1. Crunch
  2. Pavan
  3. Jombles
  4. A Little Floating Music
  5. Hi-Power
  6. Little Miss B
  7. Splot
  8. Rubber Riff
  9. Sam's Short Shuffle
10. Melina
11. City Steps
12. Gentle Turn
13. Porky
14. Travelogue

This is a collection of recordings intended for Karl Jenkins' library music (for use in films, tv etc) but includes moments which would appear later on "Softs".

Recorded: April, 1976 at De Wolfe Studios, Soho, London
Released: 1994

Karl Jenkins: keyboards, flute, saxes
John Etheridge: acoustic & electric guitars
Roy Babbington: bass guitar
John Marshall: drums
Carol Barratt: keyboards

Karl Jenkins' Soft Machine - De Wolfe sessions;
lp-version (Turning Point Music - Italy, 2002);
Rubber Riff was also released on lp (Music de Wolfe, UK, 1976)

These sessions took place at De Wolfe studios in Soho, around April 1976. The project was instigated and composed by Karl Jenkins for library music use, and the other members of Soft Machine at the time, John Marshall, Roy Babbington and myself, played on the session. The line-up was augmented by Karl’s wife Carol Barratt, playing second keyboard (Mike Ratledge had left during January). As far as I can remember all the recording was completed in one day and the band played live in the studio – no overdubs being used. The music misses a lot of the characteristics of the Softs at that time – the extended high intensity solos obviously not present. Because of the line-up and the composer these sessions reveal its essential features of the band as it was in 1976.

* John Etheridge's liner notes

If you like Rubber Riff, you might like these as well:
Karl Jenkins and Mike Ratledge: Movement and Some Shufflin'
(cd - Voiceprint, 2010)
Is this a Karl Jenkins recording under a different name in a last ditch attempt to get his cruddy music sold? (compare this line with the text on Frank Zappa’s Cruisin’ with Ruben & the Jets album and you know what I mean). Let’s make one thing clear: Rubber Riff is not Soft Machine, it doesn’t even come near anything Soft Machine did or was. In fact this is indeed a Karl Jenkins recording session on which he asked his then band mates to join him and make some music. They did, probably for friend’s sake, but Soft Machine? No! The fourteen tracks were never meant to be released in this way; they were made for use as ‘library music’. That is a common action in the UK; many (famous) musicians record some music, which could be used for a movie, a commercial, a background for… you name it. The ‘what the music is’ is added with the tracks: ‘Crunch’ for instance is ‘driving, riffy, dramatic’ whereas ‘Pavan’ is ‘slow, dignified, slightly sad’. Pick your choice and run home slow. One more thing about this one, Karl Jenkins’ wife, Carol Barratt, is added as second keyboard player. Karl was used to the second/first keyboards from Mike Ratledge of course. But Mike had left the band. Later on Mike and Karl established a company for this kind of music and in 2010 there were two more cd’s released from the two men: Music for TV and film, parts one and two, aka ‘Some Shufflin’’ and ‘Movement’. If you like that kind of music, you’ll like Rubber Riff as well, if not, just forget about this one.

Paul Lemmens © 2014