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Camel Total Pressure - Live In Concert 1984 album cover
4.03 | 53 ratings | 6 reviews | 57% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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DVD/Video, released in 2007

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Pressure Points (7:17)
2. Drafted (3:50)
3. Captured (3:02)
4. Lies (5:11)
5. Refugee (3:48)
6. Vopos (5:49)
7. Stationary Traveller (5:16)
8. West Berlin (5:18)
9. Fingertips (4:40)
10. Sasquatch (4:06)
11. Wait (4:21)
12. Cloak And Dagger Man (4:04)
13. Long Goodbyes (6:45)
14. Rhayader (2:29)
15. Rhayader Goes To Town (6:28)
16. Lady Fantasy (12:41)

Total time 85:05

Bonus material:
1. La Princesse Perdue
2. Unevensong
3. Never Let Go
4. Hymn to Her
5. A brief interview with Andrew Latimer for Mirror Image, originally aired in the UK in 1985.

Line-up / Musicians

- Chris "Rainbow" Harley / vocals, keyboards
- Andrew Latimer / lead guitar, vocals
- Ton Scherpenzeel / keyboards
- Colin Bass / bass, vocals
- Paul Burgess / drums, percussion

- Mel Collins / sax
- Ritchie Close / keyboards
- Peter Bardens / organ

Releases information

Recorded in 1984 at the Hammersmith Odeon, London, England, directed by Mike Mansfield.
Almost identical to "Pressure Points" - it doesn't include the incidental visuals but adds missing video tracks, once lost

DVD Camel Productions ‎- CP809DVD (2007, US)

Thanks to Keppa4v for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy CAMEL Total Pressure - Live In Concert 1984 Music

CAMEL Total Pressure - Live In Concert 1984 ratings distribution

(53 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(57%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(34%)
Good, but non-essential (8%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

CAMEL Total Pressure - Live In Concert 1984 reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by erik neuteboom
4 stars You can also name this DVD Pressure Points Plus because in fact it is an extended version (extra songs and an interview with Latimer from 1985) of the video Pressure Points, released in 1986 by Channel 5.

I was not very enthousiastic about that video featuring sloppy camera work at some moments like focussing on the second keyboard player while the first is playing a solo or focussing on the drummer while Latimer is doing great guitar work. But this DVD is another story due to the very interesting extra songs like strong renditions of Drafted, Captured and Lies (from the album Nude, the first time I witnessed a Camel concert) and the socalled 'Added Pressure' section that contains La Princesse Perdue, Unevensong, Never Let Go (I enjoyed the flashy synthesizer solo by fellow countryman Ton Scherpenzeel, ex-Kayak) and Hymn To Her that delivers the both very distinctive as sensitive Andy Latimer style guitarwork, including the 'clowning' because of his intense emotions while playing! Lies is one of my favorite Camel songs becase of the melancholic vocals and warm guitar runs, on this DVD you can enjoy a delicate version featuring a fluent synthesizer solo by Ton Scherpenzeel and another sensitive guitar solo by Andy Latimer. Remarkable is the spacey kebyoard intro by Scherpenzeel on the track Vopos, a bit polished track. During Stationary Traveller (fine play of words) we can witness Latimer on the panflute, a very melancholical sounding instrument, and building up a splendid guitar solo. The absolute highlight is my ultimate Camel composition Lady Fantasy: lots of dynamics, an exciting Hammond organ solo and Latimer plays very compelling guitar work, again including that typical 'clowning'!

To me this DVD sounds superior to the video version, I was carried away by Camel on stage during this Hammersmith Odeon concert in London(1984) featuring guest musicians Mel Collins and Peter Bardens, what a wonderful symphonic prog!

Review by lor68
4 stars Well I 've already rated the audio cd version regarding the present live dated 1984, which has been "video remastered" in a remarkable manner... by means of this famous concert gig in London A. Latimer & C. let their melodic prog music play as an accessible stuff for a wider crowd, usually not involved with such a diverse light prog rock genre. However, before this one, I suggest to buy their recent representation live on stage in the USA concerning the "Harbour of Tears" Tour, that's "A Coming of Age": unfortunately this latter is available in the underground music shop only, being suitable for their "aficionados" (not for the fans of the commercial mainstream I mean...). The short frame concerning the concept album "The Snow goose" ("Rhayder" and "Rhayader goes to town") is tasteful, but naturally "La Princesse Perdue" is their true surprise, being one of the bonus tracks along with a few old songs such as "Never Let go" or "Uneven Song" for example, which you couldn't find within the audio cd version (entitled "Pressure Points" live). Moreover I wanna make a special mention for "Hymn To Her", a delightful execution at the guitar for Andy, in the vein of his instrumental best tunes like for instance "Ice" or the recent "The Hour candle", as usual "must-have" tracks during his famous live performances. Instead talking about their commercial tunes, as I don't like the "Stationary Traveller" album, I can't listen to the title track nor to "West Berlin", a couple of pop songs which I don't like very much...nevermind, the present DVD witnesses the best period for Camel (talking about the feedback by European and American people, almost making every album of the eighties a best-seller).

Nowadays the future of the band is obscured by dark clouds, but I like to wish them a long live tour in the next years - and this is my hope at least!!

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
3 stars A not so totally successful live DVD

Total Pressure is a re-release of a previously released live video (called Pressure Points) originally filmed and recorded on the tour in support of the Stationary Traveller album in the mid 80's. There is also a live album from the same show. The set list consists of almost the full Stationary Traveller album, though not in the same running order as the studio album and with some songs from other albums played in between the Stationary Traveller tracks. Stationary Traveller was a fine album, but hardly one of Camel's very best albums. In my review of that album I said that Camel's best albums are their first four and their most recent four, and that what they did in between was of varying quality. Stationary Traveller is, however, probably the best album they did in those in-between-years. The other albums represented in the main part of this show are Nude, The Single Factor and I Can See Your House From Here all from those uneven in-between-years. This means that the performance under review here is almost entirely focused on material from 1979 to 1984, hardly Camel's better years! There is, however, an encore consisting of two tracks from The Snow Goose and the show closes with the classic Lady Fantasy from Mirage.

As I also said in my review of the Stationary Traveller studio album, the best songs from that album are the instrumentals. This is also true of this live recording. The show opens with an instrumental from Stationary Traveller, called Pressure Points. This track features the amazing guitar sound of Andy Latimer. Stunning guitar work! They then move on to play three songs from the Nude album, with the instrumental Captured being by far the best. We then get five songs from Stationary Traveller in a row and this is easily the weakest part of the show for me. The instrumental title track being the best of these five songs and here Andy Latimer plays a pan flute to great effect and further stunning guitar solos. I do, however, prefer the studio version of this particular song as it has lovely acoustic guitars missing on this version.

Sasquatch is taken from The Single Factor and is another instrumental that has become a mainstay of the band's shows. Wait is taken from I Can See Your House From Here and is the oldest song played until the encore. It is a basic Pop song and as such is not one of my favourites. Two further songs from Stationary Traveller follows before the encore.

With the exception of Pressure Points which is considerably extended and improved here, the tracks from Stationary Traveller are quite faithful to the studio album. But I generally prefer the studio versions of these songs over these live versions. The performances of the Stationary Traveller tracks are rather lifeless, actually. The tracks from Nude, The Single Factor and The Snow Goose, on the other hand, are actually better than their original versions in my opinion. These songs have a bit more punch compared to their original studio versions (that this reviewer finds a bit subdued). And when the band plays these songs, they seem to live up and the performance adopts a whole new dimension and energy!

The band consists of six people plus two guests. As many as four different keyboard players take part in this show (including Peter Bardens who makes a guest appearance on some tracks)! Ton Scherpenzeel of Kayak does a good job together with Ritchie Close and vocalist Chris Rainbow who also play keyboards. However, the stage presence of these keyboard players is close to zero! The performance of Close and Scherpenzeel feels like "a regular day at the office" for them, basically.

From a visual standpoint this version of the band is rather dull. Andy Latimer himself is the most charismatic person here and even if I love the man very much, I must say that he is not really a show man. Though it is fun to watch him play - his "clown faces" and all. This version of Camel is just not a very visual band, but were they ever? Don't get me wrong here though; I personally like bands that concentrate on playing their instruments instead of doing a lot of unnecessary theatrics. But they must put effort and emotion into the performance! Which they do, occasionally! I really feel that when they finish the last track of the night from the Stationary Traveller album (suitably called Long Goodbyes), the whole band feel relieved. And during the encore, when they play a section from The Snow Goose, the whole show gains a lot in energy and enthusiasm. This is the intensity they should have had all night!

One problem I have with this video is that the cameras are almost never where the action is. The camera men almost never manage to film the one who is playing the most interesting passage at the time (or the angles are simply badly chosen). This is confusing, to say the least! The whole thing is badly filmed; you never really get an overview of the stage. When Peter Bardens is introduced for the encore, for example, they don't even show him walking on stage! I don't think there is more than one single shot at Bardens' face! I have never seen such a badly edited concert film. The picture quality is also not the best, but it is, after all, the music that counts.

The DVD also features some bonus tracks (in slightly worse picture quality). Musically these are good, but visually they are dispensable. Here you get another number from The Snow Goose; Unevensong from Raindances, Hymn To Her from I Can See Your House From Here and the classic Never Let Go from Camel's self-titled debut album. You also get a short but interesting video interview with Andy Latimer filmed at the time.

To sum up. I am a bit disappointed with Total Pressure. But I definitely still enjoy it despite its considerable shortcomings (that lie primarily in the visual aspect and the heavy reliance on material from the Stationary Traveller album). The live album called Pressure Points which features this very same show, though not all of it, is actually preferable over this DVD as some of the weakest tracks from the show has been cut and the album actually flows much better! As the visual aspect is not very strong here anyway, I would actually recommend to go for the live album in this case (that I rated with four stars!).

Total Pressure is still a good DVD despite some obvious flaws, but it is certainly not the best Camel DVD out there (and it is, as I said, not even the best official release of this very same show despite the fact that it is more complete). The more recent live DVD, Coming Of Age, is simply extremely much better in every possible respect compared to the present DVD! Coming Of Age is also a much better video introduction to Camel as it features tracks from the mid 70's to the mid 90's (with a performance of the excellent Harbour Of Tears album in its entirety!).

Review by Guillermo
4 stars During CAMEL's 1984 Tour for the promotion of their "Stationary Traveller" album, it was decided to record a live album (which in late 1984 was released as "Pressure Points - Camel Live in Concert") and also to record a concert video for a TV appearance. So, one concert in London's Hammersmith Odeon was selected to do both things. This happened in 11- May-1984. The video was also later released under the "Pressure Points - Camel Live in Concert" title, but with both releases having some differences in the inclusion or exclusion of some songs and with both not including all the songs (I think so) which were played at the concert. In their official website, the information about this says that there were some problems with the use of lights during the video recording of the concert, so at that time some songs had to be ommited from the video version. The first video version was also released in VHS videocassette (and on DVD some years ago), with the addition of some "conceptual video" scenes for all the songs which were played from their "Stationary Traveller" album, an album which is a conceptual album about West Berlin and East Berlin during the Cold War period. All of the "conceptual video" scenes were not liked by some people (incluiding myself) because they were done like "telenovela" ("soap opera") scenes in a very cardboard way. That "telenovela" scenes really marred that video version of this concert, being very intrusive to the viewers who only wanted to see the band playing the songs in concert. I think that it was a very bad decision to include those "telenovela" scenes then. But fortunately, that was corrected with the new release of this concert video on DVD titled "Total Pressure", which doesn't include those "telenovela" scenes anymore, and which also includes all the songs (I think so) that were played at the concert, with a much better quality in images and sound. (The live album version was also expanded with some additional songs when it was re-issued on CD some years ago, but still under the "Pressure Points - Camel Live in Concert" title). Unfortunately, the bad direction of cameras couldn't be corrected, so one still has to watch to some members of the band while one or two of the other members of the band are playing very good solos, without the cameras being focused in the members who play the solos. This particularly happens very often when keyboard players Ton Scherpenzeel and Richie Close play very good keyboard solos, and the cameras are focused instead in the members who are at the front of the stage (Colin Bass, Andy Latimer, Paul Burgess and Chris Rainbow). It seems that the Video Director didn't have enough time to know the band's repertoire to really know at which time which member was going to play a solo to focus at least one of the cameras in that member. After all, it was done for a TV appearance and maybe was done without the band being very involved in the design of the making of the video. Maybe it could have been better to do at least one rehearsal with the video camera crew before the concert. But it seems that it wasn't done that way and that the video was recorded live with the Video Director simply giving orders to the camera crew as the concert was played and recorded and that there really wasn't very much post-recording editing done to the video, at least in the selection of the best camera angles.

Anyway, despite all these problems, this concert video is very good. At least, the quality of the images and sound was improved a lot thanks to the use of some technology, and the inclusion of additional songs was a very good idea. For example, songs like "Drafted", "Captured", "Lies", "La Princesse Perdue", "Unevensong", "Never Let Go" and "Hymn to Her" were included in this new version. And one can watch to all the songs they played from their "Stationary Traveller" album as they really were played in the concert. Fortunately, at least some very good keyboard solos played by Close and Scherpenzeel were caught by the cameras in songs like "Lies" (with Close playing a solo) and with Scherpenzeel and him sharing keyboard solos in other songs. There is also a guest appearance on Hammond Organ from original member Peter Bardens on "Rhayader", "Rhayader Goes to Town" and in "Lady Fantasy", with the cameras sometimes being focused on him playing a solo and in other times not being focused on him while he was playing a solo. In these three songs, there are four keyboard players playing together with the band! Mel Collins also appears playing some sax solos in "Rhayader Goes to Town" and in "Fingertips" (with Latimer being out of the stage in this last song). Latimer also plays some flute in "Rhayader" and pan flutes in the "Stationary Traveller" album title song. All the members of the band played very well, and they looked very happy playing together, very well rehearsed.

Maybe some people don't like CAMEL's music from the eighties. But I really like it a lot. This band like other Prog Rock bands from the seventies had to change a bit their musical styles in the eighties to satisfy their record labels's inclinations towards more commercial Pop Rock arrangements for their music. Unfortunately, CAMEL never has been a very popular Prog Rock band like others (YES, Genesis, etc.) from the seventies despite doing all those changes to their music in the more commercial terms of the eighties. Despite their music became more accessible then it still retained a lot of quality and a lot of Prog Rock's influences, and fortunately their looks weren't very much influenced by the "look fads" of the eighties. Fortunately, they still appeared on stage looking like very good musicians playing their music very well without looking like some very commercial Pop Rock bands from the eighties (Duran Duran, Spandau Ballet, Culture Club, etc.).

R.I.P. Peter Bardens , Richie Close and Chris Rainbow.

Latest members reviews

3 stars The 80's is not my favorite decade, for Camel, and for any other thing. Why would I want to see and hear a live show from Camel's lowest points in its discography? The reasons were very simple: first, the only live recordings I owned by this wonderful band were a downloaded from YouTube video ca ... (read more)

Report this review (#2434199) | Posted by judahbenkenobi | Saturday, August 1, 2020 | Review Permanlink

5 stars At long last! This concert was originally shown on British TV in the 80s with a terrible sequence of filmed clips shot at London's Canary Wharf long before the new offices were built. The video clips were supposedly of World War 2 or Cold War scenes with a woman separated from her lover. Reall ... (read more)

Report this review (#124362) | Posted by memark | Saturday, June 2, 2007 | Review Permanlink

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