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Soft Machine - Grides CD + DVD
Soft Machine were one of first and one of the greatest jazz/rock bands of all time. Their importance and influence was especially great in Europe, where they influenced several generations of bands, and their influences can still be heard to this day in bands like Jaga Jazzist and beyond. Grides presents the most famous version of the band (Elton Dean, Hugh Hopper, Mike Ratledge, Robert Wyatt) recorded live at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam on October 25, 1970, in a high-quality, previously unreleased recording, just a few months after the release of Third and at the peak of their popularity. It showcases them in transition between releases, with the band performing 3 of the four works from Third, as well as some of the earliest recordings of material from the upcomming Fourth, including some very different arrangements to what would eventually end up on that release. In addition, it features the earliest recording of Elton's Neo-Caliban Grides, which has a fairly lengthy composed section that was never heard again. Also included in this set is the first-ever DVD release by Soft Machine! It was recorded at the TV studios of Radio Bremen on the same date (March 23, 1971) as the radio session that Cuneiform released as Virtually, but is a completely different performance. This was the band's final European tour with Robert Wyatt and is a 20 minute set, professionally recorded by a multicamera crew. The audio and video quality is excellent for the time period (over 35 years old now!), as we worked from the original videotape master in the archives of Radio Bremen. Bottom line: another excellent and essential archival release from a great band!
Read a great review of Grides at All About Jazz
The Soft Machine fan owes Cuneiform a great deal of thanks for the many fantastic Soft Machine live releases they've given us in the last several years. This one is the best of the best. This is Soft Machine at is most powerful and agile. And with a fascinating bonus DVD included, you really can't go wrong here. If you're only going to get one live Soft Machine CD, make it this one.
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The DVD is fantastic, even if it is short and the CD is very good too.
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