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Camel - Never Let Go CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.45 | 192 ratings

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4 stars Released to coincide with Camel's 20th anniversary and the promotion of "Dust and Dreams", "Never Let Go" is an expansive and ambitious live effort. The first disk provides a more than capable summation of prior classics, some of which are real gems not heard in a live context previously, such as "Echoes" and "Ice", both in excellent versions that capture the original spirit while providing for tasty live diversions. Other highlights are a splendid rendition of "Unevensong" and a languid but iconic "Drafted".

Disk 2 presents "Dust and Dreams" in its entirety. The band seems unsure whether to be faithful to the original or strike out adventurously, so, while it is professionally and ably performed, it does not really add new dimensions. In particular, the lack of female co-lead on "Rose of Sharon" and an overly miked "Mother Road" detract from the experience. The choice of encores might have pleased fans but one hardly needs more live versions of "Sasquatch" or "Lady Fantasy".

Thanks to the superb track selection and performance on disk 1, I am rounding up to 4 stars. Recommended for that reason, even though I still counsel the purchase of "Dust and Dreams" separately. Camel at 20 shows no signs of relinquishing their hold on anything.

kenethlevine | 4/5 |


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