Dr Alex Paterson's last day on Earth
The Orb's Dr Alex Paterson

If you were to die tomorrow, how would you spend your final day on Earth?

Floating up to his own little fluffy cloud this month is The Orb’s Dr. Alex Paterson.

Where would you wake up?

Well, there would be a lot to do in a day; I’d probably be chasing the sun, so I’d wake-up in Japan. I dunno why as there’s not a lot to do in the mornings there other than wandering round buying clothes. Not a great start, perhaps, so I’d wake up on Mount Fuji.

Who would you wake with?

I would wake up with my girlfriend.

How would your final day begin?

I’d look for the mad amusement park on the base of Mount Fuji and take a few rides in there, and then whisk myself off very, very, very quickly on a jet cos it’s gonna be a long day. I’m thinking of getting stuck up in the Himalayas, but then that just gives me another mountain and you’re gonna think I’m a bit of a mountain freak. Where would I go? Not the pyramids! I’d like to get a plane from Japan to Petra in Syria, which is a little city that’s in the desert; it’s quite famous, it’s all made out of sand, like carved out of the desert. While I’m flying I’d like to catch up on the last few books of Philip K. Dick, then I’d come to my flat in London for lunch, say my goodbyes to my dear friends and family, pick up my two children and leave. I’d steal a tank and drive it up to Heathrow. I wouldn’t mind giving my girlfriend one in the middle of Parliament Square whilst shouting out, ‘It’s in the name of art!’ Then I’d nick a Concorde and fly to Arizona whilst having a wet shave and a top massage.

What’s gonna be the sound track to your flight?

I’d be listening to ‘E2-E4’ by Manuel Göttsching, ‘The World Is A Ghetto’ by WAR, and really a lot of reggae: all the Joe Gibbs favourites, a little bit of King Tubby and Lee “Scratch” Perry - but he’d be at the party anyway, trying to get a remix off me: ‘Yeah man, give us a remix now, come on!’ What are you going to eat in Arizona? Strictly vegetarian. I don’t think I’m going to start eating meat again. Salads, a haloumi wrap, maybe Lebanese food... I’d eat it under the stars in the desert and watch the sunset until the stars come up. I won’t be having baked beans on toast, I’ve done that enough.

What would be your greatest regret?

Probably not seeing the pyramids

What would be the last album you’d listen to?

It’d be ‘He Got Game’ by Public Enemy; that two or three times in a row as it’s that good! I suppose the last parting shot would be Mozart’s ‘Requiem’. It’s the song I saw my daughter in with, just as she was born, so it seems like a good idea to go out listening to it. How are you going to die? I’d probably be guided to it by a bright light. I don’t want to go. I’ll just switch off and then it’ll be like a deep sleep... Maybe it’s like that but in reverse, with a big bright light coming at you and then you revert back to your original form, like carbon.

Who would be the last person you kiss?

Obviously my girlfriend. The second to last would be my children.

What would your final words be?

‘Truth be out’ - an old Shakespeare thing.

What song would you like to be played at your funeral?

I suppose being self-indulgent, something by FFWD [Alex’s all-star group with Robert Fripp, Thomas Fehlman and Kris Weston]. It’s one of ours you can’t get a copy of anywhere unless you pick it up second-hand.

What’s it going to say on your gravestone or memorial?

Erm, I’ve no idea… I’ve not mentioned Chelsea once, have I?

Which dead star would welcome you at the Pearly Gates and why?

My father, because I haven’t seen him since I was eight-years-old. Sorry it’s sentimental. If you were resurrected the day after, who or what would you like to come back as? I suppose I’d like to come back as Neil Armstrong, then I would know whether they actually went to the moon, wouldn’t I?


The Orb release their new album, ‘Baghdad Batteries’, on Malicious Damage Records on the 7th September. Read ClashMusic's review of it HERE.

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