Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
The Soft Machine - Third CD (album) cover


The Soft Machine


Canterbury Scene

4.19 | 1107 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars The end of the first trilogy of albums by Soft Machine. We came a bit of a long way. The first album showing the band's sound, Volume Two improving on said sound, and now we have the ever beloved Third. An album I heard from many as one of Soft Machine's best albums. I was pretty stoked to hear why. Now after listening to it I can definitely get the love around this record.

Unlike the last 2 records, Third ditches the formula from the last records and goes for 4 side long songs. 4 giants songs each with their own flair. The first song, Facelift is a live song. The first 5 or so minutes shows what this album's sound is. Less traditional jazz and rock combo and more of a experimental sound. The more the song goes on the more rhythmic it gets, but also the more crazy it gets. The ending is this weird sorta reversed but also not soundscape that feels like we are going back in time to the start of the song, however this is only the end. The next song is Slightly All The Time. This song continues the more experimental jazz of Facelift but gives some more streamlined tweaks and nudges to make it stand out and make it better. With that, each section of the song has it's own sorta flair. Really listening to it can be a very nice experience. Next song is Moon In June. To me it's like a step back and goes back Soft Machine's more rock roots, however the song gets progressively more crazy and sorta creepy. Like it went from a cute and fun song to this almost nightmarish jazz hell that Soft Machine put you in. It's kinda scary in some ways. The last song, Out-Bloody-Rageous is like the ultimate closing piece of this album. It does the things from the last songs (minus the vocals on Moon In June.) and perfects them. This to me is the perfect Soft Machine song. It is jazzy, it is hypnotic, it is psychedelic in a way, and it has some amazing horn work. However this album does have some problems. With how long the songs are, I often find myself taking a few breaks or losing my attention with the songs and prioritizing more on other activities than listening. Plus sometimes I feel like the songs are getting a tad old in some areas to where I want that section of the song to end as quick as possible. I know this is a more of a me thing but hey I think it is a fair critic to make for this album. But despite those problems I think the album is really really good. It respects the sound from the last two records but perfects it in these 4 Goliath songs.

I see now why Third is considered one of the best record by the band. It definitely deserves the praise it gets. Is it perfect? No, no album is. But I wouldn't mind seeing and picking up a copy of the album and give it a spin every once in a while. It's a great record, and I can see why people like this and the band so much now.

Dapper~Blueberries | 4/5 |


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Share this THE SOFT MACHINE review

Social review comments () BETA

Review related links

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.