Thursday, January 5, 2012


Part 2 -


Track 1 - Introduction
Track 2 - Power Tools
Track 3 - Bird Of Parallax
Track 4 - In A Jazz Style
Track 5 - Purring Interlude
Track 6 - Contrasts Essconic
Track 7 - Lego Builds It
Track 8 - Pompie Ballet
Track 9 - Intertel
Track 10 - Adwick High School No.1
Track 11 - Look At Oramics
Track 12 - Rotolock
Track 13 - Purple Dust
Track 14 - High Speed Flight
Track 15 - Studio Experiment No.1
Track 16 - Four Aspects
Track 17 - Kia Ora
Track 18 - Dr.Faustus Suite
Track 19 - Adwick High School No.2
Track 20 - Tumblewash
Track 21 - Studio Experiment No.1
Track 22 - Snow


Track 1 - Rockets In Ursa Major (Excerpt 1)
Track 2 - Food Preservation
Track 3 - Studio Experiment No.3
Track 4 - Bala
Track 5 - Episode Metallic
Track 6 - Studio Experiment No.4
Track 7 - Adwick High School No.3
Track 8 - Fanfare Of Graphs
Track 9 - Studio Experiment No.5
Track 10 - Brocillande
Track 11 - Mary Had A Little Lamb
Track 12 - Incidental Music For Invasion (Excerpt)
Track 13 - Costain Suite
Track 14 - Rockets In Urs Major (Excerpt 2)
Track 15 - Passacaglia
Track 16 - Missile Away
Track 17 - Pulse Persephone
Track 18 - Adwick High School No.4
Track 19 - Nestea
Track 20 - Rockets In Ursa Major (Excerpt 3)
Track 21 - Conclusion
Track 22 - Studio Jinks

It is probably unfair to compare Daphne Oram to Raymond Scott but it is a good reference point for those who are unfamiliar with her work. Both were pioneering in their use ( and sometimes creation ) of electronic instruments and both worked within the advertising arena for periods of their career. This 2 disc collection of her work presents a confounding mix of musique concrete, orchestral elements, ethnic music and almost every present-day sub genre of electronica. In terms of mood, many of the tracks are incredibly dark and ominous which completely contradicts the image of the smiling woman that greets you on the front cover. What beautiful insanity must have lurked within her mind in order to create such brutal intensity?

As a founding member of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop she was at the forefront of the new and exciting world of electronic music. Oram's greatest inspiration came in 1962 with the creation of her Oramics sound technique ( read more here ) but in terms of popular culture she is probably best know for supplying sound effects for "2001: A Space Odyssey". During the late 1960's and 1970's she continued to work and teach on the subject along with writing the book "An Individual Note Of Music: Sound And Electronics". After two strokes in the 1990's she was forced to retire and sadly passed away in 2003, aged 77.

The other day I read a comment on an electronic music forum that claimed Delia Derbyshire never actually existed and it was nothing but a communist code name. It made me laugh at the time as I thought about the conspiracy theories people come up with but having listened to "Oramics" I think it's entirely possible that Daphne was sent to Earth by aliens on some kind of secret mission. Her creativity was simply other worldly.

I'm posting this album today in part because I wanted to highlight the fact that a 4 LP collection of Oram's work has recently been released, entirely comprised of never heard before music. Ironically it may turn out to be the most important electronic music release of this decade. You can find info about "The Oram Tapes: Volume 1" here. Boomkat are also selling a deluxe 4 LP version of "Oramics" at a reasonable price if you are interested. I might post another one of her records tomorrow.


Ian Van Groove said...

Doctor Who was definitely Delia Derbyshire, not Daphne! Other than that little point, this is one impossible looking but hugely significant electronic pioneer. This is a major share of astronomic & downright sonic proportions! Miss it at your peril people!

Anonymous said...

Daphne Oram is a true unsung heroine of British electronic music. However, I must correct you; it was Delia Derbyshire that realised the Doctor Who theme not Daphne Oram. Interstingly, if you happen to bein London the Science Museum currently has an exhibition about Oramics with daphne's very own Oramics machine on display.


Mr. Craig said...

Yup, I did know Delia and Ron created the Dr. Who theme (almost certain I mentioned it in one of the posts I did on her). However Daphne's wiki page says she "produced" the track so that led me to beleive she played some part in it. So, I was aware of the conflicting information and should have made a point of it but the post must have taken me a good 4 hours to create and I was a bit stuffed by the end of it. I'll probably make an edit today just to cover myself and try to find the source of that wiki misinformation.

Thanks guys.

Mr. Craig said...

Daphne's wiki page is okay, it was another source that gave me that shitty info (or as comedian Brian Posehn calls it "shinfo"). I've admended my post. All is right with the world again, hopefully.

Anonymous said...

thanks about this amazing stuff...i didn't known that lady!

Anonymous said...

Thanks. Lots of great stuff you have here. Enjoying having a look round. J