BBC Radiophonic Workshop
Through A Glass Darkly (Peter Howell) (2020 reissue)
music on vinyl
Peter Howell joined the BBC Radiophonic Workshop in 1974, coming from a career in various psychedelic folk bands, which saw him record five albums with fellow musician John Ferdinando.
He composed his first Doctor Who output in ’75 in the form of some incidental music for “Revenge of the Cybermen” and special sound for “Planet of Evil”. In 1980, he was asked by the programme’s then new producer, John Nathan-Turner, to update the iconic Doctor Who theme. The new arrangement appeared on that year’s “The Leisure Hive”, continuing to be used through Tom Baker’s remaining series as the Doctor and throughout Peter Davison’s. It was replaced during Colin Baker’s tenure in 1986 with a new version by Dominic Glynn. “Through A Glass Darkly” was released in 1978 as a standalone studio album by Howell in collaboration with the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. The six original instrumental compositions (one of which is 19 minutes long) flaunt a prog rock influence as well as the distinctive electronic sound of the RWS. “The Astronauts” (track 5, side 2) appeared again as a B side to the 1980 single release of his version of the Doctor Who theme.