The Orb tour venues
The Orb Tickets
The Orb – The 2015 Tour
Whether they are playing in Ireland, Scotland, the United States, or Britain, The Orb cranks up the energy to deliver an unforgettable performance. Don't miss out on this opportunity to see this iconic electro act. Get your tickets today!
About The Orb
The Orb basically invented and popularized ambient house, topping charts in the U.K. with 1992's U.F.Orb. Leader Dr. Alex Paterson's method involved slowing the beat of Chicago house and adding 'seventies-style synth work. With obscure vocal samples looped in, the tracks otherwise lacked singing.
In the 'eighties, Paterson was a roadie with Killing Joke and was influenced by the decades' Chicago house scene in England. He did A&R for EG Records and first appeared with Jimi Cauty as The Orb. The pair's first release, 1988's "Tripping on Sunshine", was unsuccessful. The Orb issued the EP Kiss in May 1989, dedicated to KISS-FM in New York. Paterson was a London DJ by this time, and was recruited for the Land of Oz room at Paul Oakenfield's club Heaven.
Paterson's ambient material used an array of samples, from special effects to NASA space broadcasts. Mixed with the work of ambient pioneers Steve Hillage and Brian Eno, his sets became popular among worn-out club kids. Hillage was in the room when Paterson happened to sample his album Rainbow Dome Musick. They became friends and recorded together on various projects.
The Orb's first attempt at ambient house was the 22-minute track "A Huge Ever Growing Pulsating Brain That Rules from the Centre of the Ultraworld" and landed on the U.K. charts. It was popular with both indie kids and club DJs, earning Cauty and Paterson the chance to release it on a 1989 John Peel session.
In 1990, Dave Stewart asked the duo to remix his song "Lilly Was Here". Both the original and the remix made the U.K. Top 20. The Orb remixed more than 20 other artists before Paterson started cutting back his remix work in 1992.
The Orb had been crafting an album in 1989 and 1990, but they split in 1990. Cauty cut Paterson's work out of the records and issued a self-titled album later that year. Meanwhile, Paterson was working with Youth on his song "Little Fluffy Clouds". The single arrived in November of 1990, enraging Rickie Lee Jones, whose conversation with actor LeVar Burton was sampled for the track. They settled out of court.
Youth's other projects prevented him from committing to The Orb full-time, so Paterson recruited Kris "Thrash" Weston who had recently left the band Fortran 5. Paterson and Weston had their debut live performance at Town & Country 2 in London in 1991 with Hillage playing guitar. The outfit's concerts became their trademark, breaking down the boundaries between rock and electro.
Still, The Orb had yet to release an album. In April of 1991, The Orb finally released Adventures Beyond the Ultraworld in England to critical acclaim. Its audience included the general public, landing in the Top 30 in Britain. A few months later, they were signed to American label Ultraworld. The Orb toured Europe in 1991 and assembled their initial two Peel Sessions in November. The following month, they released a Christmas special entitled The Aubrey Mixes. The record, a remix collection with interpretations by Cauty, Youth, and Hillage, was deleted the day it was released, but still managed to make it into the U.K.'s Top 50.
The U.K. Top Ten "Blue Room" arrived in 1992. The record U.F.Orb appeared that July. It was a chart-topper in Britain and was critically acclaimed. The single "Assassin" appeared in October and rose to number 12. The U.S. release of the album occurred in December.
Starting in 1993, The Orb struck a dry spell due to Big Life Records' controversial push to reissue early singles. The pair threatened to issue no new material until the label backed off, and negotiations stalled. Meanwhile, Big Life reissued two 12" releases and five CD singles, including "Perpetual Dawn" and "Little Fluffy Clouds". Finally, Paterson was signed to Island in 1993 and issued Live 93. The Orb's first official Island release, Pomme Fritz, arrived in 1994. Departing from ambient house, it was more harshly industrial than their first two albums. It rose to number six in Britain but was critically maligned. Weston's role diminished significantly on the album, and he left The Orb in 1995. Before parting ways, they performed at the famed Woodstock 2 with Deee-Lite, Aphex Twin, and Orbital.
Weston was replaced by Thomas Fehlmann. The new team released Orbus Terrarum almost three years after U.F.Orb. They clearly departed from ambient house with natural samples and dense rhythms. The new Orb undertook an ambitious worldwide tour in 1995, and issued Orblivion in 1997. The greatest-hits U.F.Off arrived in 1998, and their fifth studio release Cydonia was completed soon after, though Island didn't issue it until after the new millennium.
The Orb shifted to the Sanctuary label for the 2004 album Bicycles & Tricycles. In 2005, another label changed worked its way into the album name Okie Dokie, It's the Orb on Kompakt. In 2007, The Dream arrived with a new lineup that included Youth and Tim Bran. The album arrived in 2008 in America on Six Degrees. The following year, the Orbsessions series arrived. Youth joined in again on Metallic Spheres along with David Gilmour. 2011's C Batter C was a remix album, and the 2012 release The Orbserver in the Star House featured Lee "Scratch" Perry. The History of the Future box sets were followed by a return to Kompakt for 2015's Moonbuilding 2703 AD.
The Orb's biggest albums in the United States include Orbus Terrarum, Orblivion, Cydonia, Bicycles and Tricycles, Metallic Spheres, The Orbserver in the Star House, and More Tales from the Orbservatory. Their most successful singles are "Perpetual Dawn", "Little Fluffy Clouds," and "Blue Room".
The visually trance-like performances of The Orb have prompted critics to liken the act to Pink Floyd.
The Orb Concert Experience
Prepare yourself for the most unique and energetic concert in the electro scene today. The Orb is hot off the release of Moonbuilding 2703 AD and all set to bring you their amazing repertoire of pioneering electro tracks straight to your ears. Don't miss out – start planning your concert experience with The Orb today!
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