The Floating World : The "Official" Soft Machine Thread

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Scope J, Mar 11, 2010.


    PHILLYQ Forum Resident

    Brooklyn NY
    What do you think of the music?
  2. Glaeken

    Glaeken Forum Resident

    I prefer Bundles to Softs. "Floating World" is one of my favorites from that period.
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  3. Andreas

    Andreas Senior Member

    Frankfurt, Germany
    Even if your interest is focused on the Robert Wyatt era 1967 - 1971, there is a lot more to check out than the first four albums:
    "Jet Propelled Photographs" from 1967 with Daevid Allen and (more importantly) early versions of some of their later recordings
    "Robert Wyatt 1968" which contains the original solo recordings versions of what was to become Volume 2 and Moon In June
    "Live At The Paradiso" from 1969 which is a live recording of basically Volume 2 with excellent musical and sonic quality
    The John Peel BBC sessions from 1969 - 1971 with the definitive recordings of Moon In June, Esther's Nose Job and Mousetrap/Noisette/Backwards
    The live collections "Backwards" from 1969/1970, "noisette" from 1970, "Grides" from 1970/1971 and"Virtually" from 1971, all released on Cuneiform Records
  4. Crimson jon

    Crimson jon Forum Resident

    My two favorites are seven and bundles. The earlier stuff is good also but seven and bundles really struck a chord so to speak.
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  5. privit1

    privit1 Forum Resident

    Have most albums even if the band at the end was completely different from the band at the beginning. Every album has a unique musical quality, and I like some if not all of every album.
    chrisblower likes this.
  6. no.nine

    no.nine (not his real name)

    Even though King Crimson's In the Court... is the one which usually takes the "first prog album" honors, I've long felt that the first two Soft Machine releases were prog albums which pre-dated it. Lots will disagree no doubt, but I hope this thread won't derail into a "What is Prog" debate as a result. I only posted my opinion because, after all, it's a Soft Machine thread.
  7. vinylontubes

    vinylontubes Forum Resident

    Katy, TX
    I only have Third. In the 80s I bought a copy of it. It's a great album. I have never seen another of their albums, but would have picked them up if I ever saw one.
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  8. lschwart

    lschwart Senior Member

    Richmond, VA
    Big fan of the Wyatt years, especially Third which is one of my favorite records, period. All of Wyatt's work following those years is also very important music for me.

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  9. Chrome_Head

    Chrome_Head Forum Resident

    Los Angeles, CA.
    Been a fan well over a decade now after a co-worker clued me in to them (previously, I had only loosely known them as the band that backed up Syd Barrett on a few songs on his first solo record, The Madcap Laughs).

    SM 1 - Interesting debut, when Ayers was still in the band and doing a fair amount of singing. I like it, but I feel like the band's style is still very loose here.
    SM 2 - I think this is a magnificent album. I had a CD with albums 1 & 2 pressed together on one long disc, but I have since bought the Sundazed reissue of 2 by itself on LP. The band dazzles here, and Wyatt's vocals are unique and interesting. "Dada Was Here" is an outstanding cut.
    SM 3 - The first album of theirs that I heard. 4 long songs across 4 long sides. I can hear the influence of electric Miles Davis and Terry Riley all over this music. "Slightly All The Time" is my favorite on here, and I spin it often.
    SM 4 - This is where they start to lose the plot a bit, into much more skronky jazz. While Wyatt is still on drums, his role seems minimized here as he does no singing.
    SM 5 - I believe I had a CD also with 4 & 5 on disc. I honestly can't remember a whole lot about 5.
    SM 6 - Picked this up on LP as well, one live disc and one studio disc. Karl Jenkins, the keyboardist, I believe came aboard with this release. Both LP's are pretty solid.
    SM 7 - Have this LP as well. Much more fuzzy, fusion-y workouts, along with some very dreamy, quieter numbers ("Carol Ann").

    After this, I've only heard a few stray tracks from subsequent albums, such as Bundles and Alive And Well. I really dig most of their releases, although like Gong, I feel they kind of changed into a more run of the mill fusion band as time went on.

    Check out Seven if you haven't already. Some really good stuff on there. Six has some rather fusion-y moments on it as well.
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2018
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  10. Glaeken

    Glaeken Forum Resident

    A different kind and less-popular kind of prog at that point, sure....but no I wouldn't disagree with your premise.
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  11. Glaeken

    Glaeken Forum Resident

    THIS. Behind 3, 7 is my second-favorite Soft Machine album. It's essentially meant as a long-play and flows perfectly. Oddly it seems to be rather underrated in their catalog.
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  12. Scott Sheagren

    Scott Sheagren I’m a Metal,Rock,Jazz Fusion,Gaga type of guy.

    Oh I love them!
    I think 6,7 Bundles and Softs are my favorite.and the sound on them are amazing
  13. Scott Sheagren

    Scott Sheagren I’m a Metal,Rock,Jazz Fusion,Gaga type of guy.

    I love 7!
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  14. The only Softs album I have is the 2CD chronological comp Out-Bloody-Rageous, and it's funny to hear them gradually shift from psych-pop to smooth jazz nearing David Sanborn territory.
  15. penguinzzz

    penguinzzz Forum Resident

    Charlton, London
    I’d be interested to know which David Sanborn LPs you’ve been listening to.
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  16. elaterium

    elaterium Forum Resident

    III is my favorite, despite the poor SQ.
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  17. SurrealCereal

    SurrealCereal Forum Resident

    I have 3-7 on CD. I don’t listen to them often, but I intend to do so more.
    Scott Sheagren likes this.
  18. Scope J

    Scope J Senior Member Thread Starter

    Spring bump
  19. Mook

    Mook Forum Resident

    Count me in, love both of those albums, especially Bundles.

    I've never really got into their earlier stuff although I do have a copy of 6 & like it in places.
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  20. Glaeken

    Glaeken Forum Resident

    He's probably referring to cuts from Land of Cockayne, which is definitely their least dissonant and smoothest jazz album.
  21. rene smalldridge

    rene smalldridge Senior Member

    I love the first , second and third Soft Machine Albums. I very much like Four. I like Five. After that ,well , I have heard them all and 'tis not my cup o' tea.
    I have the first four on vinyl plus the 3 album comp "Triple Echo" on vinyl.
    I also have much later releases on CD of material before their first album and various live material throughout the era that I am partial to.
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  22. gary191265

    gary191265 Forum Resident

    Kevin Ayers lived out the last years of his life as my uncle's neighbour in Carcassonne.
  23. Mugrug12

    Mugrug12 nothing gold can stay

    Check out "rock bottom", psychedelic masterpiece. I think it's tits.

    kendo likes this.
  24. Chrome_Head

    Chrome_Head Forum Resident

    Los Angeles, CA.
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  25. Evan Guest

    Evan Guest Forum Resident

    Spokane, WA
    3rd through Land of Cockayne. Ten great albums!

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