After leaving Roger Waters to tour Pink Floyd songs on his own, David Gilmour has entered into an altogether different collaboration – with the Orb. The ambient house act have completed their tenth studio album, and it's chock full of Gilmour's guitar.
Metallic Spheres, due on 4 October, is credited to the Orb "featuring David Gilmour". The 10 songs began with Gilmour alone in the studio, jamming with producer Youth. The Orb's Alex Paterson took these unfinished tracks and manipulated them. Youth's bass and keyboards appear alongside Gilmour's lap steel and electric guitar, described in a press release as, er, "discernible".
The Orb's most recent album, last year's Baghdad Batteries, sank with nary a trace. According to David Gilmour's blog
, the Pink Floyd frontman did not work "with" the Orb – he was just mucking about with Youth, the former bassist in Killing Joke, and Paterson decided to cut and paste this work into an entire LP. Royalties from the album will reportedly go to the legal campaign of Gary McKinnon
, a Glasgow-born hacker who is fighting extradition to the US. Gilmour has previously supported the Free Gary campaign with a cover of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young's song Chicago, an ambient version of which may appear on Metallic Spheres.
In addition to CD, LP and download releases, Metallic Spheres will also be pressed in a "3D60 mix". This is a new "three-dimensional" audio format developed by Youth and two other engineers, and apparently doesn't require special equipment. More information, and samples, can be found here. For those who wish to experience the Orb in real, actual 3D, Paterson will appear next month at the Out of the Ordinary festival in Sussex.
As for Pink Floyd, although there seems little chance of a tour
, Gilmour and Waters reunited for a one-off charity gig last month. Gilmour's wife, Polly Samson, recorded the concert, which you can view here