A British fusion/progressive rock group named after the book of the same name. They were a central band in the Canterbury Scene of musicians. They started off as a psychedelic band, performing at the UFO club of Pink Floyd fame. Their best album is, without a doubt, Third, which is fusion in the style of Miles Davis's Bitches Brew. It's very trippy.
Some famous members were Robert Wyatt, Mike Ratledge, Hugh Hopper, Kevin Ayers, and Allan Holdsworth.
I was listening to Third by Soft Machine, and it was so awesome that everybody came over and had a good time.