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Orbital tell us about what they’re listening to ahead of their tour


UK dance greats Orbital (aka Phil and Paul Hartnoll) released Monsters Exist, their first album since 2012, earlier this year which finds them still in excellent, blissed-out form. If you haven’t checked it out, you can stream the whole thing below. They’re gearing up for their first U.S. dates in six years, kicking things off at NYC’s Brooklyn Steel on December 4. Tickets are still available but if you’d like to go for free, we’re giving away a pair. Fill out our contest widget at the bottom of this post for your chance to win.

Orbital also play San Francisco (12/6) and Los Angeles (12/8) and, ahead of the tour, we asked Paul and Phil to tell us about what they’ve been listening to lately. Phil picked all dance singles while Paul chose albums that are a little more all over the map. Read about, and listen to, their picks below.

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Phil’s Picks:

Bicep – “Opal” (Four Tet Remix)
I love this remix because it stays true to the original. Its textures and layers build and build with such impressive percussion. The soundtrack to my sunset at the moment, all day long!

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Purple Velvet Curtains – “Don’t Stop”
This track has everything — growling bass line, great synths, catchy vocals. House music with a breaks vibe from one of my favourite labels.

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Mochakk — Dong (Original Mix)
A very clever track, with a great build-up to a thumping beat and bass line, I love the futuristic and creative vocals, and that “Dong” just sticks in your head.

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Billy Kenny – “Trippy”
This combination of artist and label is tech house brilliance. Really impressive production for the dance floor and the title says it all.

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Jack Beats – “Modulate”
A fantastic old school beat with unbelievable rolling and driving synth noises. Very effective on the dance floor, but watch out for those speed cameras!

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Paul’s Picks:

Floex & Tom Hodge – A Portrait of John Doe
Floex is Tomas Dvorak, a composer I discovered through his fantastic score for the game Machinarium. This is his new album with Tom Hodge which is three years in the making and utilising the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra. Atmospheric and moody, it’s an album that deserves a proper listen.

Gwenno – Le Kov
A Welsh singer whose previous album was sung in the Welsh language which I find well suited to song. For this one, however, she’s gone for the Cornish language and it sounds fab. Probably the only Cornish language album? Very dreamy, earthy and a little bit of a retro pop feel.

Matt Berry – Television Themes
He’s made the album us vinyl junkies scour the second hand record shops for. It sounds like it could be an album of TV theme tunes covered by a psychedelic band down on their luck…imagine they had been hired as session musicians by a corporate library record company that inject their own funky triply take on it while no one was paying attention. Well, it’s an album I’ve been searching for since the ’90s anyway. Also, Matt’s the only person I know who appreciates the theme tune from the show Sorry. A totally fun album. Please can we have the theme to Robins Nest on volume 2?

Gilroy Mere – The Green Line
From my favourite cottage industry record label, Clay Pipe, here’s a concept album about a southern English bus service designed to take people from the city and suburbs to the county and back. How lovely! What a shame it’s gone now! They used to run from the bus garage opposite my primary school in the village of Dunton Green where I grew up. If you watch the video for “Dunroamin” you can see it, and Sevenoaks bus garage which also an old hang out of mine.

Muse – Simulation Theory
What’s not to love? Like a collaboration between Aha and Meatloaf. Lots of people have been emulating the ’80s sound for a while now and often times sounding perfect, but without the killer tunes. Muse always deliver for me on the tunes-front, making this a fabulous romp through the retro past but with a backbone. Eighties retro progressive rock, how is that even possible? Better go and ask Doc Scott…


Orbital – 2018 / 2019 Tour Dates
DEC 04 Brooklyn Steel Tuesday, 8:00PM Brooklyn, NY
DEC 06 The Midway Thursday, 8:00PM San Francisco, CA
DEC 08 The Belasco Theater Saturday, 7:00PM Los Angeles, CA
DEC 15 Eventim Apollo Hammersmith Saturday, 7:00PM London, United Kingdom
DEC 16 O2 Academy Bristol Sunday, 7:00PM Bristol, United Kingdom
DEC 18 O2 Academy 2 Sheffield Tuesday, 7:00PM Sheffield, United Kingdom
DEC 19 Cambridge Corn Exchange Wednesday, 7:00PM Cambridge, United Kingdom
DEC 20 O2 Apollo Manchester Thursday, 7:00PM Manchester, United Kingdom
FEB 22 Splore Festival Friday, 7:00PM Orere Point, New Zealand
FEB 23 Electri Avenue Saturday, 7:00PM Christchurch, New Zealand
FEB 27 Triffid Wednesday, 7:30PM Newstead, Australia
FEB 28 Enmore Theatre Thursday, 7:30PM Newtown, Australia
MAR 01 Forum Theatre Friday, 7:00PM Melbourne, Australia
MAR 02 Pet Festival Saturday, 7:00PM Perth, Australia

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