specifically the mellotron...Its really different in relation to Genesis for that matter...cos it creates such a different mood.....the music is touching, sad and emotional....lots of mellotron as we'll but the lyrics are usually more cheering, or about surrealistic topics and imaginable worlds. Regarding camel......I must say that......I never really payed much attention to the lyrics...I think because I am so overwelmed by the music....that almost entirely determens the mood of the sound in general. And that is quite unique....
 
Now talking about Camel...I still need to look at this pieces you uploaded here, but at home my internetconnection is simply too slow for now...so last night I downloaded the tunes from You Tube, so I hope I can look at them tomorrow and come back to you with a judgement......I must say that writing about music really makes you think about music in a very different way. We prog lovers really like to relate everything to the old masters...so alot of reviews are like.....you can hear clearly the influence of...etc...and I like to try to find that out too, but I also like to think more and more in terms of what is it doing to me emotionally....or what will it do to other people...There is a whole range of people that really dislikes prog..songs are too complex, too long, too less vocals etc...but I think if you know the way, there also are so many songs that can make someone completely hooked right away.
 
I never wrote music myself. I never learned to play and only a little to read notes...But what I always imagine is that someone really musicall talented can hear in their head how it should sound when you do this or that...I only read a piece about Mozart and the way he was composing music...it appears that he started with one instrument and then kept on adding more and more untill he could hear an entire orchestra in his head and knew how it would sound if you do this or that...If you imagine someone is deaf and creates something as the 9th, as Beethoven then it must be that these peple can hear in their head how it must sound if you do this or that, add this or that instrument. And it is very different from the way people make music these days...cos the head is mainly replaced by a mixing desk.....and you just put everything you have under different lines and open a line, another one, begin to compare and see how it sounds......and if its not good you try another and so on. Now in progressive rock I think alot of stuff still comes out of jamming together...and often on the stage....Bands as King Crimson are notorious for that.. So classical music....is so different from all other genres.


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 05 2009 at 09:11
Originally posted by Daniel1974nl Daniel1974nl wrote:

I always was really fan of Hans Zimmers work.

Although I must have heard his name before, I did not know he wrote all that great filmmusic. I searched on Youtube and found some tributes to Hans Zimmer with parts of his work. Very impressive! I am certainly going to pay attention next time, to see who wrote the music for a movie I watch.

"Rienzi is one of them...and I think a truly great one....since the use of so much choire"

I must watch it sometime then. I must have it somewhere on tape because years ago I recorded several of Wagners opera's when there was a series on tv or so, with the intention to see them all once. But I never did yet. Somehow I just lost interest.  
 
"The relation between Nietzsche and Wagner is an interesting, but extremely complicated one. Especially because after a while Nietzsche took distance from Wagner and went his own way. It took Nietzsche a very long time to get away from his friend....and the reason is still not entirely known."

Well, I think this separation is the most interesting part. I am not sure if I all get it right and never read so much of them both, but to my understanding the essense was that Nietzsche thought that Wagner went back to Cristianity when he wrote Parsifal. And Nietzsche thought the search had to go inside of the individual en not in an external religion, well somthing like that.

"Both had one same idol, and that was Schopenhauer, but after Schopenhauer (you should read their correspondence and the way Wagner praises him, and tells him how much the Ring is inspired by his work, while Schopenhauer thought it was total garbage) dissaproved Wagner I think something went wrong"

I did not find that correspondence yet. But I did find a very interesting site about Schopenhauer's view on Music. I copied some really interesting parts at the bottom of this post.

"King Crimson's Epitaph is an amazing piece of work, I think its still one of my favorite songs too. And yes, the mood the song creates and the lyrics that are song are really really in balance with each other....the depression created by the lyrics is perfectly supported by the music, and specifically the mellotron"

Yes, I think it is so really fantastic, an unbelievable balance indeed between the music and the lyrics.

"but I also like to think more and more in terms of what is it doing to me emotionally....or what will it do to other people"

Yes, that is indeed what I am thinking the most now. How does that work, why can it have such an impact and what is happening when you hear certain music. Really interesting!

"it appears that he started with one instrument and then kept on adding more and more untill he could hear an entire orchestra in his head and knew how it would sound if you do this or that"

I always wondered if they start with one instrument or that there is already a sort of overall idea before the start about how it should sound as a whole.

"Now in progressive rock I think alot of stuff still comes out of jamming together...and often on the stage"

Which I think is also a very interesting way. I am not exactly a jazz fan, but the idea of creating music together seems somehow as a step beyond.

 


Some parts of Schopenhauer's Metaphysics of Music by Harlow Gale. 

http://users.belgacom.net/wagnerlibrary/articles/ney48218.htm - "Music is thus by no means like the other arts, the copy of the Ideas, but the copy of the will itself, whose objectivity these Ideas are. This is why the effect of music is much more powerful and penetrating than that of the other arts, for they speak only of shadows, but it speaks of the thing itself."

"The words are and remain for music a foreign addition, of subordinate value, for the effect of the tones is incomparably more powerful, more infallible, and quicker than that of words"

"The most direct is that for which music expresses the emotions of the will itself, and the most indirect that of the conceptions denoted by words. Where the language of the feelings is in question the reason does not willingly sit entirely idle. Music is certainly able with the means at its own disposal to express every movement of the will, every feeling; but by the addition of words we receive besides this the objects of these feelings, the motives which occasion them."

"If now we cast a glance at purely instrumental music, a symphony of Beethoven presents to us the greatest confusion, which yet has the most perfect order at its foundation, the most vehement conflict, which is transformed the next moment into the most beautiful concord."

"But in this symphony all human passions and emotions also find utterance; joy, sorrow, love, hatred, terror, hope, etc., in innumerable degrees, yet all, as it were, only in abstracto, and without any particularization; it is the mere form without the substance, like a spirit world without matter."

"therefore it is better to apprehend them in their immediacy and purity."

"According to all this we may regard the phenomenal world, or nature, and music as two different expressions of the same thing"-will, the fundamental world-stuff, expressing itself as nature indirectly and indistinctly as through Platonic Ideas, but immediately and subtilely in music as will-in-itself."

"Music, therefore, if regarded as an expression of the world, is in the highest degree a universal language, which is related indeed to the universality of concepts, much as they are related to the particular things."

"All possible efforts, excitements, and manifestations of will, all that goes on in the heart of man and that reason includes in the wide negative concept of feeling, may be expressed by the infinite number of possible melodies, but always in the universal, in the mere form, without the material, always according to the thing-in-itself, not the phenomenon; the inmost soul, as it were, of the phenomenon, without the body."

"This deep relation which music has to the true nature of all things also explains the fact that suitable music played to any scene, action, event, or surrounding seems to disclose to us its most secret meaning, and appears as the most accurate and distinct commentary upon it."

"For as we have said, music is distinguished from the other arts by the fact that it is not a copy of the phenomenon, or, more accurately, the adequate objectification of the will, but is the direct copy of the will itself, and therefore exhibits itself as the metaphysical to everything physical in the world, and as the thing-in-itself to every phenomenon."

"We might, therefore, just as well call the world embodied music as embodied will; and this is the reason why music makes every picture, and indeed every scene of real life and of the world, at once appear with higher significance, certainly all the more as the melody is analogous to the inner spirit of the given phenomenon."

"In the determinateness of the real, they represent that which music expresses in the universality of mere form, for melodies are to a considerable extent, like general concepts, an abstraction from the actual."

"been trying to bring out clearly that music expresses in a perfectly universal language, in a homogeneous material, mere tones, and with the greatest determinateness and truth, the inner nature, the in-itself of the world, which we think under the concept will, because will is its most direct manifestation."  




Posted By: Takeshi Kovacs
Date Posted: February 07 2009 at 05:45
Great website!

-------------
Open the gates of the city wide....
Check out my music taste: http://www.last.fm/user/TakeshiKovacs/


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 08 2009 at 05:01

I am so glad you liked it.

If only I could get my next blogpost done. I have about five drafts now, (I wrote more in one week than ever before), but none of them seem to be saying what I mean to say. 



Posted By: Thandrus
Date Posted: February 08 2009 at 06:19
Excellent website indeed!

And has anyone heard live version "Ice" on the bootleg from Rajaz Tour Concert in Chile? I'm not sure if I will hear playing as passionate as that again... That is way better than studio version, believe me...




Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 09 2009 at 03:59
Originally posted by Thandrus Thandrus wrote:

And has anyone heard live version "Ice" on the bootleg from Rajaz Tour Concert in Chile? 

I did not hear that one yet, the one I heard was from the dvd Coming of Age. But I agree that the studio version is nowhere near the live performance. The first time I heard it, I did not know what happend. Just incredible that someone can play as passionate as that.


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 09 2009 at 04:55

I finally got my next blogpost done. Did that take a lot of time and energy! But in the end I got more or less on paper what I meant to say. Only this time it takes a lot of words to say it.

http://www.camellive.com/2009/02/obsession-about-music -

Obsession about music

If I would follow the timeline of the concerts, the next video to describe would be the one with Preperation and Dunkirk of the Snow Goose. But that was not the video I wanted to continue with. I even had been hesitating to include that video. Not because of Dunkirk, as I think it is one of the best performances I heard of Dunkirk. I think it has a fantastic power in that concert and it also is amazing to see it played live.

The problem for me is with Preperation. And it is not at all that I do not like that one. I like it as it is played on the original album. It is a very contemplative piece of music which is also very essential in the totality of the whole Story of the Snow Goose. And I mostly like the more contemplative moments in music. I also love those in classical music. I love the adagio in a classical symphony, although somehow those parts are not so well integrated, they seem to be often apart from the rest of the symphony. And that is what I think a band as Camel is very good with. They have many contemplating moments and I feel they fit in very well.

A very good example is Lady Fantasy, which is at times a very energetic and outgoing piece, but it does also have a very withdrawn and contemplating part in the middle. And as much as I like the energetic parts, that part is my favourite. It never was so much before, but after seeing it on the dvd Moondances, I just could not stop listening and watching especially that part. At that moment it feels as if the music really comes from another world, as if it is just a matter of receiving. Really fascinating to see Andy Latimer connected to the world beyond as it seems.

So it is not that he is not capable of producing the beautiful adagio parts in the music of Camel, maybe even very hard to find anyone who is more capable then he is. He really lives his music while he is playing. And as it seems at times he is not even aware of his surroundings. He and his music are often one.

But what was it then what I did not like in Preperation as played on this video? Why did I not want to include it at first? As I think now, it has to do with the voice. For me it is very important to hear the ‘right voice’ with certain music. As much as I love to hear the voice of Maria Callas, I think it at its best in a passionate opera and not so much with Ave Maria. And Erbarme Dich is just beautiful with the right male voice and in my opinion not so much with a colourful female voice. And Im abendrot, one of the four last songs of Richard Strauss, is just perfect with the voice of Jessey Norman.

So it is not that I do not like his voice in general, I like his voice a lot and think it is often quiet, relaxing and effective. But it is just not the essense of his musical performance. And here with Preperation it feels to me that the voices must be more of a background, being an underlying sense of wholeness. And I personally like that part more on the album, where the voices are heard in the background.

Somehow this feels as a very important point. Important in the whole Story of the Snow Goose, but also important in the development of each individual. And besides that also an important point in the human development as a whole. As a point in time now, where individual expression is becoming essential.

This kept going around in my head, but I had no idea how I would write it down. I had no idea what words I could use, how to describe what I meant. So that point of preparation and Dunkirk seemed important in the Snow Goose. It is the battle where the main character Rhayader becomes a hero, but looses his life. And the battle is most impressive shown in Dunkirk.

But before Dunkirk, the decision for this action was made in Preparation. At least that was the idea I got from hearing the album of the Snow Goose. But here in the concert that message did not get through so well in my opinion. Not because of Dunkirk because how that was played here, was even better than on the album. It is really energetic and  impressive and gives a feeling of determination and power which perfectly comes together near the end. But Preparation was not convincing me here.

So I sort of knew what I wanted to talk about, but I could find no way of getting it into the right words. Not that I could not get anything on paper, the strange thing was that I typed pages full. Which is rather unusual for me, as I tend to compress what I want to say in writing, into just a few lines. And often even in just a few words. But although I wrote a lot, I just could not get on paper what I wanted to say, the words just did not seem the right one, did not express what I meant. And it was just so very frustrating. At times this week I thought, why am I so fascinated with this music at the moment. What do I care. Just leave it alone. But I just could not, I had to listen to their music over and over again. And this time I just had to understand why I am so obsessed.

Fortunally I also got to read on an online music forum. I got there because I found out that the music Camel makes, especially their early years, was called Progressive Rock. And the music of Camel fell in the category of ’symphonic progressive rock’ or in short ’symphonic prog’.
And being on that forum I noticed that I am not the only one with an obsession for music. There are many out there who have the same. And it is just absolutely amazing to talk about that. And while talking about it (well reading and writing) it becomes a little more clear to me what music can do. Not that I can find all the right words at this point, but I feel I am getting somewhere now.

One very good lead came from a group which is considered the basic of all progressive rock, King Crimson. Before I came to the Prog Archives forum I never heard of them. But many people often referred to them, and so I got to listen to some of their work. And liked what I heard. Not just interesting, but some of it also very intriguing and catching music, although most is in general to experimental for me personal.

But then I heard several people mention King Crimson’s Epitaph as their all time favourite. I got curious and went searching on Youtube to see if I could find it. Well, I did… and it just blew me away. From the very first seconds I was impressed. The combination of the extremely dark music, the screaming picture from the album cover, the voice, the fantastic instrumentation but above all the overwhelming lyrics.

I have this thing with lyrics, I hardly ever listen to them. At best they are good, but even then the music is so much more important for me. Because if that does not so much for me, if I have no desire to listen to it at least 10 times in a row, I just consider it music I like. But on the other hand there is music I am obsessed with, music I want to hear over and over again. Often I do not understand the lyrics (3th symphony of Gorecki) or they are religious (Schubert’s Ave Maria, Mozart’s Requiem and Bach’s Erbarme Dich) or actually mean nothing and is a made up language (Lisa Gerrard from Dead can Dance). Or with the music of Pink Floyd, which I like along with the lyrics. But still the music is much more important to me. And with Camel I also like the non lyrical vocals a lot. So somehow the meaning of the lyrics was not of the most important. Much more important was if it sounds perfectly coherent with the music.

But then I found that video of King Crimson’s Epitaph with the lyrics. I read the lyrics while hearing the music and was just shocked. There was this text which is from the late 60s and it had just the subject I was thinking about for such a long time now. The whole text was extremely intriguing, but the most I was impressed by the middle part, because that is what I was thinking about the most.

Between the iron gates of fate, the seeds of time were sown.
And watered by the deeds of those, who know and who are known.
Knowledge is a deadly friend, if no one sets the rules.
The fate of all mankind I see, is in the hands of fools.

To me this bears the essence of human development. The free will we all have in essence. But which is only effective in the right mix of action, skills, knowledge and responsibility. Well something along those lines.

That is what I see as essential in the development of the music of Camel. And that is what I think I felt on my first concert in 1984. So I thought about writing my next blogpost about the video that started my obsession with their music. And I knew for sure it was somewhere at the concert of Pressure Points.

Although I was listening to their music for a few years at that time, and it was more or less the only music I listened to, it did not have a real meaning to me until then. It were just a lot of albums I happened to love. But then I got to the concert. The concert was in 1984 and it had a very huge impact on me. And I have always wondered why. Was it the fact that it was my first concert? Was it the fact that it was in a relative small space with very loud music? Or was it the music itself?

When I found all the videos on Youtube slowly I became aware of what it was, that impressed me the most.

First I thought, it was Stationary Traveller, because that is absolutely one of my favourites. Then I thought it was Lady Fantasy, because I remember very clearly that I was very surprised to hear it. They played Long Goodbyes (which has one of the most amazing guitarsolo’s at the end) and I thought the concert was over. But to my surprise the best (at that time) had yet to come. Parts of the Snow Goose and Lady Fantasy. Which was really fantastic.

But then I got the dvd. And from the very moment Pressure Points started I knew that was the one that had the most impact. On the album Stationary Traveller, Pressure Points is a relatively short track. I like it a lot, but it really is nothing compared to the live version. When I heard it again now, it immediately pulled me back in and I was totally overwhelmed. It has an inescapable sphere, it draws you in and there is no turning back.

So I realised, that there was the point where it started for me. That moment where I realised what music can do. But still, although I felt clearly what it did, I had no way of describing it in words. And it did nothing else than going on in my head, trying to find the right words. There was a connection with Preparation and Dunkirk of The Snow Goose, and there was a strong connection with the live version of Ice. 

Ice that I must have heard many times before, because I immediately recognised it when I heard the video as it was uploaded on Youtube. But it was so much more impressive now I heard the video with the live performance, it is so really is so incredible powerful and impressive. I heard someone use the word haunting. And that was exactly how I felt the impact, having a deeply disturbing effect. And that is the same I felt with Epitaph of King Crimson.

But here I did not only hear, see and feel it, my brain could also take it in. And it very much gave words to my perception of the music. Which as I see it, is a very important point in the process of the human development as an individual, but also in the process of human development as a moment in time. This moment in time.

I will try to put my thinking about that it in a more structured and (I hope) more logical blogpost, but here I first will try to describe the video of Pressure Points.

The video is from the dvd Pressure Points and it does not have the bright colours and the amazing camerawork of theMoondances dvd. Which is a pity of course, but on the other hand it does very well fit the sphere. The sphere of beautiful music in a very dense atmosphere. And somehow I just very much love that combination.

The video here starts with a sort of added story on the dvd, which all looks very dated now. But somehow it does fit the feeling of being torn apart. It is given in the form of the divided Berlin just after the second world war, and the concert was in the the time a few years before the fall of the Berlin wall. But as dated as it is, I think it is a very essential theme, not just for the world a that time, but also for each individual. The struggle between the individual autonomy and the oppression of the outside world. And about how you might want to avoid that struggle, because it is just to difficult at times to deal with.

But it is easy to just skip the intro and start with Pressure Points. It is a much extended version, much longer and much more intense than the version on the album.

The start as I feel it is a very dark drum with the extremely crying of the guitar. Very expressive and outgoing with a firm base of the drums, starting more slowly, but increasing the speed as it goes on. Then the keyboard produce an erratic and very speedy sound which seems to even further speed up the guitar and lets it produce some extra creativity.

But then the energy completely changes, and the bassguitar takes over, which gives an extremely depressing, dense but at the same time incredible beautiful atmosphere. And it definitely sets the tone for the whole piece. This goes on for a while and Andy’s guitar is only occasionally highlighted in the back ground. Then his guitar comes in more strong and more melodic, but a the same time very melancholic.

The next is a very close picture of his playing and you can just watch the searching for every next note, as if there is not direction any more, as if the rest has to be invented yet, there seems no way out of this, it is so difficult to escape from this depressive feeling because it is so mesmerizing and comforting, but at the same time there is this feeling of need for an expression. But then he seems to give up, and what you hear seems a very desperate cry, which really gives the feeling of giving in. A complete surrender, there is really no way out, there is nothing left to do then to accept.

Then the guitar stops and the keyboards take over. A real special moment as you hear the leading keyboard give a high and melodic melody, repeated again and again. But at the same time there is a very, complete opposite dark and deep sounding keyboard complementing it. And this goes on for a while, but nothing the dark and deep can do to stop thecheering melody.

Then, as if the guitar has been listening to the repeating sounds, he steps in. As he has listened and found a ground to react on. And starts to play his own melody now, perfectly backed up by the ongoing melody of the keyboard, and the bassguitar that seems to acompagny him now. 
Then the guitar seems to have found a new way of expressing himself, but this time much more in harmony with the other instruments.

What also impresses me very much here are the drums. It is also a very dense and compact sound, which also gives very much the idea of suppressive and coherent sound. And that starts already with the beginning, and it stays in the background a while and continues the rhythm, although it goes up if the guitar speeds up. But it stays quiet with the bassguitar. As if there is no need there for the drum at that time. The bassguitar seems to represent the soul that has not much volume, but sooths and is a very attractive and appealing serene sound.

And this is the music that gives a certain feeling which is similar with the live version of Ice  and King Crimson’s Epitaph. They all have it in a different way, but somehow the theme seems the same. The intensity, the inner conflict, the density, the despair and the darkness. But also the enormous power and beauty.

Somehow I see those themes also in the Snow Goose (Preparation / Dunkirk). But there it is a battle in the outside world (Dunkirk). Here with these three the battle is the inner conflict, the conflict with the use of a free will. A free will that wants to express itself and needs the space to do so. But that space is limited. There is an outside world that oppresses and limiteds. And possible to the extend that the individual gets paralysed and in despair will give up.

But the beauty of the music of Camel is that there is always a way out as it seems, an immedate shift of emotion if needed. A creative solution to any given situation. But at the same time the realisation of a world beyond the individual and take full responsibility for any conscious action. I think that was somehow the message I got when I was at that concert all those years ago.



Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: February 11 2009 at 04:15

We are beginning to touch the core of what music all about and that is Aesthetics........Its really time Im going to read some more Kant, Hegel...and yes Schopenhauer...I was wondering where this specific essay is a part of....I think I have most of Schopenhauers works.....but as far as I know his thoughts on music are more or less scattered over his works.....But the quotations you gave indeed are truly interesting...The other great philosopher that wrote considerably about music is Adorno...especially in his Aesthetic Theory...but also on his Essays on music...that are already so long on my list by now....on http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Main_Page - http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Main_Page  there are alot of essays of Schopenhauer but alot of them are also published in Dutch in Parerga und Paralipomena and the second volume of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_World_as_Will_and_Representation - The World as Will and Representation  which unfortunatly both.....I have not here right now.

Music can bring you in higher spheres....change your attitude and even the way you see the world. A while ago I had a long talk aout this with one of my best friends. We both agreed that our ideasabout the state, the critical attitude towards our soceity, the thing governments do to people, fooling them around, beating around the bush......preaching hollow ideals....all communicated by massmedia, that turns us all into cardboard opersonalities that have very much idenity of our own.....We have become Sheep...we are Amused To Death....all started with the listening of Pink Floyd......In the first place because I gave Animals and Amused To Death a few spins too much...But later on I began to realize it was also a album from which I said that I never liked it and that is Dark Side Of The Moon....songs as Time or Money, I think turned me into a studious person that absoluty vulgarises any form of materialism if its not contributing to the development and awareness of what we are as human beings. So lyrics can have an enormous influence on people and the way we all see the world. And I truly believe that Roger Waters wrote them for this and only this reason alone...Now with Pink Floyd I saw that amediatly......and saw right away that he had something important to tell.....However with lots of other bands I never had this feeling...The (now clearly) apocalyptic message of Epitaph for example is not something I began to see untill I was pointed to that here and in some other ways....Often perhaps lyrics are not that direct and are most of the time cryptical...have double layers and tell something very serious while giving the impression its been told inwithin a fairytale discours. Especially the lyrics of Peter Gabriel that he wrote in his Genesis days are coming to mind here. It is going to take us years to unraffle the true meaning of this words and stories.

Now Camel is a typical band with which I never really payed my attention to the lyrics....sometimes I wonder why that is...why do you listen more to the lyrics with one band while absolutely not to the other.....id that because the vocals are not that good....Perhaps in some occasions, but Greg Lake's voice with Epitaph is absolutely bautifull and almost equally dramatic and hauting as the music itself...And Andrew's Voice is...equally beautifull....In the begindays it was often someone else that was doing the vocalparts while Andy focussed on the guitar...however...later more and more he became the prominent singer of the band as others left......often the version with him as a singer I think are often awsome, but yet I never really asked myself the question what where his lyrics were all about (with the possible exception of Harbour Of Tears ()which is quite obvious) and Rajez (that I think is refering to T.H. Lawrence and his book, the Seven Pilars Of Wisdom).....Perhaps another reason is that sometimes music is too complexand you simply don't understand what there is been told and you don't really tend to take the effort. Did anyone for example ever did a serious attempt to understand Jon Anderson's lyrics....what Takes From A Topographic Ocean is really about....I must say....this still leaves me puzzled...and in case of King Crimson....often only already the titles are so obscure that any attempt you try to make is pointless, even before you start. With titles as 'Mother Holds The Candle Steady While I Shave The Chicken's Lip.' you can only conclude that lyricwise we should not always take bands all to serious. I remember a special tour that Billy Joel did in America, which was called 'An Evening Of Questions And answers'...in this he toured universities and just took a sit on a stage and explained a song to the audience (usually the ones that were requested)... One of these has been added to his Greatest Hits 4cd box, where the 4 cd is dedicated to that)....and I still remember the last song of that cd 'The Piano Man' where someone asked him to explain this song...and it appeared that he was just describing what he saw around him....and nothing more.....and there is no deeper meaning to it.....'The regular crowd shuffles in, there is an old man sitting next to me making love to his tonic and gin, John is at the bar, the waitressis practicing politics, the bussiness man slowly gets stones....etc. So sometimes we tend to believe there is more to it than writers tend to believe.....they wrote this in a specific state of mind....and can't recall that specific state.....And have no idea why especially this did make him so famous.....

The other reason I think, and that one is much more asumable in my opinion is that....sometimes music is so extremely overwelming (or a certain instrument) that it is pushing everything else to the background. In case of Camel this is in my opinion the case....The guitar sometimes (I already gave the example of Irish Air before) is so extremely overblowing that everything else fades........With King Crimson the same effect is achieved by the Mellotron....and in many ways the same can be said of Genesis in the early days...The guitarsound of Camel often leaves you completely devastated and I think....simply because Andy is one with his music and has a talent to squeeze that one extremely emotional note out of his guitar and then one after the other....perhaps a note that is rarely been touched by others, or lesser high.......let the notes sing longer......or they inhale lesser deep......neither way it gives indeed a very specific sound that you can only find with Camel..........and it makes especially this music....so touching....
 
I also liked your idea of comparing Lady Fantasy wuith a small symphony.....that is indeed interesting...the middle part is very slow.....and can be seen as the Adagio and so on....I think you can make this comparative with alot of other songs...or perhaps even alot of songs as Ice for example rather is a complete Adagio.
 
When I read what you wrote about Pressure Points and the live version.......I listened very carefully to the live version and the moment where the music slows down...only bass is left where Andy is jaming over......WOW!!!!!
 
 


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 12 2009 at 10:06

Daniel, I was writing a response to your post, which was getting long and not very structured, when I looked up Adorno on Wikipedia, as I had I never heard of him. Wow, does he have some interesting things to say about individualism, creativity, potential and manipulation of taste.

And when I searched further I found what seems to be the essence of this Aesthetic theory. Very, very interesting. I do not totally get it yet, but I have the feeling it says what I was trying to write down in a very chaotic way.  

 "Adorno asserts the 'priority of the object in art', or what is called a materialist aesthetic, in contrast to the idealist aesthetic of Kant which privileges the subject over the object. For Kant, the experience of art is a product of the perceptions of the subject. For Adorno, the art object and the aesthetic experience of the art object contain a truth-content. Truth-content is a cognitive content 'which is not exhausted either by the subjective intentions of its producers or by the subjective responses of its consumers', and that may be revealed through analysis. Whereas Kant conceives of beauty as a subjective experience, Adorno suggests that beauty mediates between subject and object. Beauty is contained in the cognitive or truth-content of works of art. As Adorno writes in Aesthetic Theory: 'All beauty reveals itself to persistent analysis'. But works of art 'are not merely inert objects, valued or known by the subject; rather, they have themselves a subjective moment because they are themselves cognitive'. It is in the shared experience of object and subject, the joint analysis, that beauty is revealed."

Whole article here: http://www.english.emory.edu/Bahri/Adorno.html -



Posted By: Chris S
Date Posted: February 13 2009 at 03:05
Kind of getting back to the initial thread, sorry not derailing what is said above, I agree ' Lunar Sea' is very much like a conceptual ' Snow Goose" all on it's own. It is almost like a mini concept album within Moonmadness, the lunar droning soundscapes fading out...incredible stuff! I am referring more to the studio work, sorry about that. I would agree that ' Spirit of the Water' , possibly Barden's finest two minutes and ' Airborn' are vintage songs. Doug Ferguson's bass on this song was seldom eclipsed. So was Moonmadness showing Camel as their peak, creatively speaking? Probably so BUT I would suggest that ' First light' from Rain Dances even stretched their creative peak further. The album suffered ever so slightly after that....how could any song improve on the first track.
 
I need to see more Camel live work on DVD, the master CD re-releases shed more light but a particulalry great live album is ' Gods Of Light; especially " God of Light Revisited" and the reliable ' Arubaluba'. Great to see this thread so alive and some interesting theories outthereSmile


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<font color=Brown>Music - The Sound Librarian

...As I venture through the slipstream, between the viaducts in your dreams...[/COLOR]


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: February 14 2009 at 02:36
Originally posted by Chris Stacey Chris Stacey wrote:

So was Moonmadness showing Camel as their peak, creatively speaking? Probably so BUT I would suggest that ' First light' from Rain Dances even stretched their creative peak further.

Personally I do indeed think that Moonmadness was their creative highlight, but then I am referring mainly to the Moonmadness concert as I watched it on the dvd Moondances. I think it was an absolute perfect reflection of their creativity at that time, in that setting.

But I also think that the dvd Coming of Age is another absolute highlight, which was the result of a process of years, starting with Raindances.

The concert Raindances is also on the dvd Moondances and it is just absolutely sensational to see the difference between the two concerts on that dvd. There is only one year in between but it is really totally different. Where one is confident, powerful, coherent and strong, but at the same time sensitive and perceiving, seems the other in everything the opposite (although also amazing to watch). And I am mainly talking about the live performance here, because I do not think I ever heard the album Raindances as a whole. And as it seems that album is for some really a highlight, which I can totally see. It is just so totally different, especially the working together as a band. But I do think that it was the basic of something that finally would grow into something like Harbour of Tears and a concert like Coming of Age.

When I got that dvd a few weeks ago I was mainly fixed on what I already knew, and Harbour of Tears itself sounded a bit odd to me at first. But I heard it a few times now and I think it is absolutely fantastic. But I think it just has to be listened to as a whole. It are really not seperate tracks (although there are a few that I just had to listen to a whole lot of times in a row for a while, one was Under the Moon, it is less than 2 minutes but I listened to that for more than an hour, I think it is just so very moving). But I think it all fits so perfectly well together, it is as one ongoing movement, going from one emotion into another with no effort as it seems.

But the fact that I am mainly fixed on the dvd's is that I just need to see things. I need to see what instrument is playing, who is playing it and I just need to see facial expressions and body language. Well, I all have to see that in order to understand it and make it into a story myself.

It really amazed me to read all the reviews here that could describe all those albums. Before I watched the dvd's it actually just were sounds to me that I happened to like a lot. But I had really no idea what was what. Maybe that just needs practise, or maybe it is the difference between men and women, or maybe it is the difference that some are better in perceiving audial (is that the word) and others in visual.

Funny by the way that you seem to mention a few that I hardly know. I listened again to Arubaluba and I actually like it a lot. God of Light I never heard so I went looking. I did not find it yet, but got totally distracted by some of Rajaz, especially Lawrence. Boy do I want that album now.

But it is also special that you mention the bass of Ferguson. Somehow that is one of those sounds that I never really noticed. But lately I am more and more noticing how important that is in what I like so much about Camel. But again, in order to be aware of that, I just have to see it first. Strange maybe for others, especially on a music forum.



Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: March 20 2009 at 02:24

At last I got another blogpost done, this time about the timeline of the band, after trying to get one about Ice and one about Dust and Dreams. Enough drafts so far but nothing that makes much sense yet. This one is as I see the development of the band until the concert Coming of Age

http://www.camellive.com/2009/03/evolution-of-the-band/ -

One of the most remarkable things about Camel, is their evolution over time. In the early 70s the name Camel was chosen by the four members of the band, Peter Bardens (keyboard), Doug Ferguson (bass), Andy Ward (drums) and Andrew Latimer (guitar). In that setting they made four albums, the first one called Camel, a good debute album, but not yet a coherent whole. The second, Mirage was already more structured and had just a few, but rather long tracks. The next album was their first concept album which was based on a book by Paul Gallico. The Snow Goose is their most famous album which they performed live with the London Symphony Orchestra in 1975.

The next and at the same time last album in this setting was Moonmadness. Moonmadness was released in 1976 and the tour they did was recorded and, just recently, released on the dvd Moondances. That dvd featured their strength in that setting, where they played truly amazing, confident, strong and breathtaking some of their best work at that time. They were very good together as they each had their role. The sound was very coherent and all seemed to work just perfectly together. One song transforms into another as if it was one ongoing movement, even if they were from separate albums (Mirage, The Snow Goose and Moonmadness). A true highlight and amazing to watch, with the stunning camerawork (especially Lunar Sea and Lady Fantasy) and fantastic bright colours in a dark background.

But at the same time it was the end of that setting. After that tour, the bassist Doug Ferguson would leave the band. And they would start a new road as a band. On the next five albums (Raindances, Breathless, I can see your house from here, Nude, The Single Factor)  appeared many musicians. Some of them just played on the albums, while others also went on tour.

And the sound was very different at times, one album better than the other, but all of them had some very good tracks which contained the characteristic emotions, expressions, structure and tight playing of the band. And while they were touring, which they did a lot, they also played their older songs which evolved as they changed settings.

The next coherent setting was at the same time their last for a long time. It was the Pressure Points tour with the promotion of the album Stationary Traveller in 1984. Which was very much in line with the phase of the band. After that tour it all would more or less fall apart and not until the early 90s before it would rise again in a new and independent form. But Pressure Points itself was a very strong and fascinating concert. The members at that time were Ton Scherpenzeel (keyboard), Colin Bass (bass), Andrew Latimer (guitar, flute, vocals), Chris Rainbow (vocals) and Paul Burgess (drums).

If the timeline of the band would be compared with a symphony, this concert could be called the adagio. And the track Stationary Traveller the centre of that adagio. It gives the feeling of a journey that is forced to contemplate and reflect to come to the conclusion that independence is needed, but at the same time the realisation of the responsibility that comes with that. In there I hear the inescapable struggle and darkness but at the same time amazing beauty and strength, which is reflected in the whole concert.

So the next phase is that of a band independent of the pressure of record companies. The first album in that phase is Dust and Dreams which perfectly reflects their development. The central theme of the album appears to be the energy that is needed to start this whole new phase, together with the overwhelming struggle of life. The band at that point had some remaining members along with new ones but the feeling of the sound, although new in a way, still had the same power and melancholic beauty.

But the band did not stop evolving as is clearly shown in the Coming of Age concert in 1997. During that concert, in the second half, they played the whole of their album Harbour of Tears. That album was another concept album and there the strength of the tracks being more a part of the whole. All emotions seem to pass in less than an hour, follow each other in such a natural way. Latimers guitar sounds so very powerful but he just perfectly knows how to handle it and places every use at just the right place.

But before that, in the first half of the concert, they played ’some old favourites’ of which some where just unbelievably fantastic. Some where better (in my opinion of course) in their other concerts, but some where just so very good here. Drafted, Docks and Beached from the album Nude, and also Hymn to Her from the album ‘I can see your house from here’. But best of all, also from that album, was Ice. That is performed here in a way that is beyond words, so really very good. I was trying to get a blog post done about that video, but I just could not get into words what happens here. I will keep trying, but am not sure it will be possible to find the right words for that.

I am also trying to get a blogpost done about the album Dust and Dreams because I was so very moved by the book and the movie where the album is based on, The Grapes of Wrath. Reading a character analysis of Tom, the main character of the novel, I was really fascinated by his development during the story and found some interesting similarities with Rhayader, the main character of The Snow Goose.



Posted By: Pekka
Date Posted: March 21 2009 at 02:32
Originally posted by Anthe Anthe wrote:

The next and at the same time last album in this setting was Moonmadness. Moonmadness was released in 1976 and the tour they did was recorded and, just recently, released on the dvd Moondances. That dvd featured their strength in that setting, where they played truly amazing, confident, strong and breathtaking some of their best work at that time. They were very good together as they each had their role. The sound was very coherent and all seemed to work just perfectly together. One song transforms into another as if it was one ongoing movement, even if they were from separate albums. A true highlight and amazing to watch, especially with the stunning camerawork and fantastic bright colours.

I'm a pretty dedicated Camel fan, but I found the Moonmadness tour part of Moondances to be pretty disappointing. And why? Because of the lazy camerawork and dark colours. I don't think I saw Doug Ferguson in a close up for one second, sometimes I got a quick glance at him when they were shooting Andy Ward. But yeah, the songs are of course brilliant. The Rain Dances era gig is filmed so much better.


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http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=42652" rel="nofollow - It's on PA!


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: March 21 2009 at 06:13
Originally posted by Keppa4v Keppa4v wrote:

 
I'm a pretty dedicated Camel fan, but I found the Moonmadness tour part of Moondances to be pretty disappointing. And why? Because of the lazy camerawork and dark colours. I don't think I saw Doug Ferguson in a close up for one second, sometimes I got a quick glance at him when they were shooting Andy Ward. But yeah, the songs are of course brilliant. The Rain Dances era gig is filmed so much better.

Yes, I think I can see what you mean. And I agree about the dark colours. But what I personally like so much about that, is the centre which often has one bright colour at the time. So then there is a close up of eg the arm of Peter Bardens playing and that part is one colour while the surrounding is almost invisible because it is just dark. And it is also often done with the drums. They have one or just a few colours at the time and the surrounding is again dark. 

And it never gives an overview of what is happening, the camera switches from spot to spot as it seems. So I can totally see why anyone would prefere the other concert on the dvd, because that indeed is so much more visable as a totality. 

But personally I just love the way they filmed this one. Especially some parts like in Lunar Sea where the camera is zooming out and you get a great view on Latimers playing, a sort of reflection in the drums, a mix of images and colours. Or several times with Lady Fantasy with breathtaking close ups and images and colours strangely mixed up all the time, especially near the end. I so much like how they did that, just amazing. 

But I also think it is a real pity that Doug Ferguson is hardly visible. If you didn’t know better you would think there were just three musicians. I guess that is especially because of the darkness that surrounds the highlighted centre each time. 

Well, maybe it is kind of like the difference between an abstract and a realistic painting, where you might prefer one above the other, something like that. 



Posted By: Daniel1974nl
Date Posted: March 26 2009 at 03:08

The are some new released of old Camel albums announced. Following are the travklists of these new versions. And........as it seems....there will be a live version of Air Born included in the new version of Moondances.

Camel albums in nieuw jasje

Er komen binnenkort deluxe versies op de markt van de albums ”Music Inspired By The Snowgoose” en “Moonmadness” van de prog grootheid Camel.  Tevens kun je een expanded versie van “Raindances” tegemoet zien. De nieuwe uitgaven worden rijkelijk voorzien van live-opnamen. Deze versies worden alle uitgebracht door  http://www.universalmusic.nl/ - Universal Music .

Andrew Latimers eerste concert

The Snowgoose (disc 1)
1. The Great Marsh
2. Rhayader
3. Rhayader Goes To Town
4. Sanctuary
5. Fritha
6. The Snow Goose
7. Friendship
8. Migration
9. Rhayader Alone
10. Flight Of The Snow Goose
11. Preparation
12. Dunkirk
13. Epitaph
14. Fritha Alone
15. La Princesse Perdue
16. The Great Marsh - Instrumental Reprise Version
17. Flight Of The Snow Goose - Instrumental Single Edit
18. Rhayader - Instrumental Single Edit
19. Rhayader Goes To Town - ‘Live At The Marquee’ Instrumental Version
20. The Snow Goose/Freefall - ‘Live At The Marquee’ Instrumental Version

The Snowgoose - BBC Radio One ‘In Concert’ (disc2)
1. Rhayader Goes To Town
2. Sanctuary
3. The Snow Goose
4. Migration
5. Rhayader Alone
6. Flight Of The Snow Goose
7. Preparation
8. Dunkirk
9. Epitaph
10. La Princesse Perdue
11. The Great Marsh
12. Selections from The Snow Goose - BBC TV ‘Old Grey Whistle Test’

Moonmadness (disc 1)
1. Aristillus (Instrumental Version)
2. Song Within A Song
3. Chord Change (Instrumental Version)
4. Spirit Of The Water
5. Another Night (Album Version)
6. Air Born
7. Lunar Sea (Instrumental Studio Version)
8. Another Night (Single Version)
9. Spirit Of The Water (Demo Version)
10. Lunar Sea (Live At The Hammersmith Odeon)

Moonmadness (disc 2)
1. Song Within A Song Live At The Hammersmith Odeon
2. Excerpt From The Snow Goose (Live At The Hammersmith Odeon)
3. Air Born (Live At Hammersmith Odeon)
4. Chord Change (Live At Hammersmith Odeon)
5. The White Rider (Live At Hammersmith Odeon)
6. Preparation/Dunkirk (Live At The Hammersmith Odeon Instrumental Version)
7. Another Night (Live At Hammersmith Odeon)
8. Lady Fantasy (Live At Hammersmith Odeon)

Raindances
1. First Light
2. Metrognome
3. Tell Me
4.  Highways Of The Sun
5. Unevensong
6. One Of These Days I’ll Get An Early Night
7. Elke
8. Skylines
9. Rain Dances
10. Highways Of The Sun (Single Version)
11. First Light (BBC “Sight & Sound” In Concert)
12. Metrognome (BBC “Sight & Sound” In Concert)
13. Unevensong (BBC “Sight & Sound” In Concert)
14. Skylines (BBC “Sight & Sound” In Concert)
15. Highways Of The Sun (BBC “Sight & Sound” In Concert)
16. One Of These Days I’ll Get An Early Night (BBC “Sight & Sound” In Concert)



Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: March 29 2009 at 06:13

Thanks for the links, great to see there are so many live recordings on it. I see on disc 2 of the Snow Goose the excerpts by the Old Grey Whistle Test. I love those!

In my email notification of this post (strange, not here) I saw the link to Progwereld, but it did not work. I still got there by the homepage  http://www.progwereld.org/ - Great site btw. 

So it seems that they did Air Born also live in the Hammersmith Odeon. Hope indeed that it will also get on the new dvd version, and that they will also get Song within a Song and Spirit of the Water on it, well at best the whole concert of course.

The cd from Raindances might be the same one that is also on that dvd, I think that was from the BBC concert Sight and Sound as well.   

Edit: link was not working so I changed into the homepage. 



Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: April 08 2009 at 16:45

Much to my surprise I found the Deluxe Editions of The Snow Goose and Moonmadness and the Remastered Raindances on Deezer to listen for free. As I was not sure how legal that was, I looked at Wikipedia but it seems that Deezer has an agreement with Universal in some way.

But one moment the albums are clickable and the next moment they are not. Now it seems that you have to be logged in to be able to listen to them, while other albums are also available if you are not logged in.

Anyway I have listened to all of them now and am especially surprised with the BBC recordings of the Snow Goose. That sounds very special, sort of with an echo. Very prominent guitar and very clean somehow.

And further I am very glad to hear Air Born live on the Moonmadness album. And other tracks that are not on the Moondances dvd.

And it is for the first time I heard the album Raindances, more jazzy than prog but also great to hear.

Well, all in all many hours of Camel while working on the computer!

This is the link (hope it works) and it are the first 3 albums. http://www.deezer.com/en#music/artist/12826 -



Posted By: micky
Date Posted: April 08 2009 at 17:12
^ yes.. I've read of these sites.   The counterattack against illegal downloading....  it is legal... the companies are getting paid everytime you download something from my understanding.  Ads supposedly pay for it... enjoy it while you can. Several have already gone under... google ads don't put Ferrari's in artist's driveways...  charging $20 for a $3 piece of silicon or whatever a CD is made of does. 

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[QUOTE=Nogbad_The_Bad]Christ you talk a lot of crap.[/QUOTE]


Posted By: Anthe
Date Posted: April 09 2009 at 03:37
Originally posted by micky micky wrote:

the companies are getting paid everytime you download something from my understanding.  Ads supposedly pay for it

I was indeed wondering how that works, but somehow it is, what is called, streaming music. So you just play it without downloading. Earlier I thought there was a possibility to also download, but I do not see that now anymore.

Maybe that is the whole idea then, that you get to the site everytime you want to listen to the music and see the adds.

But the collection on Deezer is really huge. Pink Floyd for one has more than 30 albums there, although on some there are just a few tracks.

But it got me really wondering how it works, how legal and ethical it all is.  




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