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Camel - Dust And Dreams CD (album) cover

DUST AND DREAMS

Camel

 

Symphonic Prog

3.64 | 609 ratings

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Sidscrat
3 stars This album started a new era for Camel and more specifically, Andy Latimer. He was the only member of the classic lineup remaining. The Camel sound was no longer what it was. As I have pointed out before when you remove half the signature sound a band is known for fit really is no longer the same band. Peter Bardens had his own style and methodology he brought to his playing and writing and he and Andy Latimer worked well together for a long time until Latimer wanted to try to push the band to be more commercial seeking out the hit single the record company desired. Peter Barden said that Andy felt that Bardens was "holding him back" and they started having issues with the writing of the album Breathless which resulted in a bit of a shock since so much of it is poppy. But the sound is still Camel as Peter's keys were still very audibly visible.

Every album after Breathless has sounded less and less like Camel so it is hard to review these albums (for me) when it is too easy to grade them based on a sound that cannot be duplicated easily. The back-and-forth interplay between guitars and keys is not at all there and that was one of the biggest joys of Camel's music.

Dust and Dreams was the first album with a reformed Camel who relocated to the US into California. It is their first and only double album to date. Andy started his own company Camel Productions with his wife Susan Hoover who ended up contributing a great deal to his songwriting and thus the sound. But there are parts of this double album that have some of the classic Camel sound to it. I appreciate that in some ways Andy tried to keep that classic sound but also pushed for a more modern sound. The keyboard sounds are so much different and are up to date for the time on tracks such as Milk and Honey which is a dark song, Storm Clouds has some good combination or keys and guitar, Cotton Camp is a good song with great guitar licks. Broken Banks sounds like classic Camel and is a nice reminder of old. Hopeless Anger is one of the best tracks in strength of guitar work.

This concept album is filled with good music and I think it really is the last of the best work of the band. Interestingly, every studio album after The Single Factor is a concept one. The albums after this all seem to try and go somewhere but never really get there.

Sidscrat | 3/5 |

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