Vinyl Review: Malcom Lockyer & Bill McGuffie — Dr. Who and The Daleks/Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150 A.D.

Album Review / News / Record Store Day 2016 / Reviews / Vinyl Review / April 11, 2016

Peter Cushing fights the not-so-terrifying Daleks in this heady double set

Silva Screen

As the exhaustive liner notes suggest, this complete two album collection is a dose of pure Dalekmania! Restored from the original mid ’60s tapes, these two soundtracks give you a glimpse into the jazzy orchestral world of early science fiction , a time when dodgy acting and bad makeup could be forgiven by the excitement of seeing a silver technicolor alien (with a plunger for a hand) shoot smoke at humans, swim through the Thames and glide (somewhat) effortlessly across the floor, no strings attached. It was a heady time for sci-fi, and it needed daring music to match.

Dr. Who & The Daleks (1965)

The first record contains Malcolm Lockyer’s score, a very straight-forward piece that gets to the point and stays there without losing momentum. Steeped heavily in jazz and swing, Lockyer uses guitar to accentuate the action scenes and strings to convey stillness or remorse. A marching rhythm is prevalent on most of the tracks, possibly due to the fact that the Daleks are a nazi-like race of aliens out to exterminate the world. The score shines on “Finale and End Titles,” where the whole orchestra and guitar rise to a squelching peak, never letting go until the last note rings out.

Daleks – Invasion Earth 2150 A.D. (1966)

Contrary to Lockyer’s more subdued score, Bill McGuffie’s tracks for Invasion Earth sound like a cross between ’60s teeny bop beach party and espionage film. Swinging drum fills and electric guitar take center stage, while sharp horn hits accent the rhythm and groove. Side C contains the film score, with sound effects from the movie added in for colour, but it’s side D that really gets the ball rolling (or slowly scooting across the floor), featuring the tracks released as singles to the general public. “The Eccentric Dr. Who” is a real blast, containing all the signature melodies from the film, while “Fugue For Thought” is a fun Moog and synth play on the classical fugue form. Side D ends as the collection begins, with a return to the main theme from Dr. Who & The Daleks, this time with effects from the film added in.

Packaging

Drawing from the pulpy nature of early sci-fi, the packaging and artwork dazzles with bright colors and hand drawn appeal. Both discs are a neon yellow, adorned with labels that mirror the movie art aesthetics. The inside of the gatefold contains a wealth of liner notes, both about the films and composers. I especially like the Win A Real Dalek comic book style ad on the back cover, one of the many flourishes that make for an incredibly appealing package. 

Sound Quality

Historically speaking, Silva Screen has always released quality recordings and this is no different. For a ’60s movie soundtrack, the sound is incredibly detailed, thanks in part to modern mastering equipment and technique. The sound literally leaps out of the speakers with little to no distortion or dullness, making the listening experience as exciting as watching the films. No inner groove distortion or sibilance was detected and volume levels were high without being too compressed.


Extras

No digital download or insert was included.

Make Sure To Spin

“The Eccentric Doctor Who,” “Daleks and Robomen” & “TARDIS Effects.”

Peter Cushing fights the not-so-terrifying Daleks in this heady double set Silva Screen As the exhaustive liner notes suggest, this complete two album collection is a dose of pure Dalekmania! Restored from the original mid '60s tapes, these two soundtracks give you a glimpse into the jazzy orchestral world of early science fiction , a time when dodgy acting and bad makeup could be forgiven by the excitement of seeing a silver technicolor alien (with a plunger for a hand) shoot smoke at humans, swim through the Thames and glide (somewhat) effortlessly across the floor, no strings attached. It was a heady time for sci-fi, and it needed daring music to match. Dr. Who & The Daleks (1965) The first record contains Malcolm Lockyer’s score, a very straight-forward piece that gets to the point and stays there without losing momentum. Steeped heavily in jazz and swing, Lockyer uses guitar to accentuate the action scenes and strings to convey stillness or remorse. A marching rhythm is prevalent on most of the tracks, possibly due to the fact that the Daleks are a nazi-like race of aliens out to exterminate the world. The score shines on “Finale and End Titles,” where the whole orchestra and guitar rise to a squelching peak, never letting go until the last note rings out. Daleks - Invasion Earth 2150 A.D. (1966) Contrary to Lockyer’s more subdued score, Bill McGuffie’s tracks for Invasion Earth sound like a cross between '60s teeny bop beach party and espionage film. Swinging drum fills and electric guitar take center stage, while sharp horn hits accent the rhythm and groove. Side C contains the film score, with sound effects from the movie added in for colour, but it’s side D that really gets the ball rolling (or slowly scooting across the floor), featuring the tracks released as singles to the general public. “The Eccentric Dr. Who” is a real blast, containing all the signature melodies from the film, while “Fugue For Thought” is a fun Moog and synth play on the classical fugue form. Side D ends as the collection begins, with a return to the main theme from Dr. Who & The Daleks, this time with effects from the film added in. Packaging Drawing from the pulpy nature of early sci-fi, the packaging and artwork dazzles with bright colors and hand drawn appeal. Both discs are a neon yellow, adorned with labels that mirror the movie art aesthetics. The inside of the gatefold contains a wealth of liner notes, both about the films and composers. I especially like the Win A Real Dalek comic book style ad on the back cover, one of the many flourishes that make for an incredibly appealing package.  [gallery link="file" ids="75609,75610,75611,75613,75612,75614"] Sound Quality Historically speaking, Silva Screen has always released quality recordings and this is no different. For a '60s movie soundtrack, the sound is incredibly detailed, thanks in part to modern mastering equipment and technique. The sound literally leaps out of the speakers with little to no…

Summary

Music - 82%
Packaging - 92%
Sound Quality - 96%
Extras - 60%

83%

Fans of old school sci-fi and surf guitar would be remiss not to give this collection a shot. For Dr. Who fans it's a must buy.

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83

Dr. Who and The Daleks/Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150 A.D.” is limited to 1,000 copies and will be available at your local record store for Record Store Day 2016.




Alan Miller
Alan is a songwriter and record store clerk living just north of Nashville, TN.