Album of the Year 2010: Number 9

The Orb featuring David Gilmour: Metallic Spheres (Columbia) [9.0]


There’s just much that’s right about this collaboration that I don’t know where to start. I’ve always enjoyed The Orb’s music, right from my first encounter with them and U.F. Orb (yep, I missed the debut), which I still consider their best album.

They’ve gone up and down in my estimations over the years but have always put a lot into their music and their style is most certainly their own.

So to then bring in one of the greatest musician of our time, and not just have him featuring in an, ‘hey let’s have some Gilmour guitar playing on here’, but to actually give the man the respect he’s due by giving him a large chunk of input in the recording, planning, and producing and you’re setting yourself up for a classic.

The CD contains two tracks, Metallic Spheres/Hymns to the Sun/Black Graham/Hiding in Plain View/Classified and Es Vedra/Hymn to the Sun (Reprise)/Olympic/Chicago Dub/Bold Knife Trophy and if you’re a clever little so and so, you’ll go out and get the version with the bonus disc, containing the 3D60 Version (the same tracks but different).

This is one of the few in the ten that I loved on first listen, mainly due to the ever present sound of Gilmour, his guitar, his voice, his style and marrying it with The Orb’s ambient electronic sound just seems so effortless, so obvious that you wonder why they haven’t worked together before.

Unlike some of the other albums in the chart, this is one that can be listened to easily, in the background, yet I have enjoyed it the most in a dark room, the headphones on, resulting in 48 minutes of absolute bliss.

Here’s a taster of what you’ll get when you get around to getting the album, and as you watch this I’ll go and dig out some of my old Floyd stuff (don’t worry though I’ll be back tomorrow with number eight – which may come as a shock to a couple reading this).

The great David Gilmour works on Metallic Spheres

About Mark S. Deniz

English teacher, writer, editor, publisher, reviewer and blogger. Founder of publishing company, Morrigan Books and imprint, Gilgamesh Press and editor-in-chief for review site, Beyond Fiction. Also cycles, plays floorball, listens to lots and lots of music, reads a ton of books and tries to fit in some TV, film and writing too. View all posts by Mark S. Deniz

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