Doctor Who, Volume 1: The Early Years 1963-1969The second title in the BBC’s series of remastered sound effects and music compilations is impressive in its scope, even though it leans much more heavily in the direction of effects than it does music.

The musical selections on Early Years are limited primarily to the various minor revamps of the ubiquitous Doctor Who theme, as well as a handful of fleeting cues from several other episodes – many of which, surprisingly, are considered “lost” shows, their videotape masters having disappeared from the BBC’s archives. The sound effects accompanying the show’s first-ever regeneration – in which the role of the Doctor is handed to a new actor by the incumbent Doctor in a metamorphosis sequence – is among the biggest of these surprises (and makes me pine even more for BBC Video’s upcoming home video release of The Tenth Planet, the four-parter from which those effects originate, even if its all-important fourth episode will basically by a slide show on tape).

Perhaps the coolest piece of music is “Time In Advance” by BBC Radiophonic Workshop veteran John Baker. This cue, which actually originated with another show but was tracked as background source music in at least two Doctor Who episodes, is heard in two forms: its original ethereal form, and an unbelievable combination of the original cue and a light jazzy piano accompaniment overdubbed. The latter of these is gorgeous even by modern standards, and makes me want to hear more. It’s tragically brief.

As for the sound effects, many of the sounds heard here did not appear on the excellent 1993 30 Years At The Radiophonic Workshop compilation – such as the distinctive “Dalek Control Room” effects which were used in nearly every Dalek-related adventure from 1963 to 1988 – making this one a worthwhile investment for vintage FX buffs.

Given the CD’s heavy emphasis on effects, I can recommend this safely for rabid Doctor Who enthusiasts…but what about casual fans? Unless you’re that intrigued by the theme arrangements and various incidental music snippets I’ve discussed here, I’d pass on it, were I you. But for Doctor Who completists, this is a promising preview of how the Beeb plans on handling future music releases related to the Time Lord’s twenty-seven years on television.

Order this CD

  1. Music: Doctor Who (original theme) (2:21)
  2. TARDIS exterior hum and door (0:23)
  3. Entry into the TARDIS (0:40)
  4. TARDIS original takeoff sequence (1:47)
  5. Music: Doctor Who (original title music) (2:09)
  6. TARDIS takeoff (1:23)
  7. Skaro: petrified forest atmosphere (1:46)
  8. TARDIS computer (1:08)
  9. Dalek city corridor (1:01)
  10. Dalek control room (0:26)
  11. Capsule oscillation (0:19)
  12. Explosion; TARDIS stops (1:10)
  13. Sleeping Machine (0:52)
  14. Sensorite speech background (1:10)
  15. Dalek spaceship lands (0:16)
  16. TARDIS lands (0:11)
  17. Chumbley constant run (0:27)
  18. Chumbley at rest (0:28)
  19. Chumbley sends message (0:07)
  20. Chumbley dome (0:19)
  21. Chumbley dies (0:11)
  22. Activity on Dalek ship control panel (0:46)
  23. Energy escapes (0:22)
  24. Machinery in TARDIS goes wild: regeneration (1:03)
  25. Regeneration runs down (0:09)
  26. The Doctor’s transitional trauma (0:52)
  27. Music: The Fish People (0:37)
  28. Heartbeat Chase (1:57)
  29. Music: Chromophone Band (1:56)
  30. Controller chimes (0:10)
  31. Music: Time In Advance (3:19)
  32. Propaganda sleep machine (1:08)
  33. Music: Doctor Who new opening theme, 1967 (0:51)
  34. Sting & web / cobweb pulsates (2:04)
  35. 4 stings (0:18)
  36. Music: Mr. Oak and Mr. Quill (0:39)
  37. Lead-in to Cyber Planner (0:14)
  38. Cyber Planner background (0:37)
  39. Music: Cyberman stab and music (1:32)
  40. Rocket stab (0:08)
  41. Birth of Cybermats (0:44)
  42. Cybermats attracted to Wheel (0:39)
  43. Rocket in space (1:49)
  44. Music: Interior rocket (suspense music) (1:55)
  45. Music: Servo Robot music (1:28)
  46. Wheel stab (0:14)
  47. Cosmos atmosphere (1:08)
  48. Music: Alien ship music (1:00)
  49. Jarvis in a dream state (0:47)
  50. Floating through space (1:14)
  51. 2 stabs (0:11)
  52. TARDIS (new landing) (0:18)
  53. Galaxy atmosphere (1:04)
  54. Tension builder (A) (0:45)
  55. Tension builder (B) (0:40)
  56. Tension builder (C) (1:06)
  57. Low sting (0:10)
  58. TARDIS: extra power unit plugged in (1:53)
  59. Music: Zoe’s Theme (1:19)
  60. White void (1:16)
  61. Music: Time In Advance (2:48)
  62. Cyberman brought to life (1:12)
  63. Cyber invasion (2:11)
  64. The learning hall (2:40)
  65. Entry into the machine (1:33)
  66. Sting (0:19)
  67. Music: Machine and City Theme (1:49)
  68. Music: Kroton Theme (2:13)
  69. TARDIS land (0:25)
  70. Alien control centre (0:27)
  71. Time zone atmosphere (0:40)
  72. Dimensional control (0:49)
  73. War Lord arrival (0:16)
  74. Silver box: the Doctor calls for help (1:02)
  75. Time Lord Court atmosphere (1:18)
  76. Music: Doctor Who closing titles (0:41)

Released by: BBC Music
Release date: 2000
Total running time: 78:23