Soft Machine

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Soft Machine was a British progressive rock group, active during the 1960s and 1970s. They took their name from a novel by William S. Burroughs.

Reportedly, Soft Machine's second album "Volume Two" (1969) was inspired by Zappa's album Absolutely Free (1967). [1]

Acting on a recommendation from Zappa, the band split the main tracks into smaller pieces to increase the band's income from the album.[2]
Bass player Hugh Hopper said: "We were going back to the jazz thing, and I was very influenced by Frank Zappa. Our heroes were more jazz men than rock musicians." [3]

Soft Machine also performed at the Actuel Festival in Amougies, Belgium. They were the act before Captain Beefheart that night.

In Michael King's biography about Robert Wyatt, Wrong Movements, in the entry for September 23, 1967, light technician Mark Boyle is quoted as saying: "We were supposed to open for The Mothers of Invention at the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, but Frank Zappa wouldn't let us, saying: 'Anyone can open for us except Soft Machine".