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The Soft Machine - Bundles CD (album) cover

BUNDLES

The Soft Machine

 

Canterbury Scene

3.99 | 224 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
5 stars I feel like one of the few out there who loved "Seven" the previous album. We get the same lineup on "Bundles" except for one major addition, the great Allan Holdsworth on guitar. "Bundles" isn't as structured as "Seven" in fact there's a lot of jamming going on which I like, especially when Holdsworth is involved. By the way everyone in this lineup except for Ratledge played with NUCLEUS. In fact the main theme for the opening track is taken from NUCLEUS' "Song For The Bearded Lady" which was a Jenkins composition.

"Hazard Profile Part 1" opens with church bells before the drums of Marshall come in then a full band sound before a minute. Love the repetitive guitar melodies from Holdsworth. It settles a little before 3 minutes as the guitar solos and bass throbs. Marshall is great here. This is the Allan Holdsworth show though. Organ is back 7 1/2 minutes in. "Part 2" opens with laid back piano melodies. Acoustic guitar helps out part way through. "Part 3" builds to a full sound with guitar out in front. This continues in "Part 4". "Part 5" is where the drums take the lead. I like the way the keyboards come and go. Incredible sound here. "Gone Sailing" is a minutes worth of acoustic guitar.

"Bundles" reminds me of CAMEL early, I think it's the guitar. A change a minute in where i'm reminded of MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA. The bass, guitar and drums are excellent here. It's like they're all ready to explode but they don't. Organ before 3 minutes. It blends into "Land Of The Big Snake". Check out the guitar and drumming on this one. The bass and piano really add to the sound as well. It settles 3 minutes in. "The Man Who Waved At Trains" features intricate drumming and keyboards. Very laid back. Sax and aboe join in. Such a pleasant and relaxing sound. It blends into "Peff" but picks up speed. Same sound though. It blends into "Four Gongs Two Drums" where the intensity is raised once again. A change late as we get a Marshall drum solo. "The Floating World" features guest Ray Warleigh on flutes. They picked the title well because this is floating music with a TANGERINE DREAM vibe even, except for the flute melodies.

I can't say enough about this album or this band.

Mellotron Storm | 5/5 |

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