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Soundtrack Review

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The Changes
Original Television Soundtrack (1975)


Composer: Paddy Kingsland
Performed by: BBC Radiophonic Workshop
Label: Silva Screen Records
RRP: £13.99
SILED1540 (download), SILLP1540 (vinyl)
Release Date: 20 April 2018

Silva Screen Records bring us the first ever release of Paddy Kingsland and BBC Radiophonic Workshop's electronic score to seminal Children's BBC Sci-Fi TV series. Adapted from Peter Dickinson’s book trilogy, The Changes was first broadcast by the BBC in 1975. One of the first BBC’s post-apocalyptic TV series, The Changes deals with big themes - racism, sexism, green issues, violence and politics whilst depicting the breakdown of society...

The harrowing and thought provoking 10 part series was accompanied by music from electronic pioneer Paddy Kingsland. The series was perfectly suited to Kingsland’s innovative electronic style and he wrote and recorded the score while working at the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Kingsland used an early synthesiser, the EMS Synthi 100 (dubbed the “Delaware”), to great effect for the howling electronic sound that heralds the changes. He overlaid the electronic sound with live instruments including sitar, percussion, tabla, flute and horns to create a soundtrack which is indicative of exactly how the BBC Radiophonic Workshop’s early output.

Kingsland went on to write the music for (amongst others) The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Radio and TV series), Doctor Who and Around the World in 80 Days, as well as composing for the KPM music library, who issued eight albums of his work. An LP of his Radiophonic Workshop output, The Fourth Dimension, was released by BBC Records in 1973.

If you're a fan of The Radiophonic Workshop's output, then you'll relish the opportunity to own the music from this '70s TV series. While I'm not a huge fan, you really have to put it into context. It sounds incredibly dated, but no doubt it was cutting edge for its time.

This release is only going to appeal to a small audience, and for them this is a wonderful opportunity to own something that they probably thought would never be available.

Personally it wasn't my thing, but I can appreciate Kingsland's vision for the show, and for the time period this is a rare novelty that will bring back vivid memories for some.


Darren Rea

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