Wednesday 28 November 2018

Soft Machine - Hidden Details (2018)

The 12th album from this English band.

The band is a quartet with John Etheridge on guitars, John Marshall on drums, percussion, Roy Babbington on bass and Theo Travis on Fender piano, flutes and saxophones.

The first three is veterans from the old Soft Machine while Theo Travis is one of the leading lights in today's music scene.

This is their first album since 1981 and the less than good Land Of Cockayne.

Yes, I know that the band has used the monicker Soft Machine Legacy for many years. I never felt that that band was anything but a tribute band to Soft Machine made up by ex Soft Machine members. Some of them passed away during those years too. But were they the real thing, Soft Machine ? No. I like Soft Machine Legacy a lot on their own merits and that is all.

It seems like I am not the only one with those thoughts. So the band dropped the tribute part and went for the essence of Soft Machine. Which is more jazz between prog and avant-garde.

This album has a different feel and sound than the Soft Machine Legacy albums. Hidden Details sounds like the real deal, a Soft Machine album.

And it is !!

There is some re-arranged old and some new stuff here. The music is like a mix of Softs and 7.
You get both the woodwinds and the guitars version of Soft Machine here.

We also get some avant-garde as this album has an avant-garde edge throughout. And that is a good move.

This is a Soft Machine album I really like and indeed rate highly. This album deserve the Soft Machine name and reputation. It is indeed a big welcome back to their former greats and a very good album in it's own right. Get this album !

3.5 points

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