Cue The Music

Series V and VI Music Score - by Andrew Ellard

8 October, 2004

Just a small update this time, as Howard Goodall's music pretty much speaks for itself - though there are some sparkling stories in Howard Goodall: Settling the Score, which is set to be included on the Series VI DVD.

Cue The Music

The isolated music cues for Series V and VI are very much a continuation of those on the previous releases. The major difference is how much was, by this time, being composed for specific episodes and scenes. Series I and II especially needed a lot of 'generic' stings and themes that could be used wherever appropriate. By the later series, Howard was arranging his music to the demands of individual episodes.

Thus the cues this time will be organised by episode. From the mysterious Holoship themes and eerie horror of Quarantine to the elegant Legion and genre-embracing Gunmen of the Apocalypse, it's all here - along with another selection of specific and generic cues that were created for the shows and ultimately never used.

Cue The Music

It's been something of a revelation working on this aspect of the DVDs with the team (the tracks themselves are organised by regular show sound expert Jem Whippey). You see how cues were split or re-ordered - how a memorable sting in the episode was originally part of a much longer composition.

I've also discovered one piece of trivia that I'd never noticed before - that one episode of Series V has no original music at all! Aside from Howard's opening and closing themes, the only music in Terrorform was pre-existing - Kryten's CPU playing 'Copacabana', and the pseudo-heroic 'Reach for the Stars', an oft-used piece of library music. (For the record, only original compositions appear in the DVD music cues section.) It's funny how sometimes a show can feel different, but you can't quite put your finger on why.

Cue The Music

Still, a lot of my favourites this time around come from Gunmen. Damn, that was some fine work. The reworking of the Red Dwarf tune as both soaring Western theme and Honky-Tonk piano version is magnificent. And lest we forget, there's a wee guitar moment for the Riviera Kid, too.

Interestingly, the Honky-Tonk tune was missing from the archive when we came to compile the cues, as were the entire run from Out of Time. The former was eventually located on a rushes tape, playing over shots from an abandoned camera while the cast rehearsed; but for the latter we had to go back to the source - Mr Goodall's own personal archive. God bless you, sir!

More DVD Details will follow soon...

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