April 28 saw the release of Prism, the eighteenth Orb studio album already being hailed as their most towering set for years. In September 2023, The Orb reunited with David Gilmour to follow 2010’s Metallic Spheres with Metallic Spheres In Colour (sleeve again by Ghahary). 2024 will be graced by an up-to-date Best of The Orb set.
With Alex Paterson always setting the controls for the perfect ambient flight, dance groove or exploring previously unknown vistas, The Orb initially manifested as visionary mischief-makers in 1988’s acid house revolution, taking “ambient house” to number one in the album charts accompanied by his parallel devotion to the art of DJing and very British sense of humour. Always working with telepathic sonic lieutenants, Alex’s latest forays have been achieved with the brilliant Michael Rendall.
Battersea-born Alex started roadying (sometimes singing with) Killing Joke in 1979 before joining EG Records as an A&R man in 1982. His life was set on its subsequent path by the onset of acid house around 1987 when he injected chillout calm DJing at Paul Oakenfold’s Land Of Oz club with Jimmy Cauty, playing ambient sounds and dub. After starting the WAU! Label with Youth, Alex launched The Orb with Jimmy Cauty, releasing 1988’s The Kiss EP in tribute to New York’s ground-breaking eighties radio stations that still influence his musical attitude today. He then hijacked Minnie Riperton’s ‘Loving You’ for ’89’s epic breakthrough ‘A Huge Pulsating Brain That Rules From The Centre Of The Ultraworld’.