Artist: The Orb
Album: Bicycles & Tricycles (2004)
The Orb are an English electronic music group known for popularising chill out music in the 1990s and spawning the genre of ambient house.
Slabs of dub, slices of surrealism, and disembodied "found" voices make their appearance on the latest offering by ambient dub commandos The Orb. Bicycles & Tricycles offers little in the Orb oeuvre that wasn't stated back on Orblivion and it's not the seismic paradigm shift of "Little Fluffy Clouds," but that's not to say there isn't plenty left in that fertile cumulus to explore. There's the Augustus Pablo melodica and dub bass on "Towers 23," and "Abstractions" lifts Frippertronics, something The Orb has been doing for over a decade. Except for a rap by MC Soom T on "Aftermath," the Orb has abandoned the trip-hop vocals of Cydonia. Instead, Bicycles & Tricycles returns to the original Orb concept which isn't about songs, but lysergic landscapes. Industrial grinds propel you through one moment, only to be untethered into infinite space the next, before being snagged into synchronicity by a dub groove. This album has been available as an import for a while, but the Orb's founder and master controller Alex Patterson has re-sequenced and re-mixed the disc into one of what are probably infinite permutations of flow. --John Diliberto