The Cinematic Orchestra

Previously I have showcased artists that are (or have been) in my top ten most played artists, as recorded by last.fm, those were; The Herbaliser and Roots Manuva. Well, today I present to you The Cinematic Orchestra. Since February 2005 I have listened to them over 300 times on my laptop – so I'd say they're definitely worth a paragpraph or two.

The Cinematic Orchestra are made up of six members; Jason Swinscoe, Patrick Carpenter, Tom Chant, Luke Flowers, John Ellis, and Phil France. Swinscoe is the 'conductor', if you like – the man that makes sure the magic comes together as it should. Carpenter is the DJ and producer, Chant is the sax man, Flowers is the drummer, Ellis is the keyboard dude, and France is the bass player. Essentially, Cinematic Orchestra are a jazz/electronica group, signed to Ninja Tune and have been in existence since 1999.

The Cinematic Orchestra sound is the epitimy of the term 'cinematic'. Their music is so many things, in so many ways – it's funky, soothing, chilling, aggressive, emotional, their records truly provide a journey through music. You're not likely to find a track by them in the chart top 40, but that was and is never their intention, their music is so much more than that. To date they have released four LP's…

  • Motion (1999)
  • Remixes 1998-2000 (2000)
  • Every Day (2002)
  • Man with a Movie Camera (2003)

Taking note of the last LP on that list, Man with a Movie Camera – it was actually a score to the classic 1929 Dziga Vertov Polish film. The story goes that they were originally asked to perform a live score for it at a film festival in Portugal, but it went down so well that they decided to record it. The film was actually a piece of communist propaganda, but for it's time had quite advanced production techniques that such allowed the score to be split into six main sections, and in turn corresponded with six main themes. You have to hear this LP to believe it, it's nothing short of breath-takingly beautiful.

Their live shows are said to be amazing, and over the years the Orchestra have visited countries both far and wide, including more recently; Germany, Japan, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Holland, France, and Switzerland. Their respective appearances tend to sell out quite quickly and the guys have a certain reputation for putting on fantastic live shows, both in concert and at festivals.

Obviously as an Orchestra they don't have a singer as such, but, they have worked with many vocalists that include; Roots Manuva, Niara Scarlett, Fontella Bass, and Ricky Rankin. They've each added something valuable to the tracks they contributed to, and it was a particularly interesting collaboration with Roots Manuva (an emcee) for the track All Things To All Men, I mean naturally Roots Manuva is a pretty diverse emcee at the best of times, but it really did seem to work well – listen for yourself…

Cinematic Orchestra – All Things To All Men
>> download <<
This download is a sample of the music only and must be deleted from your computer within 24 hours of downloading. This download link will expire on 22nd June.

Rumour has it that the guys have finished recording a new album that is due out this month. I'm not sure of the finer details, but no doubt it will be as fantastic as every other Cinematic Orchestra release. I've exhausted the internet trying to find details on the new album, but to no avail. Either it's delayed, or they are just simply keeping their cards very close to their chests. If anyone has any details, please let me know. I'd also be interested to hear from anyone that has seen them live.

Useful links: