Bit of a strange one this, Mrs CTel chooses ambient godfathers The Orb. But before anyone worries about 40 minutes of whale noise, this is an untypically upbeat Orb track.

The Orb is Alex Paterson with various collaborators over the years. Best known for playing chess on Top Of The Pops (for 40 minute single “Blue Room”), this ex-Killing Joke roadie has done it all. The Orb virtually invented the electronic genre known as ambient house, resurrecting slower, more soulful rhythms and providing a soundtrack for early-morning ravers once the clubs had closed their doors. Alex’s formula was quite simple: he slowed down the rhythms of classic Chicago house and added synth work and effects inspired by ’70s ambient pioneers Brian Eno and Tangerine Dream.

Mrs CTel has chosen 1997 single Toxygene. This was originally commissioned as a remix of Jean Michel Jarre‘s “Oxygene 8”. However, The Orb “obliterated it” and reassembled only a few fragments for their remix, much to the chagrin of Jarre, who reportedly “threw a fit and refused to release it”. The Orb released the track themselves under the name “Toxygene”, which further irritated Jarre, to whom Paterson retorted “The French are always five years behind us, anyway.”. Meanwhile, Mrs CTel says:

This one will keep your pedals going round even cycling straight into a gale with your teeth clenched and your little legs on fire (aaah the memories). No words even to distract you, just a hypnotic relentless beat that hooks you and a skilfully layered melody to keep you entranced all the way through. Simple and very effective. Give it a try even if you’ve never owned a bike – it can be enjoyed just as much in more civilised conditions.

mp3: The Orb – Toxygene (Radio Edit)

mp3 : The Orb – Toxygene (Kris Needs Up For A Fortnight Mix)*

*for those who want it dancier

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