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Orbital (band)

From Academic Kids

Orbital was an English electronic music duo formed in 1989 (1989 in music) consisting of brothers Paul and Phil Hartnoll. Orbital took its name from the raves that occurred in the late 1980s near the M25 orbital motorway that circles London. In 1989, they recorded a track called "Chime" on their father's four-track and got it signed to Oh Zone Records. When it was re-released on FFRR Records, it became a rave anthem, a UK Top 20 hit in early 1990, and a benchmark for the rest of their career. They eventually became known for their live shows, wearing their trademark head-mounted flashlights behind banks of equipment, and giving an improvisational element to live electronic music as the brothers mixed and sequenced their tracks on the fly.

Their third album, Snivilisation, features vocals from Alison Goldfrapp on two of the tracks.

Orbital remade the theme tune to The Saint for the film remake; this is featured on some editions of In Sides, their fourth album. They also made a version of the Doctor Who theme tune, featured on The Altogether. As well as this, they created two original soundtracks for the films Event Horizon and Octane. Orbital created the song Technologicque Park for the film xXx in which they actually appear in the the film during the nightclub/rave sequence.

They played a last series of gigs from June through July 2004 at the Glastonbury Festival, the T In The Park Festival in Scotland, the Oxegen festival (formaly known as Witnness) in Ireland, and the Wire Festival in Japan, concluding with a live Peel Session gig at Maida Vale Studios in London in July 2004. The release of their seventh and last original album, The Blue Album, coincided with this final wave of shows.

Orbital split up in 2004. Phil Hartnoll is continuing to record music under his own name, including tracks for the new Wipout Pure game for the PSP. Paul Hartnoll is concentrating on DJ gigs and is also collaborating with other techno artists.

Orbital is not to be confused with The Orb, a similarly named band that has also been very influential in the realm of electronic music. To make matters more confusing, The Orb often did remixes of other artists' songs and called the result an "Orbital Mix", but these remixes have nothing to do with the band Orbital. The Orb stopped this practice after Orbital became popular, hoping to not cause any more confusion.

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