Camel is an English progressive rock band formed in 1971 and are an important part of the Canterbury scene.They were originally known as The Brew, which consisted of guitarist Andrew Latimer, bassist Doug Ferguson, and drummer Andy Ward. They then hired keyboardist Peter Bardens and changed their name to Camel. They released four albums together as the original four. Andy Ward was pushing the band towards a more jazzier direction, which caused Ferguson to leave and be replaced by Richard Sinclair, an ex-Caravan member; Mel Collins of King Crimson also joined. After their sixth album Breathless Peter Bardens left the band. After the release of two more albums, original drummer Andy Ward left the band, leaving only Latimer. Camel eventually fell into the same hole that many progressive rock bands found themselves in, by struggling to retain their roots while trying to appeal to the pop and mainstream audiences. In 1981, Camel disappeared from the scene until about a decade later when Latimer formed his own record producing company Camel Productions. They eventually returned to their prog-rock roots in Rajaz. In 2002, Peter Bardens died of lung cancer and their latest album, A Nod and a Wink is dedicated to him.They are often considered one of the most underrated bands in the progressive rock genre. More people started to check them out when Mikael Åkerfeldt of Opeth cited them as a major influence.
- Camel (1973)
- Mirage (1974)
- Music Inspired by the Snow Goose (1975)
- Moonmadness (1976)
- Rain Dances (1977)
- Breathless (1978)
- I Can See Your House From Here (1979)
- Nude (1981)
- The Single Factor (1982)
- Stationary Traveller (1984)
- Dust and Dream (1991)
- Harbour of Tears (1996)
- Rajaz (1999)
- A Nod and a Wink (2002)
- Andrew Latimer - guitar, vocals, flute, recorder (1971-present)
- Colin Bass - bass (1979-1981, 1984-present)
- Denis Clement - drums (2000-present)
- Jason Hart - keyboards (2013-present)
- Andy Ward - drums (1971-1981)
- Peter Bardens - keyboards (1971-1978; died 2002)
- Doug Ferguson - bass (1971-1977)
- Mel Collins - saxophones, flute (1977-1979)
- Richard Sinclair - bass (1977-1979)
- Jan Schelhaas - keyboards (1978-1981)
- Dave Sinclair - keyboards (1978-1979)
- Kit Watkins - keyboards, flute (1979-1981)
- Chris Rainbow - vocals, keyboards (1982-1991; died 2015)
- David Paton - bass (1982-1984)
- Ton Scherpenzeel - keyboards (1984, 1991, 1999)
- Paul Burgess - drums (1984-1992)
- Mickey Simmonds - keyboards (1991-1992)
- Dave Stewart - drums (1997-2000)
- Guy LeBlanc - keyboards (2000-2015; died 2015)
Camel contains examples of:
- Concept Album: Quite a few
- Music Inspired by the Snow Goose, a completely instrumental album about the book The Snow Goose
- Nude, the story of Hiroo Onoda, a popular story in Japanese culture
- Stationary Traveller, an album about German refugees attempts to cross the Berlin Wall
- Dust and Dreams, which is based off the book The Grapes of Wrath
- Harbour of Tears, a story of Irish immigrants and their trip to America
- Contemptible Cover: Debatable, but many disliked the cover art of I Can See Your House From Here which depicts a crucified astronaut in space looking down to the earth
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: The cover for the album Mirage looks very similar to Camel cigarette cartons.
- Also, the cover to I Can See Your House From Here, which depicts a crucified astronaut
- Epic Rocking: This is expected because they are prog-rock, but their most well known is the thirteen minute epic, "Lady Fantasy". "Nimrodel", "Lunar Sea" and "Ice" are not very far behind, at over nine minutes, and The Snow Goose could be considered an example as well, since most of the songs actually segue together seamlessly.
- Greatest Hits Album: A whole bunch of them over the years, through most are of out-of-print. The more recent ones have had the band try to avoid too much overlap between them by including lesser-known songs and live versions
- I Am the Band: Andrew Latimer, also Face of the Band
- Don't forget Colin Bass, who's been the band's bassist and vocalist since 1979 and a part of the creative force of the band.
- Meaningful Name: The Single Factor refers to Andrew Latimer being the only remaining band member at the time.
- Tick Tock Tune: "Metrognome", which, after the metronome section, then segues into a complex meter.
- Uncommon Time: It's prog. Were you really expecting something else?