To find out which is the best Camouflage album, I did the work and rated every single album track by track. I summarized the result in a ranking taht you can find here. At the end of the article, the values are again clearly arranged, shown chronologically in a curve graph.
Sadly, the masters of instrumental music
I really love and adore Camouflage since the 80s. But intrumental music is boring and soulless to me. That's why the band doesn't do quite so well here, at least as far as the star rating is concerned. There are fantastic songs on every album, but the instrumentals clearly pull the overall rating down. I guess if you put all the instrumentals on one album, you'd probably have an above average, great space opera. But it's exactly these instrumentals that I always skip on a regular Camouflage album.
The best Camouflage album charts
8. Spice Crackers
Release: 1995 Overall Rating: 3.07 ★★★☆☆ Great tracks: X‑Ray Weak tracks: Electronic Music, Zwischenspiel, Funky Service (What Do You Want To Drink?), Je Suis Le Dieu, Ronda's Trigger, Travelling Without Moving
I think the 'Spice Crackers' is not bad in principle, but unfortunately 'Camouflage' have clearly overdone it here with their endless instrumental tracks. Also the influence of the early 90s Ambient and Trance movement has not been taken up by most fans and also me as a positive element, in an actual Synth Pop album. If you like elevator music and endless seeming soundscapes, then you will surely find what you are looking for here.
Spice Crackers 4
Electronic Music 2
Bad News 4
Days Run Wild 4
A Place In China (Heaven's Not) 3,5
Funky Service (What Do You Want To Drink?) 2
Back To Heaven 3,5
Je Suis Le Dieu 2,5
Ronda's Trigger 2
Travelling Without Moving 2
Release: 1991 Overall Rating: 3.14 ★★★☆☆ Great tracks: Handsome Weak tracks: Mother, Dad, These Eyes, Spellbound, Who The Hell Is David Butler?
When the album 'Meanwhile' was released, it completely passed me by. I don't think there was much promotion done for the album at that time. I didn't have MTV at my parents home and I didn't see a music video of the album at the German music show 'Formel Eins'. Compared to the debut, the follow-up had a hard time. But honestly the album contains too many very weak and trivial songs. And I think many other fans of the first hour were disappointed by this follow-up.
Seize Your Day 3,5
Heaven (I Want You) 4
Where The Happy Live 3
These Eyes 2,5
What For 3
This Day 3
Bitter Sweet 3,5
Who The Hell Is David Butler? 2
6. Methods Of Silence
Release: 1989 Overall Rating: 3.3 ★★★☆☆ Great tracks: Love Is A Shield Weak tracks: Your Skinhead Is The Dream, Les Rues, Rue De Moorslede
After 'The Great Commandment', 'Love Is A Shield' is probably the second biggest hit of the band. It is on the album 'Methods Of Silence', packed with a fantastic cover. Besides 3 other good songs, the album is rather mediocre. Besides that there are all these instrumental fillers. Camouflage would have done well to put the b‑sides 'Kling Klang' and 'The Story Of The Falling Fighters' instead of the last two instrumentals on the album.
One Fine Day 4
Love Is A Shield 5
Your Skinhead Is The Dream 2
On Islands 3
Feeling Down 3,5
Sooner Than We Think 4
A Picture Of Life 4
Les Rues 2
Rue De Moorslede 2
Release: 2006 Overall Rating: 3.75 ★★★★☆ Great tracks: We Are Lovers, Motif Sky, Passing By, The Perfect Key, The Pleasure Remains, Something Wrong Weak tracks: Memory, Stream, Light
With the album 'Relocated' I had this feeling that Camouflage are finally back! With the Singles 'Motif Sky', 'Something Wrong' and 'The Pleasure Remains' Camouflage have chosen the right songs for the radio. But there are more Single worthy songs like 'We Are Lovers' or 'The Perfect Key' on the album. Especially worth mentioning is that this time there are no endless instrumental tracks. There are 3 titles, but they are also only very short. The album 'Relocated' is also part of the article '20 Synth Pop milestones and collection must-haves'.
We Are Lovers 5
Motif Sky 5
Real Thing 3,5
Passing By 4,5
The Perfect Key 5
The Pleasure Remains 5
Bitter Taste 3
Something Wrong 5
How Do You Feel? 3,5
4. Voices & Images
Release: 1988 Overall Rating: 3.83 ★★★★☆ Great tracks: That Smiling Face, Neighbours, The Great Commandment, They Catch Secrets Weak tracks: Music For Ballerinas, Pompeji
With the ranking of the debut, some die-hard fans probably want to stone me. I guess I'll take the risk. Because no matter how much you love the band, if you are honest, you know that the album is not flawless. For a debut album it is absolute awesomeness. And the Singles are timeless and amazing. From the heart I would like to give the album a full 5 star rating, but 'Music For Ballerinas' and 'Pompeii' annoy me too much for that. But from the track by track rating, we are already on a very high level here.
That Smiling Face 5
Helpless Helpless 4
The Great Commandment 5
Winner Takes Nothing 3,5
Strangers Thoughts 4
From Ay To Bee 4
Where Has The Childhood Gone 3,5
Music For Ballerinas 2
I Once Had A Dream 3,5
They Catch Secrets 4,5
Release: 2015 Overall Rating: 3.88 ★★★★☆ Great tracks: Shine, Count On Me, Misery, Leave Your Room Behind, End Of Words Weak tracks: Greyscale, Light Grey, Dark Grey
'Greyscale' was announced and postponed again and again. Almost 10 years after the 'Relocated' album we all have been longing for it. And we were not disappointed. On many concerts, long before the release, the band has already presented the Singles 'Misery' and 'Shine' live to their fans. And the album delivers one hit after another. Many fans and also I took the song 'Count on Me (Featuring Peter Heppner)' to the heart. At least that's what I could hear from many conversations. A cooperation like this should be on the agenda for the next album. Read the full review here. PS: Skip the "Grey" tracks.
In The Cloud 4
Count On Me 5
Leave Your Room Behind 5
Light Grey 2
If … 4
End Of Words 5
Dark Grey 2
I'll Find 4
Release: 2003 Overall Rating: 3.96 ★★★★☆ Great tracks: Me And You, Perfect, I Can't Feel You, I'll Follow Behind, Thief Weak tracks: Adrenalin, 74 Minutes
From the first single 'Thief' (1999) to the release of the album 'Sensor' (2003) it took four whole years again. The result is a fantastic Synth Pop album that is unparalleled. Sure, the two instrumentals lower the overall rating a bit, but the majority of the good ratings clearly outdoes it. Very nicely visualized on the album cover is that the band is on the road again in a threesome. I don't know if that's an unpopular opinion of mine, but you can also hear the trio and the enhancement in sonic terms. The songs are all more pleasing and much more catchy.
Me And You 5
Here She Comes 4
I Can't Feel You 5
I'll Follow Behind 4,5
74 Minutes 2
You Turn 4
1. Bodega Bohemia
Release: 1993 Overall Rating: 4.17 ★★★★☆ Great tracks: Pedestrian's Adventures, Suspicious Love Weak tracks: (None)
Surprise, surprise: The worst album artwork (maybe the funiest) is the best Camouflage album ever. Congrats to 'Bodega Bohemia'. In principle, the same mechanism as on the 'Violator' album by Depeche Mode is used here (Article: What is the best Depeche Mode album of all-time?). You remove all irrelevant tracks like intros, interludes, instrumentals and outros and concentrate only on the few strong songs. Here less is more and will be rewarded accordingly.
'Bodega Bohemia' is after 'Spice Crackers' the commercially most unsuccessful album of the band, but in my opinion the best. To visualize the greatness of this album, I took the liberty of creating this fan artwork with a wink.
Pedestrian's Adventures 4,5
Time Is Over 4
Suspicious Love 5
Bondage People 4
In Your Ivory Tower 4
All Camouflage albums in a chart overview
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