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Camel - Never Let Go CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.45 | 160 ratings

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Symphonic Team
5 stars I'm never going to let go of this!

Dust And Dreams was the best Camel album for a very, very long time. Indeed, it has become one of my all time favourite Camel albums. It is performed here in its entirety on this fantastic live album.

The set list is divided into two parts and is basically the very best of Camel on two discs. The material ranges all the way from their debut album up till Dust And Dreams. All songs are given magnificent performances. Latimer's guitar work is better than ever. His sustained guitar notes sends chills down my spine - such emotion he puts into his playing! He can make a guitar speak like very few people can.

The first part of the set consists of classic Camel. Basically all the songs here are better than on the studio recordings. The opening Never Let Go is significantly different from the original and all other live versions I have heard of this classic song. It is a very stripped down, acoustic version. Very brave to start the concert like this!

The selection from The Snow Goose significantly benefits from being played live; it has more power than the original version. Many of the songs are somehow given new life here. Ice, an instrumental from the I Can See Your House From Here album, is simply breathtaking.

The second set consists of Dust And Dreams (plus an encore including the eternal Lady Fantasy). The Dust And Dreams songs sound even better here than they did on the studio album, primarily because of the improved drum sound. The studio version had those stale 80's sounding drums. Here the drumming is more lively and "genuine" for lack of a better word.

If I must point out a weak link in this album it has to be the keyboards. They could be more organic and "real". Especially on Lady Fantasy where the organ is replaced by electronic keyboards. Doesn't quite fit this song, I think. But the amazing guitar work overshadows any lack in the keyboard department.

I will not say too much about Dust And Dreams here. See the reviews for the studio album. But I can say as much as this though: It is a stunning conceptual masterpiece, very emotional and Mother Road is a great rock song with an excellent guitar melody. Even if I like this live version very much, I wouldn't say that it makes the studio album redundant.

If all you know from Camel is their first four studio albums, this double live album is an excellent place to start if you want to explore some later Camel stuff. However, I would say that the Coming Of Age live album (which is available both as a double CD and a live DVD) is slightly better than this. The old Live Record from the 70's, on the other hand - great though it is! - doesn't even come close to any of these two, and both Never Let Go and Coming Of Age are extremely highly recommended.

SouthSideoftheSky | 5/5 |


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