LP 268: Various – BBC Space Themes (BBC, 1978)

30 Jul

Side 1
01 The Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra conduced by Carl Böhm – Apollo
02 Dick Mills – Moonbase 3
03 Patrick Michael and His Orchestra – A For Andromeda
04 Frank Chacksfield and His Orchestra – The Sky At Night
05 The London Symphony Orchestra conduced by Aaron Copeland – Apollo Soyuz
06 Frank Weir, His Saxaphone, Chorus and Orchestra – Journey Into Space
07 The Astronauts – Space For Man and The Case of The Ancient Astronauts

Side 2
08 Dudley Simpson Orchestra – Blake’s 7
09 Johnny Keating and His Orchestra – Star Trek
10 The London Symphony Orchestra with The Ambrosian Singers conducted by André Previn – Quatermass
11 Johnny Dankworth Big Band – Tomorrow’s World
12 Delia Derbyshire – Dr. Who

BBC Space Themes is another record that drags me back to my childhood. One of my primary school classmates lent it to me in 1981 so I made a cassette copy on our Philips 3-in-1. It got lots of airplay. I eventually picked up the LP in the mid-1990s – on the same day that I picked up the first In-Flight Entertainment compilation album.

An austere Apollo launches our rocket before Dudley Simpson’s evocative Moonbase 3 (realised by Dick Mills) glides along with a beautiful arrangement. Frank Chackfield’s version of The Sky At Night is immense, an emotional soundscape of wordless wonder. Elsewhere the eerie tones of Journey Into Space usher in the odd and quirky electronics of Peter Howell’s Space For Man And The Case Of The Ancient Astronauts. One of the Radiophonic Workshop’s finest works.

Over on side 2 there are more treats. Blake’s 7 sounds better in this sort of company. I could never warm to the 45 when playing it at home. Star Trek is a revelation, a jazzy creation of sweet grooves from Johnny Keating while the Quatermass theme played by The London Symphony Orchestra is positively epic. This nicely contrasts with the big band arrangement of Tomorrow’s World from another Johnny – this one named Dankworth. We arrive back to earth with the inevitable strains of Dr. Who as realised by Delia Derbyshire.

Enjoy the voyage.

Comments and feedback are welcome.


14 Responses to “LP 268: Various – BBC Space Themes (BBC, 1978)”

  1. nlgbbbblth July 30, 2011 at 12:04 AM #


  2. Lacey August 14, 2011 at 8:48 AM #

    I almost bought this years and years ago at a Scottish Highland games in Southern California. It was a BBC press and imported so, for the time, it was a bit pricey in my opinion. I have always been a big fan of BBC shows so I w2as sorry to have missed it then.

    All things come to those who wait.

  3. muna January 10, 2014 at 2:37 PM #

    hi there! any chance for a re-upload?

    • nlgbbbblth January 10, 2014 at 7:41 PM #

      email sent

      • muna January 10, 2014 at 8:46 PM #

        thank you!

      • Joe Torran March 19, 2015 at 6:29 PM #

        Was the full originally uploaded? I am looking for this

  4. nlgbbbblth March 19, 2015 at 8:10 PM #

    Joe Torran – email sent.

    • RobThom April 5, 2015 at 7:29 AM #

      Could I also have a DL link?

      Thank you.

      • nlgbbbblth April 5, 2015 at 10:20 AM #

        Rob – check your email.

  5. billted April 5, 2015 at 5:49 PM #

    Thank you.

  6. Conrad April 10, 2015 at 4:42 PM #

    Any chance for an email too? Thanks

  7. Fred June 17, 2015 at 2:01 PM #

    Hi! I’m desperately looking for this record. Any chance to have a download link?

    • nlgbbbblth June 17, 2015 at 6:58 PM #

      Fred – check your email.

      • David B February 21, 2016 at 6:38 AM #

        May I also have a link?

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