Previously unreleased 1969 studio recordings by Soft Machine's trio lineup (Hugh Hopper, Mike Ratledge, Robert Wyatt) featuring Brian Hopper on saxophone. Originally commissioned for a London multimedia event and never released!
Recorded in 1969.
Personnel: Brian Hopper (saxophone); Mike Ratledge (electric piano, organ, drums); Robert Wyatt (drums).
Liner Note Authors: Hugh Hopper; Bob Woolford; Brian Hopper.
Recording information: 1969.
Director: Steve Feigenbaum.
Editor: Steve Feigenbaum.
Photographers: Mark Ellidge; Bob Woolford.
1996's SPACED sees the release of long-forgotten tapes that Soft Machine had made in 1969 to accompany a staged "happening" in London. The seven pieces are improvisations of varying length, centered on the electric piano and organ of Mike Ratledge, the electric bass of Hugh Hopper, and the drumming of Robert Wyatt. The recordings also feature appearances by saxophonist Brian Hopper.
Ratledge and Hugh Hopper pioneered innovations that added depth and breadth to the sounds of their instruments. Their truly unique sonic signatures are wonderfully in evidence here. This set catches the band with its core ensemble still more-or-less intact, prior to the addition of new musicians. At the time of this recording, the short, song-form experiments of the first two SOFT MACHINE albums (S/T and VOLUME TWO) were behind the band, and the expansive landscapes of THIRD were just around the corner.