The Orb

Long-running UK electronic group, originally formed by Jimmy Cauty (of The KLF) and Alex Paterson in 1988, that grew out of a love of ambient music and dub, soundscapes and science fiction. Due to the early work in this style, The Orb became pioneers of the early-90's-born "ambient house" genre. The group's lineup has shifted over the years, with Alex being the only consistent member. Notable members include Thrash and Thomas Fehlmann. Though he was never officially a member, Youth (a.k.a. Martin Glover) was instrumental throughout the group's existence, and co-owned the label WAU! Mr. Modo Recordings with Alex (they had known each other since they were young, and Alex was a roadie for the group Killing Joke, in which Youth played bass).


BLR LP14, 511811-1 The Orb - Aubrey Mixes: The Ultraworld Excursions album art The Orb Aubrey Mixes: The Ultraworld Excursions (Album) Big Life, Big Life, Big Life BLR LP14, 511811-1 UK 1991 Sell This Version
DEI8119-2 The Orb - Peel Sessions album art The Orb Peel Sessions Strange Fruit, Strange Fruit DEI8119-2 US 1991 Sell This Version
BLRDCD 5, 847963-2 The Orb - The Orb's Adventures Beyond The Ultraworld album art Orb* The Orb's Adventures Beyond The Ultraworld (Album, Comp) Big Life, Big Life BLRDCD 5, 847963-2 UK & Europe 1991 Sell This Version
ATTP 9109 The Orb - Let The Music Take Control / Perpetual Dawn album art Cartouche / The Orb Cartouche / The Orb - Let The Music Take Control / Perpetual Dawn(LP) Attic ATTP 9109 Canada 1991 Sell This Version
74321 1070 14 The Orb - U.F.Orb album art The Orb U.F.Orb (Album, Comp) Big Life, Big Life, WAU! Mr. Modo Recordings, WAU! Mr. Modo Recordings 74321 1070 14 Germany 1992 Sell This Version
CIDD 8022, 518 746-2 The Orb - Live 93 album art Orb* Live 93 (Album) Island Records CIDD 8022, 518 746-2 UK & Europe 1993 Sell This Version
none The Orb - Pomme Fritz album art Orb* Pomme Fritz (MiniAlbum, Album) Island Records, Island Records, Inter-Modo, Inter-Modo none France 1994 Sell This Version
PHCR-1777 The Orb - Orbus Terrarum album art Orb* Orbus Terrarum (Album) Island Records, Island Records PHCR-1777 Japan 1995 Sell This Version
CID 8055, 524 347-2 The Orb - Orblivion album art Orb* Orblivion (Album) Island Records, Island Records CID 8055, 524 347-2 UK 1997 Sell This Version
none The Orb - Cydonia album art The Orb Cydonia (Album) Island Records, Island Records none UK 1999 Sell This Version
V2CP 153 The Orb - Bicycles & Tricycles album art The Orb Bicycles & Tricycles (Album) Cooking Vinyl V2CP 153 Japan 2003 Sell This Version
KOMPAKT CD 45, KOMPAKT CD45 The Orb - Okie Dokie It's The Orb On Kompakt album art The Orb Okie Dokie It's The Orb On Kompakt (Album) Kompakt, Kompakt KOMPAKT CD 45, KOMPAKT CD45 Germany 2005 Sell This Version
MD603 The Orb - Orbsessions Volume One album art The Orb Orbsessions Volume One (Album) Malicious Damage MD603 UK 2005 Sell This Version
none The Orb - The Dream album art The Orb The Dream (Album) LSD - Liquid Sound Design none UK 2007 Sell This Version
XECD-1115 The Orb - Baghdad Batteries (Orbsessions Volume III) album art The Orb Baghdad Batteries (Orbsessions Volume III) (Album) Malicious Damage XECD-1115 Japan 2009 Sell This Version
8869 776044-2 The Orb - Metallic Spheres album art The Orb Featuring David Gilmour The Orb Featuring David Gilmour - Metallic Spheres (Album) Columbia, Sony Music 8869 776044-2 Argentina 2010 Sell This Version
none The Orb - Michna & Dust La Rock Mix The Orb album art Michna* & Dust La Rock Mix The Orb Michna* & Dust La Rock Mix The Orb - Michna & Dust La Rock Mix The Orb(Cass, Ltd, Mixed, Num) Skyway Records (6) none US 2010 Sell This Version
MD704 The Orb - C Batter C album art The Orb C Batter C (Album) Malicious Damage MD704 UK 2011 Sell This Version
COOKLP555 The Orb - The Orbserver In The Star House album art The Orb Featuring Lee Scratch Perry* The Orb Featuring Lee Scratch Perry* - The Orbserver In The Star House (Album) Cooking Vinyl COOKLP555 Europe 2012 Sell This Version
BRC-381 The Orb - More Tales From The Orbservatory album art The Orb Featuring Lee Scratch Perry* The Orb Featuring Lee Scratch Perry* - More Tales From The Orbservatory (Album) Cooking Vinyl BRC-381 Japan 2013 Sell This Version
LSD91 The Orb - All Is Not Lost, But Where Is It? album art Suns Of Arqa Featuring Youth, Raja Ram & The Orb Suns Of Arqa Featuring Youth, Raja Ram & The Orb - All Is Not Lost, But Where Is It?(CD, Album) LSD - Liquid Sound Design LSD91 UK 2015 Sell This Version
none The Orb - Further Adventures Beyond Dark Matter Live album art The Orb Further Adventures Beyond Dark Matter Live Abbey Road Live Here Now none 2014 Sell This Version
BRC-474 The Orb - Moonbuilding 2703 AD album art The Orb Moonbuilding 2703 AD (Album) Kompakt BRC-474 Japan 2015 Sell This Version
none The Orb - Somewhere Over The Rainbow (Bristol UK 1992) album art The Orb Somewhere Over The Rainbow (Bristol UK 1992)(Cass, Ltd, Red) Dublab none US 2015 Sell This Version
KOM 354 The Orb - COW / Chill Out, World! album art Orb* COW / Chill Out, World! (Album) Kompakt KOM 354 Germany 2016 Sell This Version

Reviews Show All 32 Reviews

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April 1, 2020
edited 4 months ago
Counterpoint to the commenter below me: Do bother with anything after '94. While those first three albums with Thrash are all pretty easily among their strongest work, they've still been putting out plenty of great material without him for years after the fact. I for one love Toxygene and the stuff they were doing immediately after Orbus Terrarum, and all their albums since have had different interesting flavors to them that make them all worth checking out (I personally hold The Dream on par with their early stuff, love it to bits, but I get that's not everyone's cup of tea, if you like their more ambient stuff make sure you check out Okie Dokie or Chill Out World or Moonbuilding). Paterson and company have stayed creative and engaging years after their prime, even to this day (No Sounds Are Out Of Bounds and Abolition Of The Royal Familia are great too), so don't sleep on their most recent stuff either.


August 12, 2019
Don't bother with anything after '94, for better or worse Trash was the visionary of the Orb, compare their Live 93 to Toxygene, worlds apart. Hughes or Falconer really didn't get remotely close.


April 8, 2018
The Orb — a name derived from Woody Allen’s sci-fi film, "Sleepers". [Frank Hoffman, "Encyclopedia of Recorded Sound (2nd Edition)" (Routledge, 2004), p. 778.]


January 13, 2017
The Orb is perhaps the best-known name in mainstream Ambient music, and for all the right reasons. Since the end of the 1980s, Alex Paterson and a changing list of collaborators have produced chilled-out, ecstatic grooves and fluffy, flowing remixes for dancers greeting the dawn.
Their output is every bit as brilliant and stunning as the rising sun after a long night of physical flow and endless four/four pounding. Multicolored synth lines run like a watercolor palette in the rain. They layer blissful selections from Pink Floyd, Minnie Riperton, Ennio Morricone and Rickie Lee Jones to create a harmonious pastiche of original music, seamless samples and astute dialog.
...As the Orb's pulsating harmonies weave self-contained ecosystems of sound, delirious beats climb up the mix like vines, heavy with sweet fruit, ready for plucking.


January 31, 2016
Always been very keen on both The Orb and Pink Floyd so was very excited and not disappointed by The Orb and Dave Gilmour's 'Metallic Spheres' so why isn't it here?!


January 2, 2016
Has Alex Paterson's reggae collection surfaced on discogs?


December 8, 2015
edited over 5 years ago
There were some bald persons shouting "I hope you fall down!" to Alex at Quart '94. I didn't agree.


June 13, 2014
This is quite an incendiary piece by Thrash. It's quite long, but a good read.


August 15, 2011
edited over 9 years ago
well i have to say i am stunned, shocked, and totally in disbelief that unless there is some glitch with Discogs, that there are only 2 reviews on the Orb - surely that can't be.......well i am not going to say too much about them as im sure if your a collector or in to their releases & remixes, then there is nothing i can say that hasn't already been thought or said (sounds like the ramblings that should be an excerpt from one of their outings)!!!

having said that, Alex has continued on this banwagon for what seems like 25 yrs now and the releases just got better and better (and stranger to some degree - POMME FRITZ) but also have to say that in the latter yrs, their stuff hasn't been quite right - don't know what is, but there is a distinct lack of some input or direction. trust me i never thought i would say this about the orb, but i think I prefer the orb releases (especially albums) up until about the point of Bicyles & Tricycles - sure there have been some odd toots that have come along which in my opinion are scrapings from older projects revamped to get an album out - and don't get me wrong, there were some standout pieces amongst them, but overall, nowadays their seems to be something .......Andy Hughes & Thomas Fehlmann (forgive if thats mispelt). i wished they would get back in the studio with thrash and get some good old classics reborn into 2011 and beyond cos i tell you now, together - these guys knew how.

i am not going to rave about their individual set pieces, but those who are new to this genre and particularly The Orb, my advice is definitely start with their earlier stuff from 1991 - 2001 as this was the decade it was all IMO unfortunately i think if you checked their most recent ensembles from the last 10 yrs, there is too many changes on the collaborations front and although change is good in some cases, i think overall, it has killed what is some of my fondest moments in ambient history.

apologies to all that disagree with this, it is only my personal opinion and is no way meant as a discredit to The Orb or Mr P as im sure if you check my keen interest and enthusiasm with the orb (by viewing my collection) and their material, i own nearly everything thats has come out and for the record, some that hasn't come out. i also have an extensive collection of bootleg and live mixes from their Live performances......put it this way - if you liked the LIVE 93 album, you aint heard nothing until you've heard and experienced listening to the actual LIVE recordings of the 3 night performances in Tokyo 93 - it is truly amazing and will leave a true orb fan speechless (especially if monged out ha ha)!!!



February 12, 2003
I agree that The Orb are a fantastic collective and produce some of the most remarkable remixes I've ever heard. I must add though that The Pink Floyd Remixes were not created by Alex Patterson (only remaining founder member) or any other member of The Orb collective, but by an dj from America who realised that the bootleg cd would sell faster with the Orb label rather than his own. Please don't let this prevent you from tracking down and buying the remixes though - they are very good. I've been a collector of Orb merchandise since the Kiss e.p. and own every single item released (and some that never were or will be due to copyright problems), I've seen The orb perform live too many time to count and have interviewed Alex and other members of the group on several occasions for various different publications on a variety of different subjects.
Keep your eyes peeled for the new album due for release at some point this year, working title "Orbisnowhere".

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