Exposé Online banner

Soft Machine Legacy — Live Adventures
(Moonjune MJR036, 2011, CD)

by Jeff Melton, Published 2011-06-01

Live Adventures Cover art

With the sad passings of Canterbury icons Elton Dean and Hugh Hopper, the reformulated quartet continues to carry on convincingly in the vein of the great icon of British Jazz. Now led by the voices of Theo Travis' saxophone and John Etheridge's guitar, the group is more adept at covering a myriad of jazz and compositional styles new and historical. The gigs comprise two 2009 European shows, appearing to be the best of each set for the quartet. "Has Riff II" is an organic group improvisation that opens up the live set in floating ambient mode led by Travis' flute. The piece compares well to Jade Warrior before Etheridge tears it up with drummer John Marshall. The guitarist's own compositions work better on the live stage with "Grapehound" and "In the Back Room" showing much of the characteristic finesse he has come to champion in his long career. Travis' own compositions take the group in a different but alluring direction as well. The group is keen to pull from early and later compositions from the catalog, including those by Karl Jenkins: "The Nodder," "Gesolreut" and "Song of Aeolus" from 1976's Softs. Marshall's excellent cymbal work begins the first piece while Travis emotes the melody line previously played by violin. Bassist Roy Babbington has stepped back into the fold on firm footing as evidenced by his rooted playing across the disc. In summary this live band is not only the closest thing we have to classic Soft Machine but also furthers the legacy without tainting it.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 39, 2011 releases

Related artist(s): Soft Machine, Soft Machine Legacy / Soft Works, Theo Travis, John Etheridge

More info
http://softmachine-moonjune.bandcamp.com/album/live-adventures

Latest news

2019-11-07
Glenn Smith RIP – Glenn Smith, founder, mandolinist, and primary composer of the DeLand, Florida based prog / fusion band Magnatar, passed away on October 18th 2019 at the age of 68, after a brief illness.  » Read more

2019-11-04
Dino Brassea RIP – Word reaches us of the passing of Dino Brassea, who sang and played flute in Cast for many years. By our count, Brassea appeared on 11 Cast albums between 1994 and 2002. He also released music as a solo artist. » Read more

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Beardfish - Sleeping In Traffic: Part Two – Beardfish’s rise to prominence is due to hard work and good music, as long as your tastes run toward the sort of modern prog that pays homage to classic 70s bands. Main man Rikard Sjöblom is one of...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues