THE BOX OF DELIGHTS.

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Released in 1984 THE BOX OF DELIGHTS was a six episode BBC TV series, which had an interesting score by composer Roger Limb. The soundtrack was released in 2018 on CD and in digital format by Silva Screen. I must admit not being that impressed with the score when I watched the series, well nearly all of it. I found the production to be a little lack lustre in the effects department, but this was 1984 before the FX business in TV really came into its own remember. The acting too was for me a little hammy. On revisiting the score, I was pleasantly surprised, it is a work that is inventive and also richly thematic for a score that is performed by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Not that this ensemble is anything but polished and professional, and responsible for being a large part of the music that was created for the DR WHO series as composed by the likes of Ron Grainer, Roger Limb, Mark Ayres and others. I am certain if it were not for the contributions of the Radio phonic workshop the Cybermen and the Daleks would have not been so chilling and frightening.

Roger_Limb
ROGER LIMB.

The sound that they create and purvey is otherworldly and also compelling and this can be said for the music from THE BOX OF DELIGHTS. I am certain however that the score is not totally electronic and is a mixture of both synthetic and conventional, the latter being just a small percentage of the total musical line up, at times one can clearly hear that the music is electronic, but there are other occasions when it is hard to define or differentiate between synthetic and symphonic. Overall when listening to the soundtrack away from the series it is wonderfully melodic in places and also contains a dark and slightly ominous sound that is filled with drama and has to it a tense but at the same time lilting quality. The composer manages to create melodious and haunting passages that linger in ones head and fuses these with the more atonal parts of the score. There is a sinister persona surrounding many of the cues, but also there is a lighter and more relaxed sound that seems to float in and out the proceedings. I have to admit that I was wrong about this score and after hearing again some thirty five years later I can now fully appreciate the qualities is holds.

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