- Audio CD (24 Jan. 2000)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: BBC
- ASIN: B00003XB2C
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 278,268 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
Doctor Who: Terror of the Zygons and The Seeds of Doom
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Our product to treat is a regular product. There is not the imitation. From Japan by the surface mail because is sent out, take it until arrival as 7-14 day. Thank you for you seeing it.
This album contains not only 30 minutes of music from Geoffrey Burgon's score for the Doctor Who serial Terror of the Zygons, but also 46 minutes from The Seeds of Doom, both of which stared Tom Baker as The Doctor. Terror of the Zygons concerned aliens living beneath Loch Ness, while The Seeds of Doom reworked the classic SF movie The Thing (From Another World).
Burgon's scores employ flute, clarinet, harp, violin, cello, clavichord and percussion, together with electronic processing by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop and numerous imaginative performance techniques. The result is a sequence of stark and weirdly unsettling soundscapes that instantly evoke memories of classic Doctor Who. Beyond the very occasional pastoral moment, melody is far away, making this a very different musical world to Burgon's Brideshead Revisited, yet sharing something in common with his acclaimed Requiem. The album tracks are taken from the composer's own listening copy of the original mono tapes, and while purists may object to the subtle stereo reverb which has been added, the sound is remarkably clear and detailed. The album also features Ron Grainger's familiar opening and closing title music. --Gary S. Dalkin
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Sadly the BBC wiped the master tapes of the incidental music for nearly all of 1960s and 70s Doctor Who, thinking it would be no use to anyone after it had been dubbed onto the program itself - but in this case, the composer had kept some ropey old listening copies that the Beeb made for him. These have been lovingly curated and cleaned up by Radiophonic Workshop archivist MArk Ayres, and apart from the odd bit of hiss here are there, you'd hardly know this music had been salvaged from such materials.
Burgon's music is performed by a small 'chamber ensemble' of instruments (including a flute, a cello, a clarinet, a clavichord...) - despite what you might expect from Doctor Who, it's mostly very acoustic. I'd say it has an elegant simplicity and clarity, with a classy atmospheric spookiness without every being clichéd or hammy, Occasionally instruments have been fed through a ring modulator at the Radiophonic Workshop to give them a wierder tonal edge.
What you have to remember is that this music was never intended to be listened to on its own: it was written for the sole purpose of enhancing the atmosphere and drama of specific scenes in a television programme. As such, many of the cues are quite similar to each other (deliberately, to maintain a sense of coherence) and designed *not* to actively grab your attention, but instead to work away subliminaly in the corner of your ear. So don't expect this CD to entertain you! But if you want to bask in the mood or even study how TV indcidental music achieves its effect, it's fascinating.
One exception is the deranged electronic racket which the baddie in Seeds of Doom plays to his plants in his arboretum - here the music 'breaks the fourth wall' and becomes a part of the narrative ("The music's terrible!!" moans Tom Baker in the scene in question, as his ears are beseiged by the atonal racket! lmao!).
The CD has some informative sleevenotes by both Ayres and Burgon, and also throws in a copy of Delia Derbyshire's famous Dr Who theme tune for good measure.
If I have two small grumbles. FIrstly, that none of Dick Mills radiophonic sound effects for these serials are included (for instance the slurping electronics inside the Zygon spaceship, or the gurgling of the Krynoid pod as it spilts open to unleash a tentacle...). A selection of these would have made a great counterpoint to Burgon's work - but I guess they would have necessitated it being a double CD. A handful of them can be found on other BBC Compilations.
Secondly, this CD was pressed in a fairly limited run in the year 2000, and is long since out of print, and only obtainable on sites like this at exhorbitant prices for secondhand copies. I do with the BBC would get with the times and make this material available on digital stores too. It's not as nice a way to own it, but it's significantly better than not being able to get to hear it at all. It seems such a waste to go to the trouble of releasing discs like this, only to have them deleted within a couple of years and near impossible to find. Mind you, I tracked one down ;) Maybe will you too.
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