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The Soft Machine - Third CD (album) cover

THIRD

The Soft Machine

 

Canterbury Scene

4.21 | 676 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Hard to believe this is the same band who released their first two albums full of Psychedelic and often poppy tunes. It still blows my mind when I think of what they created here. This is without a doubt one of the greatest recordings of all time. Interesting that they brought in some guests here, it's not something they had done in the past or would do in the future. Again it just seems like everything about this album is special. Very cool that Jimmy Hastings is one of the guests here playing flute and bass clarinet. This was originally released in 1970 as a double album with 4 side long suites.

The first song "Facelift" was composed by Hopper and recorded live. The fuzz is killer early as Ratledge rips it up. It's quite experimental until it picks up after 7 minutes. Check out the horns. A change 10 1/2 minutes in with repetitive sounds before the sax comes in. Love when the flute takes over a minute later with that dark atmosphere. Very Krautrock-like. It picks up after 13 minutes and the sax returns.This is trippy stuff. "Slightly All The Time" is a Ratledge tune and is in stark contrast to the first track. Instead of being intense it's a laid back and beautiful song with some gorgeous sax melodies. It starts out with Hopper's bass before those beautiful sax melodies come in with a full sound. The tempo picks up around 6 minutes then the flute replaces the sax. Just gorgeous. Clarinet after 8 1/2 minutes as the sax plays on. It settles after 12 minutes then picks back up after 16 minutes with sax and bass leading while Wyatt keeps busy.

"Moon In June" is a Wyatt track and he also sings on it. It all sounds so good early on then we get some fuzz before 9 1/2 minutes. Sax follows as the bass throbs. It's chaotic after 13 minutes with lots of fuzz too. The organ pulses then the guest violin makes some noise after 16 minutes. "Out- Bloody-Rageous" is a Ratledge tune that is very psychedelic and spacey for 5 minutes as layers of organ sounds flood in. The song then kicks in. Fuzz organ a minute later. Sax before 9 1/2 minutes then a spacey calm follows. Piano takes over 10 1/2 minutes in then the horns join in. They're jamming until a calm arrives before 16 minutes. Keyboards end it in a spacey manner.

This is one of those one-of-a-kind recordings that has stood the test of time. One of the greatest albums ever made.

Mellotron Storm | 5/5 |

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