OTO partners with electro band Faithless for sleep remix of Insomnia track

The iconic Nineties dance tune has been reimagined to aid sleep


By Lauren Heath-Jones

18 April 2022

CBD lifestyle and skincare brand OTO CBD has partnered with British electronic band Faithless to re-release its iconic dance hit Insomnia as a 27-minute sleep-inducing track. 

Available on SoundCloud, the song has been designed to lull listeners into a deep, restorative sleep and was informed by OTO’s own research into the UK’s sleep habits and sleep science, with sleep-behaviour expert James Wilson, AKA the Sleep Geek, invited to collaborate on the project. 

Insomnia: Blissful Sleep Remix features a slower tempo of 100 beats per minute, aligning with normal resting heart rate for sleep in adults, to help induce sleep, as well as ASMR via an updated reprise of the lyrics “I can’t get no sleep”.

Insomnia: Blissful Sleep Remix is designed to be listened to after using OTO's Sleep Drops

A 15-musician orchestra, including strings, woodwind and percussion sections, were used to recreate the song’s iconic riff, mimicking a rhythmic pulse similar to isochronic tones, which are embedded in music to sync brain waves to their frequency.

The remix was produced by Faithless keyboardist Sister Bliss – real name Ayalah Bentovim – and music producer and multi-instrumentalist Rollo Armstrong, while mastering was provided by Abbey Road engineer Christian Wright. It marks the first time the song has been rewritten since its original 1995 release. 

“It’s hard to believe we produced Insomnia 27 years ago in a garden shed. Being in there all day and the DJing at night was like having permanent jet lag, so I came up with the title Insomnia because I literally couldn’t sleep,” said Sister Bliss. 

Faithless keyboardist Sister Bliss produced the track

“Once released, the track became an anthem for a generation of late-night clubbers who were also getting no sleep. With that legacy in mind, the opportunity to collaborate with OTO on the creation of a Sleep Remix was one I couldn’t turn down. I can’t wait to get the track out there and help a nation of bad sleepers finally get the rest they’re craving,” she added. 

Commenting on the track, Wilson said: “Music can help calm the mind by creating a state of relaxation. It’s also something that people have a strong emotional connection to, so if there is a level of familiarity in the music to an earlier period in your life, this adds to that feeling of safety that can help us fall asleep.

“The existing research into sleep and sound shows that music stimulates chemicals in the brain that improve our propensity for a good night’s sleep and help us to relax.”

European Spa spoke to OTO brand founder Gemma Colao to find out more:

The track features a 15-musician orchestra recreating the iconic Insomnia riff

What inspired the collaboration with Faithless?

We know that the UK is a nation of bad sleepers, but we didn’t know quite how bad it was. Through our research, we found out that over half of people in the UK consider themselves bad sleepers, and 82% suffer from insomnia. We also know that music is one of the ways people can get to sleep, yet music in its current form isn’t designed for sleep. So, to help people actually get some sleep, OTO set out to create a track that would do just that. 

How did the collaboration come about? 

OTO is grounded in science, so it was important to understand the science behind how sound can help you sleep. Suddenly tempos, frequencies, beats and tones became very important – so we turned to James Wilson, AKA the Sleep Geek, for his expertise.

Part of our research found that it takes 27 minutes for the average person to drop off to sleep. Working with the phenomenal Sister Bliss from Faithless, and with the help of James, we’ve created a 27-minute sleep edit of Insomnia, that runs at a reduced tempo of 100 beats per minute – to align with the resting heartbeat to help you drop off to sleep. 

 We hope that Insomnia: Blissful Sleep Remix, will help our nation of bad sleepers and insomniacs finally get some sleep. Along with our Sleep Drops, we’ve created a winning formula for a restful night’s sleep. 

“OTO is grounded in science, so it was important to understand the science behind how sound can help you sleep.”

Gemma Colao

Founder, OTO CBD

Why Faithless? Could you elaborate on the song choice?

We wanted to help our nation of insomniacs, harnessing the power of music and CBD – and the first track that comes to mind is, of course, Insomnia by Faithless. Rewriting the dance anthem that kept a generation up all night in the Nineties, myself included, into a 27-minute sleep track to now help them sleep, not to mention the fact that Faithless first released Insomnia 27 years ago – it was the obvious choice! 

Are there any plans for a future collaboration with Faithless or other artists? 

We thought we had our heads in the clouds, to think OTO could work with such an iconic British band. But I’m absolutely over the moon to say we managed to make that dream come true. We’ve loved exploring the synergies between CBD and sound, and how they can drastically improve sleep when used together, and would love to continue raising awareness of its benefits. So watch this space! 

Will the song be used in OTO treatments at any of your partner spas, such as Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park? 

At OTO, we always look to create the ultimate relaxation experience for each of our treatments – so incorporating the track is something we’d definitely consider as we continue innovating our spa offering. We are thrilled at the recent support from our partners surrounding the launch of our OTO CBD Facial and our new Cleansing Jam and look forward to sharing news of our latest treatments in the coming months.

The track was informed by sleep science with sleep expert James Wilson collaboration on the project

Can you tell us about the founding of OTO? 

My personal journey with CBD started whilst living in San Francisco and working in the fast-paced, fashion industry. I’d always suffered from anxiety, which in turn really affected my sleep. One glorious day, someone recommended CBD and quite honestly, I’ve never looked back. Anything that reduces anxiety and changes your sleep changes your life and I wanted to help others experience these benefits in a meaningful way.  

That’s why I started OTO, to help people discover the power of CBD. OTO literally means ‘sound’ in Japanese, and sound has always played a fundamental role within our brand. There is a lot of noise in the world today, we want to help people cut through it and find their space. 

What are your plans for the brand going forward?  

We were thrilled to become the first premium CBD and wellness line to secure validation from the FSA earlier this month and are enthusiastic about the opportunities it will bring to the CBD sector as a whole. We’re excited to move forward with our pioneering product range, encouraging more and more people to turn to our thoughtful and effective products and reap the benefits of our optimum strength CBD guarantee.

Ultimately, we want to continue breaking down barriers and provide standout experiences for consumers; re-imagining spa treatments through sound and CBD with fully immersive and transformative experiences.   

 Since entering the market in 2019, OTO has developed over 35 products from Spa treatments to Sleep Drops, Seltzers, Massage Oil and Pillow Mist to CBD Cocktail Bitters, and has recently expanded into the US and Asian markets.

Be well rested...

Listen to the Insomnia: Blissful Sleep Remix here

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