Ah, the BBC. Their world news sounds like an apocalyptic rave and their inexplicably long-running, trippy strange “children’s” sci-fi show has one of the greatest pieces of synthesized music ever.

I’m running out of ways to say Delia Derbyshire is one of the most brilliant composers ever to use electricity, so let’s just get straight on to the bit where Coldcut show up and hold a big musical party for the Beeb Radiophonic Workshop and do their own kickass remix of Who’s opening titles and sounds. (Making the classic Doctor Who video feedback seem psychedelic? Not really a challenge. And yet these episodes always wound up with wandering around a rock quarry…)

Coldcut were there, the wonderfully-talented Dick Mills and Mark Ayres… sounds delicious. I’m still waiting for the Derbyshire music release, and I think there’s still more that could be done to document the UK’s electronic history — CDM stands at your aid, ye worthy workshop of sound.

BBC Electric Proms 2008: Coldcut
Via Carter Rosenberg’s tumblr and
vdmx co-creator David Lublin’s Twitter

Because it must be done, let us also consider Orbital’s classic remix (thanks, gwenhwyfaer) – provided it doesn’t make you hide behind the sofa:

  • gwenhwyfaer

    Nice, but I must admit I prefer this version.

  • interim_descriptor

    I miss Orbital.

  • this combines three of my most favoritist things … beats, remixes and Doctor Who.

    Though I'm with gwenhwyfaer, the "last ever Orbital gig at Glasto" version is the most ass-kicking-est version ever.

    even with the false start.

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  • Rob-M

    I expect that the BBC Radiophonic Workshop are probably some of the most influential electronic musicians of all time. As for the Dr Who theme, we musn't forget Ron Grainer who is at least partly responsible for the tune, read the 'story' at:

  • Rob-M: Right, excellent point. Tune by Ron Grainer, electronically "orchestrated" (and, given the available technology, arguably performed!) by Delia.

  • endekks
  • poopoo

    Bill Baileys 60's Belgium Jazz version of Doctor Who


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  • For me this just goes to prove that some things just can't be bettered or improved upon. With everyone talking about how futuristic the original is, why not just play the original. And where was all the radiphonic gear? I saw a a flickr set that had loads of old EMS stuff but everyone seemed more interested in looking at their lap tops.

    I would have had more respect for this if they had combined some live tweaking of synths and tape loops rather than triggering clips from ableton live.

  • I hear you, Simon … but I think you can cover something out of love, even realizing you may not be able to top the original (and indeed, just about impossible to do that…)

  • poopoo

    @simon … old radiophonic gear? Delia's lampshade and tape machine hardly lend themselves to live performance.

  • Well, I'm all for the BBC gang hauling out their EMS's … that'd be great. The older stuff, no, not terribly practical for live performance. 🙂 (and this tune was assembled in, um, whatever the *opposite* of realtime is … "long time"?)

  • @poo poo…. maybe but they could certainly have used some tape machines and tone generators and combined these with the modern technology.

    I just thought it was funny when I was looking through the flicker set of them rehearsing that no-one even touched any of the EMS gear. It was almost like they had it there as props. Still, maybe the photographer turned up after they had been tweaking.

    OK I'm going to stop being an old misery now!

  • please listen my elektro version of Doctor Who ( Kocleo Unofficial remix )..and tell me what do you think!