Orbital at the Royal Albert Hall, a quick review

Last night I went to the Royal Albert Hall as a very lucky guest of DWPub’s Daryl Willcox and his partner Rachel Fielding.

We were there to see recently reformed Orbital, a.k.a. the group that got me into dance music. Be still my beating heart.

I can remember the exact moment I fell in love with dance actually. It was 1995, I was watching the start of a film called ‘Hackers’, and this happened…

The rest of the movie was entertaining enough to earn a spot in my all-time top ten favourite films ever, in the world, ever (it’s still there) – but it took me a while to work out that the track was Halcyon by Orbital.

There was no Shazam, in fact, I didn’t even own a phone – nor iTunes or Amazon to look up the soundtrack.

Eventually I found it though, and listened to religiously. Over the years Orbital has remixed the track to include samples from You Give Love a Bad Name by Bon Jovi, Heaven Is a Place on Earth by Belinda Carlisle, and most recently I Believe in a Thing Called Love by The Darkness. We were treated to the first two last night.


Warm-up The Japanese Popstars were also thoroughly enjoyable, and sounded a lot like… Orbital. Figures.

The venue was wonderful, and Orbital delivered a near-perfect set filled with classics (finishing with Chime, of course) mixed with new material from their NEW ALBUM Wonky. Released just a few weeks ago.

Last summer I saw Underworld play Sonar in Barcelona. The crowd was filled with hardcore fans, and that feeling of reclaimed belonging powered their pogoing frenzy. There was no ‘new’, but Underworld held court, their fans fuelled by nostalgia.

Orbital holds a similar place in the heart of an old school raver, but the duo has managed to do the unthinkable – retain credibility, release new material and remain one of the best dance acts in the world. I’m chuffed to bits that I got to see them in such a setting.  Thanks Daryl 🙂

2 responses to “Orbital at the Royal Albert Hall, a quick review”

  1. Tom Harle

    I had a similar thing with my first Orbital track, it was on the War Child album that came with no sleeve. It took me ages to track down the name of the band (you had to buy a magazine to get the track listing?!) but it blew my mind as a spotty Pearl Jam fan! Can’t believe I didn’t find out about the Albert Hall show until the night.

    ..And I’m still annoyed with the internet for not looking like it did in Hackers

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