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Camera: Remember When I Was Carbon Dioxide

Compelling second album from the Berlin combo.

Their press release plays it down, but Camera follow in the tradition of the best German bands of the late 60s/early 70s.

Keyboardist Timm Brockmann and drummer Michael Drummer (yes, really) also lay claim to a more authentic heritage than most krautrock disciples, by way of their Berlin hometown and prior form supporting Michael Rother and Dieter Moebius. They’re no mere stylists, though. The gliding grooves of From The Outside and Synchron may feel like sleek appropriations of Neu! or Harmonia, yet there’s a wonderfully loose quality about Camera’s approach to what they do. Factor in a tendency for free-forming improv and they’re probably nearer to the directives of Can or Faust than anything else. Songs like Haeata and Trophaee gurgle with avant-rhythms, disembodied voices and what sounds like some kind of electric owl. There are more faint and indecipherable words on Hallraum, as if their chosen line of communication is pure code. And just when it all starts to get very strange, along comes To The Inside, an 80s-styled synth beast that broods like the missing link between Throbbing Gristle and Gary Numan. A nourishingly good album.

Rob Hughes
Rob Hughes

Freelance writer for Classic Rock since 2008, and sister title Prog since its inception in 2009. Regular contributor to Uncut magazine for over 20 years. Other clients include Word magazine, Record Collector, The Guardian, Sunday Times, The Telegraph and When Saturday Comes. Alongside Marc Riley, co-presenter of long-running A-Z Of David Bowie podcast. Also appears twice a week on Riley’s BBC6 radio show, rifling through old copies of the NME and Melody Maker in the Parallel Universe slot. Designed Aston Villa’s kit during a previous life as a sportswear designer. Geezer Butler told him he loved the all-black away strip.