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41 of 41 people found the following review helpful
Doctor Who - The 50th Anniversary Collection is a four CD set comprising some of the best music and effects from the complete run of the series. Although some of the material has been released before, on the Doctor Who at the Radiophonic Workshop releases for example, since those CDs are now deleted and command high prices, this is a cost effective way to get a good overview of the programme's different musical styles over the last six decades.

Disc One covers the first three Doctors, from 1963 - 1974. The first pleasing thing to note is that several pieces of stock music have been included, so we have "Three Guitars Mood" (the Shadows-like instrumental heard on Susan's radio in the first episode) and "Space Adventure Part 2" (used on the early Cyberman stories) amongst others.

There's not a great of deal of original music from this era that still exists (sadly most of the tapes would have been wiped or destroyed immediately after the music was overlaid onto the programme) but the little that we do have is still of great interest - Tristram Cary's haunting electronic soundscape for the first Dalek story and Don Harper's Bond-like score from The Invasion are highlights from the 1960's whilst Dudley Simpsons early 1970's electronic output is represented with The Mind of Evil and The Claws of Axos.

Another highlight of disc one is a five minute suite from The Sea Devils (Malcolm Clarke's score for the 1972 story). This music has long divided opinion, some rate it as not only a great Doctor Who score but also as a fine piece of experimental electronic music, whilst others regard it as just discordant noise. I love it, but it can be a bit much to listen to it all in one sitting, so these edited highlights (originally released on the 1983 album Doctor Who - The Music) are a good way of sampling the best bits.

Also included on the first CD are plenty of sound effects, which are nice to have but probably not the sort of things that will get replayed very often. There's only so many times you can listen to Chumbley (Constant Run) and Chumbley at rest, for example.

The most eye-catching things on Disc Two are two Tom Baker-era Dudley Simpson suites. I wasn't aware that any Simpson clean soundtracks from this era existed, so a six minute suite from The Android Invasion and five minutes of music from The Invasion of Time were both highlights for me.

The second half of Disc Two spans 1980 - 1984. From 1980 onwards, clean soundtracks exist for virtually every episode so there's an embarrassment of riches to chose from. The amount of material that could be included does mean there's not room for everything, so one of the best scores of this era (The Leisure Hive) is represented by just one track and Jonathan Gibbs' excellent score for The Kings Demons isn't included at all. But there's still some very good material here, and hopefully the complete scores for these stories will surface on their own releases in due course.

Disc Three concludes the original run of the series from 1984 - 1989 as well including tracks from the 1996 TV movie. Given my disappointment that Jonathan Gibbs' score for The Kings Demons didn't make the cut it's good to see that one of his other scores - The Mark of the Rani - has made it, and this, along with Peter Howell's strident music from The Two Doctors are highlights of the third disc. And as mentioned, excerpts from the TV movie score by John Debney are included, so a tip of the hat to Silva Screen for making the effort to licence this.

Disc Four brings the story up to date with a selection of Murray Gold's music from the 21st century incarnation of the programme. It's a good sampler of Gold's music - although it's more slanted towards recent series - with only one track from each of the 2005 and 2006 series for example.

Given there's only four discs (and maybe devoting one to Gold was a little generous, though understandable given the profile of the series at present) there's not room to include everything that deserves to be here but it's still a really good snapshot of the programme's music and sound effects. There were many reasons why Doctor Who was and continues to be the success it is, and a major part is due to the music. From Tristram Cary to Dudley Simpson to the BBC Radiophonic Workshop and onto Murray Gold (and of course, many others) this CD is a fine celebration of their work.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 28 December 2013
I got this as a Christmas present and I really looked forward to uploading it to my Ipod and listening to it! It is a fantastic soundtrack album featuring classic music and sound effects as well as music from the new series. It is so hard to pick out my favourites from the album as there are so many! I really loved the Remembrance of the Daleks Suite and the Space Adventure music - which I always associate with Tomb of the Cybermen when all the Cybermen emerge from their tombs but actually first appeared in The Tenth Planet. I also have a real soft spot for Here's to the Future from the 7th Doctor Story Delta and the Bannermen. Music from the Invasion was great and I also really liked the It' the End...but the moment has been prepared for music for the 4th Doctor's regeneration into the 5th.
I was slightly disappointed that the music from City of Death was not included on the album as that music is definitely one of the best ever in classic Who. It's absence doesn't stop me from giving five stars though. Because what I did was to find the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Prom 2013 on Youtube, download it, and then cut out the City of Death section of music from the Classic Suite, which is about 44 minutes into the prom and then add it to the album in my itunes.

This is still very much a collection worth getting if you are a fan of great music - don't even have to be a Doctor Who fan either - although it does help considerably! :)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 30 March 2014
This special collection of music and sound effects covers all the TV Doctors spanning 50 years. While the first CD for the early years is a bit short on actual music, you get sound effects to help boost the contents, it still manages to capture the spirit of those early episodes. In fact, it's quite surprising how much of the music triggers the memory. By the time we get to the late Tom Baker era, I can remember the visuals as the "suites" for episodes such as Logopolis and The Caves of Androzani for Peter Davison play out.

The full versions of the theme tune are also featured for most of the Doctors and it's the first time I've ever heard the full length theme for The Trial of a Time Lord and McCoy series. The modern era though is only represented by the Eccleston/Tennant short version, the series 4 Tennant and both Matt Smith versions are missing, which is a shame. All in all this is a great collection for a fan even if like me you have the contents of disc 4 on the various OST albums for the new series.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 3 February 2014
When I first heard of this CD set, even though I had the soundtracks for series 1-7 I just knew I had to have this in my collection and I'm so glad that I do because each of the 4 discs included in this set contained some brilliant pieces from the original run of the 1963-1989 series and TV Movie (Discs 1-3) as well as a what I like to call a greatest hits selection from the 2005-2013 series (Disc 4)!!

My favourite pieces are
"Death to the Daleks",
"Revenge of the Cybermen",
"Remembrance of the Daleks",
"This is Gallifrey: Our Childhood, Our Home",
"Vale Decem"
Together or Not At All - The Song of Amy And Rory
"The Long Song"

All in all, a great selection of music from great soundtrack artists and well worth adding to my Doctor Who Soundtrack collection!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 12 March 2014
Lovely collection of sounds and music from 50 years of Doctor Who. The first CD containing quite a lot more sounds than music can appear deceiving to some but will delight others.
More details on the music would have been lovely too, but this album is a most for everyone loving the classic music and feels of the classic Who. The last CD have some of the favorites from the new series but also lacks novelty if you already purchase the music of the 9th, 10th and 11th doctor.

A great introduction for anyone who would like to purchase their first music of Doctor Who tough.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 3 January 2014
... of which I am happily one.

I feel it says something that my only disappointment with this as-comprehensive-as-it-could-be (with 50 years to cover!), multiple-disc set taken from 11 Doctors' eras is that some previously released tracks (I had Doctor Who: The Music I & II on vinyl in the 80s) have had to be cut. There's so much here, but how could it ever be enough?

From selection to editing, it's all been expertly done – as one would expect from maestro Mark Ayres, who has remastered everything to a modern standard of clarity that is frankly astonishing. But take, for example, one highlight: The Five Doctors Suite – it is still wonderful, being among the inclusions that transcends the programme for which it was composed (and it went down well in The Royal Albert Hall last year, remember), but here it is noticeably truncated if you're familiar with the earlier release (find that on YouTube).

In terms of style, the breadth of music presented across 4 CDs is, naturally after 5 decades, pretty staggering. It ranges from stock tracks much reused for the monochrome menace of the Cybermen and Yeti, and so-60s musique concrète, via 70s noodlings from the likes of The London Saxophone Quartet (gotta love the Death to the Daleks Suite!) to the 80s synth explosion, with all the pluses and minuses of that genre... and then on to the full orchestral treatment the show has enjoyed since its revival. There is also a smattering of 'special sounds' from the BBC Radiophonic Workshop's sound engineers, Brian Hodgson and Dick Mills; geniuses both. (And quite right too, since the RW's musical and FX work was so dovetailed throughout the programme's original run.)

When it comes to individual tracks, I think it unlikely some of the inclusions will enjoy multiple plays. But for sheer curiosity value and nostalgia, the presence of the likes of Capsule Oscillation (Dalek Destructor Fuse… ) and The Planet Karn is surely justified! And when it comes to pure music, it's obviously a matter of taste but I do wonder how the same era could produce the irredeemably awful Mawdryn Undead Suite just one year after the sublime March of the Cybermen (from Earthshock), which for my money is worthy of contemporary popular artists such as Jean Michel Jarre or even Brian Eno. For every, er, acquired taste (Warriors of the Deep is essentially a composition for fire alarm) there are irrefutable masterpieces, such as Nyssa's Theme (from The Keeper of Traken) and The Ambush (from The Daleks, the best part of 20 years before), and astonishingly evocative work such as the 70s Master's Theme and Hypnosis Music, and – how could I not mention? – The Sea Devils Suite (hear it to believe it!).

So in conclusion, you must have this set in your music collection if the Time Lord's adventures have ever meant anything to you beyond the spoken and the visual. I haven't touched on the final disc, which is devoted to Murray Gold's sterling work since 2005's relaunch, but then lots of CDs are otherwise available – nor have I mentioned that there are 6 tracks from 1996's TV Movie, proving how it set down a template for Doctor Who's revival musically, as in so many other ways...

But that's the thing about this collection – as with its source, Doctor Who itself – after 50 years, there's just so much to enjoy.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 21 December 2013
This four disc set is, on the whole, an excellent collection of Doctor Who music. The first disc covers 1963-1974, the second disc 1974-1984, the third disc 1984-1989 and the 1996 TV movie and disc four the new series.

Highlights from the sixties include the original theme music, the sound effect for the Tardis engines and some music from 'The Invasion'. I have always had a soft spot for 'The Ballad of the Last Chance Saloon' from 'The Gunfighters' so I was very pleased by the inclusion of that.

From the seventies there's some good music from 'The Mind of Evil' as well as some memorable music by Geoffrey Burgon for 'Terror of the Zygons' and 'The Seeds of Doom'. Carey Blyton's music from 'Death to the Daleks' and 'Revenge of the Cybermen' is here, his music is not popular among Doctor Who fans but while the music from 'Death' is bad I actually like his score for 'Revenge'.

The 1980-1985 'Radiophonic' era is well represented, with some great music from 'The Leisure Hive', 'Logopolis', 'Castrovalva', 'Earthshock', 'The Five Doctors', 'The Caves of Androzani', 'The Mark of the Rani', 'The Two Doctors' and 'Revelation of the Daleks' being the highlights.

From the last four series of the classic series the highlights are music form 'Remembrance of the Daleks', 'The Greatest Show in the Galaxy', 'The Curse of Fenric' and Dominic Glynn's outstanding score for 'Survival'.

Sadly there is none of Dudley Simpson's music from 'The Talons of Weng-Chiang', 'The Ribos Operation' and 'City of Death', this is a shame because I feel that his scores for these stories showcase him at his best. There is also no music from 'State of Decay', 'Enlightenment' or 'Mindwarp', which all had great incidental music. In some cases this is because there were no tapes available from these stories.

Highlights of the new series music for me were 'This is Gallifrey: Our Childhood, Our Home' and the superb 'I am the Doctor'. Strangely while there are complete versions of most of the arrangements of the theme tune used in the classic series there are no complete versions of any of the themes used in the new series, there is just the 42 second opening theme from 2005.

Despite a few insignificant niggles this is a great collection and a fine celebration of fifty years of Doctor Who music.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 16 February 2014
A well-chosen and representation selection of Doctor Who's many soundtrack styles over the years, from the earliest Radiophonic Workshop wizardry to the orchestral verve of Murray Gold. Many good memories were triggered by listening to this album, which includes elements from episodes that no longer exist. It must have been very difficult to distill this down to just four disks, but the sheer variety of styles shows how the programme is always changing. An excellent tribute to the show in its anniversary year.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 24 March 2014
A very good selection from the entire 50 years of the tv programme and with some rare tracks including the full Sylvester McCoy version of the opening theme and a suite from the Paul McGann tv movie. A very good selection of 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th Doctors especially, although whilst the unavailability of Dudley Simpson tapes means that we don't have the classic 'City of Death' themes we have got a suite from the interesting 'Invasion of Time' - including the exciting arrival of the Sontarans on Gallifrey.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 27 April 2014
2013 was a year full of Doctor Who on the TV- and in the shops.
This CD is excellent review of all things musically who and was excellent value.
As a new who fan really enjoying listening to the 9/10/11 CD.

Only point off would be does not have the "Song for Ten" from David Tennant's regeneration. Don't think can get the version featured in the Christmas Invasion anywhere.

Have listened to this much more than anticpiated.
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