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Floating World Live


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Audio CD, March 21, 2006
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Editorial Reviews

This CD marks the first release of a live performance by Soft Machine's Bundles line-up featuring Allan Holdsworth on guitar. This concert, recorded for Radio Bremen in Jan. 1975, consists of most of the Bundles material, which hadn't yet come out, although in the can since the previous summer, plus a couple of band improvs and solo showcases for Mike Ratledge, Roy Babbington and John Marshall. This era of Soft Machine was unique in that, taking the band's long established tradition of continuous change to an extreme, when Holdsworth joined all the previous repertoire was abandoned, literally at once, in favor of brand new material written by Karl Jenkins and, to a lesser extent, Mike Ratledge.

1. The Floating World
2. Bundles
3. Land Of The Big Snake
4. Ealing Comedy
5. The Man Who Waved At Trains
6. Peff
7. North Point
8. Hazard Profile (Part One)
9. J.S.M.
10. Riff III
11. Song Of Aeolus
12. Endgame
13. Penny Hitch (Coda)

Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 21, 2006)
  • Original Release Date: January 1, 2006
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Moonjune Records
  • ASIN: B000E3LHX2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,726 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By R.Cittern on June 10, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Finally a album live with Allan and also way better then British Tour 75. This album has great sound, better performances and has got a reasonable price on it,a clear pick over the other preformance. Live at Radio Bremen Janurary 1975 the band puts on nothing but nonstop jams with Holdsworth in a great mood just check out Bundles and The Land Of the Bagsnake of a blistering preformance. The show also gives out more solo showcases to Babbington on the six min. Earling Comedy armed with nothing but a Fender Baritone and a effects pedal. North Point gives Ratelege and his new found synths a place to bubble and screech around. Jenkins goes for his only sax solo on the album on Peff and even Holdsworth shows his skills on violin for The Man Who Waves At Trains. And finally the dynamic gymnastic stylings of Marshall on J.S.M. Song For Aeolus is very diffrent from the Softs vesion only because it brings out the fuzz soloing out of Ratelege's organ. The unreleashed material are your basic epic Softs jams like the funky Endgame. Rift 3 on the other hand is a limp version of Ban-Ban Caliban which isn't as impressing. Penny Hitch 2 took me some time to realize that it is Penny Hitch just in a sad and slow ending to a marvelous live cd. Highly recommended to anyone from gutar fanitic to a lover of fusion.
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26 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Mui H. Yuen on March 27, 2006
Format: Audio CD
With the release of Floating World Live, as of 2006 there were four CDs on the market -- two studio and two live discs -- representing the peak of Soft Machine's "guitar fusion" years. Bundles and Softs (studio) and Floating World Live and British Tour '75 (live) are all recommended to anyone for whom jazz-rock fusion doesn't cause a breakout in hives, with the live discs capturing inspired performances and having an edge over the studio efforts. The expertly recorded Floating World is clear evidence that Allan Holdsworth was just what Soft Machine needed in the mid-'70s. By the time this live German show had been (partially) captured by Radio Bremen in January 1975, Holdsworth had been with the band for slightly over a year, and the Softs had already recorded Bundles with him. This is a killer live set, and Holdsworth's lightning-fast scalar runs, wide-interval leaps, and expressive note-bending over the band's vamps and composer Karl Jenkins' chordal changes -- not to mention his prominent positioning in the mix -- make Floating World a must-hear for any fans of the blurry-fingered axeman. He plays a touch of beautiful violin as well. No wonder jaws were dropping all around -- and apparently including the jaws of his bandmates, for Floating World sounds rather less like the work of a fully collaborative band and more like a live date by a guitarist-led fusion outfit than the British Tour '75 recording from later that same year after John Etheridge had joined the group following Holdsworth's departure. The flow of the overall Floating World set is at least partially to blame for any slight comparative shortcomings, particularly during the first half but redeemed by some inspired playing from all quarters at the conclusion.Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Laura S. on June 9, 2009
Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
"Bundles" is the album where these jams really come together. It's a fully integrated album that moves from start to end as one hypnotic journey. Holdsworth's guitar amazes, but on repeat listenings it just carries you away. I consider Bundles to be one of the finest un-concept concept albums of all time. (Un-concept because of the lack of pretense.)

This album Floating World Live has the same numbers, but in different order. Much of it is the same, and it's marvelous in its own way. That's why I recommend this album.

Anyone who is into guitar mastery should get this album and Bundles, at the very least. (And look for Holdsworth elsewhere as he pops up here and there with other bands through the years.)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Scott DeMoss on March 13, 2009
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Floating World Live
I read where someone chose this as one of the perfect albums of all time, so after listening to a few samples, I ordered it through Amazon. I've been very happy with it. Sometimes it reminds me of Frank Zappa's instrumentals, which no other recording artist ever has done. The time signatures change frequently. From the early 70's, it's undoubtedly rock music, but it's not annoying or overblown or bomabastic. Soft Machine must have been an evolutionary fork in the road which never got followed up on by others, which is too bad. It could be called intellectual rock. It's very lively and the drum-work is amazing. There's an 8-minute drum solo which will give your subwoofer an amazing workout. Though I had never heard Soft Machine before, this album is now in my regular rotation and I'm happy to have discovered it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Richard Harry on August 3, 2010
Format: Audio CD
The album Floating World is an important document in the Soft Machine canon and should be treated accordingly. The album sound is a leap forward from the oft referred to album Third but bears repeated listening. To all with a passing interest in the music of the period,, both that emanating from the States and Europe, this should occupy a place in anyone's collection.
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