Dr Who & The Daleks CD review

The soundtrack CD to the two Doctor Who movies from the 1960s has pretty much made Cameron's day...

In a month where Doctor Who Magazine published the stone cold fact that Peter Cushing’s Doctor Who stories were more popular than Colin Baker’s (cue gasps), Silva Screen have released the soundtrack to the two Dalek movies of the Sixties. And remember, those bad boys were in colour! So close you can feel their heat, so close you can, now, hear their ferocity. Well, nearly.

Collected on one CD (or download, digital fans!) for the first time are soundtrack selections from Dr. Who & The Daleks and Daleks’ Invasion Earth: 2150AD – a heady mix of shimmering Sixties sci-fi dreamery and jazz licks with more brass stabs than a school band in South London.

Actually, the tracks from the first film are more thoughtful and more evocative of the alien world that The Doctor and his chums found themselves on. The strings waver between solid movie fare to spacey melodies tinged with other-wordly lead guitar – as displayed so neatly in the Opening Titles and the theme returns, solidifying the mesmeric tune. And perfectly pitched from the orchestra. Daleks’ Invasion Earth: 2150AD, however, is a much more rhythmic and noisy affair. The piano is prominent throughout; placing the pieces firmly in their decade (having said that, the tracks sound like they could have come from the 50s). Ironic considering the date the film is set in.

The sequel’s sounds aren’t quite as sensitive or as engaging (or as memorable for that matter) and are much more jokey in tone. Granted, though, the sequel is a bit more light-hearted in tone (thanks to the legend, Bernard Cribbins) so it’s no real surprise that the soundtrack should convey this.

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Also included in this collection are three ‘singles’ (ah, those were the days when you could purchase a Doctor Who single) and special praise must be given to the track, The Eccentric Doctor Who. Without actually containing any of the melody from the television show, this theme is like the big film version itself – brassy, colourful and Sixties. One can almost imagine Batman and Robin doing their bat-dance to it. Bond fans may raise a laconic Moore-ish eyebrow when they hear a very familiar guitar sound in Daleks And Thals – (ah, those were the days when you could steal a tune).

Not just content with treating us to the music of the films, Silva Screen also treat the listener to some Bonus Tracks, namely sound effects from the TARDIS and Dalek City. Not something you’ll come back to a lot but pretty fascinating nonetheless.

I should add, however, one bizarre fact. If you look closely at the cover (and I did!), you may notice ‘poster creases’ in the image for Dr Who & The Daleks. Did the producers of this CD simply get an old poster and then scan it? They should have given me a call. I have a beautiful (and huge!) poster for it uncreased and framed. But perhaps that’s how this release should be realised – a bit grubby, childlike, but hugely entertaining. And better than Colin Baker, apparently.

5 stars

Dr. Who And The Daleks is out now.

Rating:

5 out of 5