Robert Wyatt formed the band in October 1971 after he left Soft Machine and recorded his first solo album The End of an Ear. He continued his role on vocals and drums and was joined by David Sinclair, of Caravan, on organ and piano, Phil Miller on guitar and Bill MacCormick, formerly of Quiet Sun, on bass. The name is a pun on Machine Molle, the French translation of the name of Wyatt's previous group Soft Machine. Their first, eponymous album was released in April 1972, the bulk of which was composed by Wyatt himself, with the exception of "O Caroline" (a Dave Sinclair composition with lyrics by Wyatt about his recent breakup with girlfriend Caroline Coon) and Phil Miller's "Part Of The Dance". For their second album, Matching Mole's Little Red Record, released in November 1972 and produced by Robert Fripp, Sinclair was replaced by New Zealand-born keyboard player and composer Dave MacRae who had already played a guest role on the first album. Matching Mole disbanded in late September 1972 immediately upon completion of a European tour supporting Soft Machine, with Sinclair and Miller going on to form the more successful Hatfield and the North.