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Camel - Stationary Traveller CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.43 | 700 ratings

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Prog Metal Team
4 stars Finally! 8 years and 6 albums after Moonmadness, Latimer strips Camel of its symphonic ambitions and brings us a set smashing songs, rich in melody, sound and mood. Prog? Definitely not. Great song writing? Absolutely. If you thought Lies to be the best track from Nude then you should adore this album.

The opening Waltz is a short waltz that sets the mood for Camel's most gloomy album in their entire career. Refugee is an excellent sample of the concise song writing with focus on lyrical content that Camel has opted for here. Next on is the high point, Vopos finds Camel doing a dark and almost new wave interpretation of their sound. My favorite Camel moment next to The White Rider and Air Born.

Cloak & Dagger Man is the main reason why this album hasn't got 5 stars from me. In the days of vinyl albums, this AOR moment spoiled the album for me. Luckily we have 'next' buttons and remote controls now!

The title track is a shortened take on a song like Ice, a lyrical guitar solo that Latimer and Gilmour had a patent right on back in the days. With West Berlin and Fingertips Latimer adds two more examples of poignant song writing to his canon. These songs have been with me ever since I heard the Pressure Points live album when I was 13 and I still love them as much as back then. In fact they serve as landmark songs setting the boundary for seemingly simple but effective song writing.

Missing and After Words are ok but rather forgettable instrumentals. Long Goodbyes is not as bad as Cloak & Dagger Man but it comes close with its sentimental chorus. Sometimes I like it though, depends a bit of my mood. Whatever way I feel about it, the reissue will rinse any sour taste left by it by closing the album with an extended version of the astounding instrumental Pressure Points, just the way Latimer had wanted the album to end originally.

Unfortunately, this album wasn't the start of something beautiful but turned out to be Camel's last album to capture my interest for ages. There's no guarantee you will love it if you liked Camel's vintage years but if you're not an 80's-basher you might give it a try.

Bonnek | 4/5 |


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