Soft Machine

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About Soft Machine

A pioneering British psychedelic group during the late '60s, Soft Machine ultimately developed a unique, forward-thinking brand of jazz-rock, tinged with progressive and experimental touches. As the leading light of the Canterbury scene, the combo were hugely influential to the burgeoning jazz fusion and experimental rock scenes. Originally based around surreal, heady, rhythmic, harmonic, and melodic deconstructions of conventional pop song structures, Soft Machine's music gradually morphed into a much looser, more improvisational style on their breakthrough 1970 album Third, which found favor with fans of American acts such as Weather Report and Return to Forever. After disbanding in the late '80s, various members performed as Softs, Soft Machine Legacy, and ultimately a reunited Soft Machine; they released Live at the Baked Potato in 2020. The group was a launchpad for several members' solo careers, including Robert Wyatt, Kevin Ayers, Elton Dean, Allan Holdsworth, Mike Ratledge, and Hugh Hopper.

Canterbury, England
September 1966

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