(Planet Me)
Monday, October 29, 2012
 
ORBITAL. "Pusher"

Who would've expected this? Less than six months after the comeback "Wonky", and Orbital push out their fourth soundtrack with the score to a remake of Nicolas Refn's "Pusher" : this time transposed to Cockneyland, and remade by someone else, the trailers make it look like some kind of anameic Londonised version of someone else's vision, in much the same fashion as any Scandanavian crime thriller with jumpers is inevitably remade with more money in English a few years later.

Not that this is as bad as that, though it is not the best thing that Orbital have ever done : it certainly doesn't blend itself to home listening - track 3 "Driving And Clubbing" is a 90 second remix of the worst song from "Wonky", ends abruptly mid-beat, and then goes straight into a leisurely atmospheric piece of general formlessness called "Turkish Tension" that contains nothing but general, unstructured throbs. Occasionally, new, and gloriously structured, layered, dense material that builds and ebbs and flows with the traditional Orbital character, hoves into view, such as "Cutting And Doing", And then its back to leisurely textures without a hint of melody that gently undulate for three minutes on one tedious chord sequence : the type of music you listen to to make hanging up the washing dramatic and spooky. And then its the pacing "VVIP" and "Cab To Danakas" that pounds and throbs for 20 seconds, then ceases. Only "Go With The Flow" is the nearest thing to classic Orbital, a sprawling, epic 12 minute theme that would easily sit at the head of any of their 'proper' studio albums.

Whereas a traditional Orbital record has a shape, a bend, a flow, and travels on a long musicial journey of motifs and rhythms akin to an extended, futuristic classical piece, this is a stuttering, define work that never stretches its wings, never develops its potential, never goes as far as it should, with strong musical pieces that are cut short or weak ones that are cut formlessly long, designed to accompany moving images and not for home listening.


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