Orbus Terrarum

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Orbus Terrarum
Orbus Terrarum.jpg
Studio album by The Orb
Released 20 March 1995
Genre Ambient house, dub
Length 79:18
Label Island
Producer Alex Paterson, Andy Hughes, Thomas Fehlmann, Kris Weston
The Orb chronology
Pomme Fritz
Orbus Terrarum
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[1]
Entertainment Weekly A[2]
Spin 7/10[3]
Almost Cool 9/10[4]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars[5]

Orbus Terrarum is the third studio album of electronic music artist The Orb released on Island Records in 1995.

Before leaving The Orb, member Kris Weston had begun work on Orbus Terrarum. However, when he left The Orb, German producer Thomas Fehlmann joined as a full-time studio member. The Orb, now consisting of Alex Paterson, Andy Hughes, and Fehlmann, finished producing Orbus Terrarum. Unlike previous albums by The Orb, Orbus Terrarum featured more "earthbound" and "organic" sounds instead of the trippy science fiction themed music they had previously written.[6][7] Orbus Terrarum suffered, as Paterson described it, "a good kicking" at the hands of the British press,[8] who described it as "generic ambient music"[9] and stated that it was a low point for Paterson's creativity.[10] Orbus Terrarum further alienated many of the group's fans as they had with Pomme Fritz,[11] causing the album to only reach No. 20 on the UK charts, much lower than their previous albums.[12] American critics, however, gave it great acclaim, including Rolling Stone who made it their album of the month, citing the album's symphonic flow coupled with The Orb's "uniquely British wit".[13]

A quote from Tony Benn, Labour MP, graces the inner case of the 1995 release and the CD booklet of the 2008 re-issue. It says, "There may be a legal obligation to obey, but there will be no moral obligation to obey. When it comes to history, it will be the people who broke the law for freedom that will be remembered and honoured."

In 2008, Orbus Terrarum was remastered and released with a bonus remix disc. The package includes liner notes written by Kris Needs.

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Valley" Alex Paterson, Kris Weston, Simon Phillips, Tom Green 7:36
2. "Plateau" Paterson, Weston, Thomas Fehlmann 13:18
3. "Oxbow Lakes" Paterson, Weston, Fehlmann 7:28
4. "Montagne d'Or (Der Gute Berg)" Paterson, Andy Hughes, B. J. Cole, Weston, Nick Burton, Fehlmann 10:41
5. "White River Junction" Paterson, Weston, Fehlmann 9:36
6. "Occidental" Paterson, Hughes, Kris Needs, Weston, Burton, Phillips, Fehlmann 13:54
7. "Slug Dub" Paterson, Weston, Paul Ferguson, Fehlmann 17:03
Total length: 79:18
Remix disc
No. Title Length
1. "Plateau (All Hands on Deck Mix – 2AM)" 15:45
2. "Slug Dub (Dumpy Dub)" 12:30
3. "Valley (Mix 3 Dubby)" 10:55
4. "White River Junction (Zoom Vinegar Mix)" 13:05
5. "Oxbow Lakes (Andy's Space Mix)" 8:45
6. "Peace Pudding (Occidental)" 13:31
Total length: 74:31


  1. ^ John Bush (1995-04-04). "Orbus Terrarum - The Orb | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 2015-11-19. 
  2. ^ Entertainment Weekly (4/14/95, p.64) - "...London's premiere ambient-trance group does it again. Splicing samples of old sci-fi flicks and children's shows, Orb has unleashed another excrutiatingly funky disc....Bongs optional..." - Rating: A
  3. ^ Spin (7/95, p.77) - 7 - Flawed Yet Worthy - "...Taking some tips from Jamaica's funky four plus one more...the Orb has combined the smoothest of the old flavors and distilled 'em, chilled 'em, and illed 'em into something more akin to ambient rock with a marked absence of narrative..."
  4. ^ "The Orb - Orbus Terrarum - almost cool music review". Almostcool.org. Retrieved 2015-11-19. 
  5. ^ [1] Archived 1 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ Doerschuck, Robert (June 1995). "Inside the Ambient Techno Ultraworld". Keyboard Magazine. 
  7. ^ Gill, Andy (31 March 1995). "Oh, the Pity and Terra of It All". The Independent. p. 31. 
  8. ^ "Alex Paterson Interview". Future N Music. October 1998. 
  9. ^ Sinclair, David (24 March 1995). "Pop on Friday". The Times. p. 1. 
  10. ^ Simpson, Dave (19 January 2001). "The Friday Interview". The Guardian. p. 6. 
  11. ^ Wiederhorn, Jon (19 March 1997). "The Orb: Orblivion". Rolling Stone. 
  12. ^ "The Orb". Everyhit.com. Archived from the original on 19 March 2008. Retrieved 24 October 2006. 
  13. ^ Wiederhorn, Jon (2 February 1998). "The Orb: Orbus Terrarum". Rolling Stone. 

External links[edit]