Orbital Blue Album

Orbital Blue Album

After seven albums and 15 years together, Orbital’s brotherly duo, Phil and Paul Hartnoll, are calling it quits. Blue Album is their swan song, and a fine way to bow out. Like their best albums, it should be listened to from start to finish. There are dance floor and cinematic moments that are sequenced with great flow. There aren’t many samples or studio and laptop tricks, which allows their synth programming and original melodies to shine through. This shows especially well on tracks like "Lost,” which could be straight out of Blade Runner, and "Tunnel Vision,” which manages to mix industrial beats and stabs with melodic strings and bells. The dance floor-friendly tracks are "Pants,” which begins with a bouncy electro beat and bass line that quickly becomes quite trance-y, and "Acid Pants,” which is a plain old acid-trance track that could whip up any crowd. There are also a few melodic interludes that use harpsichords, strings and gentle beats to link the longer, faster tracks. The album ends with the anthem "One Perfect Sunrise,” which may be the first time Lisa Gerrard has knowingly contributed vocals to a dance track, instead of being sampled. It’s the best example of their ability to put melody and beats into a spaced-out, exciting mix. It’s good to end on a high note, and they’ve done it. (ATO)