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The Soft Machine

Canterbury Scene

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The Soft Machine Out Bloody Rageous (Anthology 67-73) album cover
4.01 | 9 ratings | 4 reviews | 22% 5 stars

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Boxset/Compilation, released in 2005

Songs / Tracks Listing

Disc One (75:09)
1. Feelin' Reelin' Squelin' (2:50)
2. Love Makes Sweet Music (2:27)
3. Hope Of Happiness (4:21)
4. Joy Of A Toy (2:50)
5. Hope For Happieness (Reprise) (1:38)
6. We Did It Again (3:46)
7. Why Are We Sleeping? (5:33)
8. Pataphysical Introduction - Part One (1:00)
9. A Concise British Alphabet - Part One (0:09)
10. Hibou Anemone And Bear (6:00)
11. A Concise British Alphabet - Part Two (0:12)
12. Hullo Der (0:54)
13. As Long As He Lies Perfectly Still (2:35)
14. Dedicated To You But You Weren't Listening (2:32)
15. Out-Bloody-Rageous (19:13)
16. Moon In June (19:09)

Disc Two (74:29)
1. Teeth (9:12)
2. Virtually Part 4 (3:20)
3. Kings And Queens (5:02)
4. All White (6:07)
5. Pigling Bland (4:24)
6. Drop (7:42)
7. Gesolreut (6:17)
8. The Soft Weed Factor (11:13)
9. Chloe And The Pirates (9:28)
10. Penny Hitch (6:40)
11. Down The Road (5:04)

Total Time: 149:38

Line-up / Musicians

- Kevin Ayers / bass, guitar, voice
- Robert Wyatt / drums, voice
- Mike Ratledge / keyboards
- Hugh Hopper / bass
- Brian Hopper saxophone, flute
- Elton Dean / saxophone
- Marc Charig / trumpet
- Lyn Dobson / saxophone, flute
- Nick Evans / trombone
- Mike Ratledge / keyboards
- Karl Jenkins / oboe, saxophone, recorder, keyboards
- John Marshall / drums
- Roy Babbington / bass
- Allan Holdsworth / guitars
- Phil Howard / drums

Releases information

2xCD SONY (5200392)

Thanks to frenchie for the addition
and to snobb for the last updates
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THE SOFT MACHINE Out Bloody Rageous (Anthology 67-73) ratings distribution

(9 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(22%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(67%)
Good, but non-essential (11%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

THE SOFT MACHINE Out Bloody Rageous (Anthology 67-73) reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Dick Heath
4 stars Just received my copy of Out-Bloody-Rageous from Amazon.UK, an official double CD compilation of Soft Machine music from the albums 'Soft Machine' to 'Seven', i.e. the ABC/Probe Records to the CBS/Columbia Records period. One can only hope Harvest will issue a complimentary third album to give a fuller coverage of the band's career.

As a freak for nearly all and particularly their first 3 or 4 albums, I'm delighted at the choice of tracks taken here. Following the path taken by the now rare 'Triple Echo' 3 LP set (issued by Harvest Records approx 25 years ago), CD 1 starts with a couple of their early single records, and then quickly gets to my favourites from their first self-titled album and Volume 2. And great news, these have been 24 bit remastered (as I begged in print for quite some time). 'Hope For Happiness/Joy Of A Toy' is no longer a muddy mix; at last clarity and instrument separation - I can only hope that the whole of both albums will be available in a remastered form please! A couple of tracks from 'Third' finishes CD 1. CD 2 shows Machine in jazz rock jazz fusion mode and with a number of tracks each taken taken from 'Fourth' through to 'Seven'.

But there are no surprises, no tracks dragged from some forgotten archive - I think we can trust Cuneiform and Blueprint have done that - although I believe Moon June are about to issue another mid 70's radio recording?

A great compilation, and in some way better than the 2 double CDs 'BBC 1967-1971' & 'BBC 1971-1974' (Hux Records). For somebody waiting to discover what Machine was about and how they changed over a 7 year period, this is a perfect recoding. The liner notes are excellent (but better still, buy and read the book of with same name by Graham Bennett when it is published in September 2005). 'Out-Bloody-Rageous' well illustrates the evolution of a major band, from the soul-based psychedelia to the avant, free jazz rock, that musical went much further than fellow psychedelians Pink Floyd did, even in the depths of Water's and Co.'s best psychedelic dream.

5 star for Machine freaks, 4 stars for the open-minded prog or jazz fan.

Review by lor68
4 stars Probably such a good anthology represents the Planet Soft Machine in the best manner, not only for the typical sound of Canterbury, with hints of progressive jazz and pshichedelia... the musicianship is often superb, even though sometimes it's uneven within some harmonic passages!! Never mind, cause their fluid 'Canterbury Style' along with the versatility of this music-genre are enriched with such an eccentric music vision by Robert Wyatt. But I think also of Mike Ratledge's astonishing , even though too much often unconventional keyboards, anyway well 'supported' by means of the avant-garde jazz style, merging later on with the integrated fusion passages.. During their fertile career the harmonic plots and their elaborate musicianship grew uncontrollably, by forgetting sometimes the most genuine music aspects, but this is the typical feature of this genre: you love it or you hate it, in accordance to your personal music tastes and your own impression received by the ensemble of Soft Machine ...besides I don't forgert the Elton Dean's sax and his most balanced music approach, which infected their penchant for the end this is an important anthology for all seasons!!
Review by Neu!mann
4 stars Shame on me, a veteran Proghead since the middle 1970s, for never making any effort until now to learn more about the legendary SOFT MACHINE. They were, after all, only the founding fathers of the so-called Canterbury scene, and practically invented the style of mannered English Jazz Rock that would blossom during the '70s, as ex-members joined and formed other bands. Look at a list of the extended line up of the group: it reads like a roll call to the Greater British Music Hall of Fame.

But good things often come to those who wait, and I couldn't have asked for a better introduction to the band than this two-disc 2005 anthology. 'Comprehensive' doesn't begin to describe it: each CD is packed to capacity with a total of thirty songs from the band's first seven, numerically titled albums, including both sides of their debut 45 rpm single. The collection spans the prolific years between 1967 and 1973, when the group (in all its evanescent incarnations) produced a vast amount of quality music, ranging in scope from the breathless nine-seconds of "A Concise British Alphabet" (the ideal primer for pre-school hippies) to the epic 19+ minutes of this compilation's title track, taken from the double- vinyl "Third" album.

Better yet, the selections are arranged in chronological order, enabling listeners to hear the band develop from art school pranksters to jazz-rock pioneers to something like a blend of both, exploring on later albums a unique sort of psychedelic fusion perhaps defining what we now recognize as the classic Canterbury sound.

Following the evolution of the Soft Machine style over the two-and-a-half hours of this compilation is like riding a time capsule through the Golden Age of English Progressive Rock. Their first two studio albums, from when the band shared the psychedelic limelight with Syd Barrett and The Pink Floyd, are the most playful of the bunch. The songs of this period (1968-1969) actually compare favorably to the deadpan Dada absurdity of Krautrockers like Faust and Amon Düül II: listen to the garage band mantra "We Did It Again", from the Soft's debut album, for proof. But Soft Machine arrived at the same destination long before the Germans, cracking a wry smile on their stiff English upper lips along the way.

"Third" (1970) showed a remarkable leap forward in ambition and sophistication, presenting four side-long musical montages laced with a strong vein of jazz improvisation (two of the near-20-minute long tracks are included here: one entire LPs worth of music). The cheerful brevity of their earlier songs is missing, as were the songs themselves: from this point on, Soft Machine would be a strictly instrumental outfit. But some of the lengthier experimental passages reveal music of stunning breadth and vision, even when constrained by the primitive production aesthetics of the time.

The second disc of this set showcases what might be called the mature Soft Machine style, as it developed on albums IV through VII between 1971 and 1973. By this time the predominant jazz flavor had metabolized into an altogether spacier electronic vibe, culminating in the long hypnotic jams of "Soft Weed Factor" and "Penny Hitch", the former built around a trio of overlapping electric piano ostinatos played in what sound like conflicting time signatures.

Add it all up and the sum is one of the most intelligent and influential bands of their era, with a remarkably consistent level of excellence despite a turbulent history of personnel changes (all detailed in the lengthy CD booklet). Veteran Soft Machine fans won't find any new music here (hence the tight fisted four-star rating), but for belated newcomers like myself it's an essential package of hitherto unknown music from a group still worth discovering three decades later.

Latest members reviews

4 stars I'm not a great one for buying compilations except by bands who I like a bit and just want a representation of their music. This goes beyond a representation of Soft Machine; this is the Essential SM! (though I wish they had included Facelift off Third) The inclusion of the brilliant Feelin' Reel ... (read more)

Report this review (#79076) | Posted by AndyStenhouse | Tuesday, May 23, 2006 | Review Permanlink

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