Anyone familiar with William Orbit's landmark "Strange Cargo" series or his production and co-writing chores on Madonna's Grammy-winning "Ray of Light" (those Microsoft commercials with the grassy hill? Yeah, that's him) will welcome with open arms his first solo release since 2000's "Pieces In A Modern Style." That album spawned the monster dance remix of "Adagio For Strings," vindicating Orbit's 15-year plus effort to get the album of reinterpreted classical pieces released.
But this new project is more reminiscent of the pioneering "Strange Cargo" series, with the opening track "Sea Green" positively echoing "Water From A Vine Leaf" from "Strange Cargo III," which old-time Orbitheads will recall featured deliciously seductive vocals from Beth Orton.
William employs the Sugarbabes and Kenna on vocals for the downtempo groove of "Spiral," which seems destined for crossover success on urban charts and then Mayer returns to lend a hand on another funky title, "Who Owns The Octopus?", featuring nice interplay between the nu soul backbeat, signature percolating synths, processed guitar, and breathy female vox. She's also on "Bubble Universe" (yet another nerdy song title!), a sort of 23rd century lullaby.