Vinyl Soundtracks: Pre-buy 26Jan2015
We are delighted to announce the upcoming release of some very special soundtracks on vinyl. The Prisoner and Gideon’s Way will be getting the Network treatment and both are available to pre-buy exclusively from networkonair right now! There are a very limited number of the 12″ vinyl in gatefold sleeve packaging being made available, plus The Prisoner white vinyl which is presented in an overprinted transparent plastic sleeve limited to just 1,000 copies.
They will be presented on 180g ‘virgin’ vinyl featuring new transfers from original analogue tape elements. Ray Staff (internationally recognised for his work with Muse, The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin among others) and John Webber at Sir George Martin’s legendary AIR studios who worked on the mastering/vinyl cutting; the high quality pressing done by the renowned Pallas pressing plant in Germany.
For the serious audiophile, a vinyl release is in essence an ‘artefact’, and the sleeve construction and design form an important part of the complete package: something that no digital download can deliver.
As with Network’s previous successful vinyl soundtrack releases, these new titles will be issued in deluxe gatefold sleeves, printed on high quality laminated card, replicating a style of packaging seen on many vintage album releases. The sleeve designs use original photographs and re-creations of the title graphics as they appeared on screen.
In addition, The Prisoner soundtrack is being made available in a very limited white vinyl edition. The white disc, with no labels, immediately brings to mind the iconic ‘Rover’ from the TV series, and is packaged in a transparent plastic sleeve, similar in style to those used on picture disc releases. The clear plastic sleeve is overprinted with an image of Patrick McGoohan’s face, so that when the disc is inserted, the whole package depicts the famous attack sequence, seen in numerous episodes, as Number 6 is ‘smothered’ by Rover. A full colour inlay card inserted behind the disc completes this highly collectable edition.
Network MD Tim Beddows on The Prisoner track selection
When we licensed The Prisoner from Granada Ventures in 2004 we were lucky enough to have almost unrestricted access to the ITC archive, and this presented the opportunity to thoroughly search for mislaid assets, different versions, some rumoured and some mythologised bits and pieces – some of which did indeed turn out to be mythological. This really is what drove our celebrated 2007 40th anniversary release and the subsequent, further improved Blu-ray issue later.
Although not necessarily lost but certainly in a bit of a mess were the original music tapes which we later released almost note-for-note complete. A worthy companion release certainly, punctuated with notes from masterly music editor Eric Mival and with some piecing together from esteemed Prisoner authorities, we were happy to issue it if only for the sake of completion. Now, in 2015, we have even more control over the source material and, indeed, the final output, which makes this new vinyl release the ultimate if you are a fan of the music element of the series. And who isn’t?
The track selections are based around the key themes used in the specifically-scored episodes (as well as Ron Grainer’s classic, timeless main themes, of course), many of which were omitted from an earlier vinyl release in the 1980s. That is the main draw here, whether you purchase the standard gatefold or the white vinyl Rover edition.
Designer and Musician Martin Cater on Gideon’s Way
Back in 2009, when Network released The Music of ITC on CD, the sleeve notes stated that the incidental music cues for Gideon’s Way were believed lost. This was indeed the case… in 2009. But six years is a long time in archive television research – and as we continue to scour the vaults, blowing the dust from film and tape cans that have often been misplaced or even misidentified, several important archive recoveries have been made. Not the least of these has been the discovery of the missing incidental music tapes for this seminal ITC series.
Prior to our 2005 DVD release, Gideon’s Way was a forgotten series, remembered only by a few die-hard fans, and on its reappearance many were surprised at the stark realism of the material, especially compared with more typical ITC fare such as The Baron. It is now rightly regarded as a forerunner of the harder-edged, shot-on-the-streets realism that would characterise later series such as The Sweeney.
Uncompromising in its day, Gideon’s Way tackled some of the darker, more disturbing facets of detective work, and this downplayed, at times neo-realist approach is reflected in Edwin Astley’s incidental music score. The cues are often angry, dissonant and jarring – a far cry from the sprightly, upbeat themes that accompanied the exploits of Simon Templar. Gideon’s Way could hardly be called Music for Pleasure, but there is a lot more to the enjoyment of soundtrack albums than simply listening to pleasant melodies. These selections vividly conjur up a lost London of docklands, lock-up garages and dingy, gas-lit alleyways… a monochrome landscape that formed the brutal stamping ground of the villains of yesteryear.
It feels entirely appropriate that, for a series that is so much an artefact of the 1960s, the accompanying soundtrack should see its world premiere on a vinyl album mastered directly from the original analogue tapes. Network are proud to present this rare material for the first time on any format, and as with the accompanying release of The Prisoner, the utmost care and attention to detail has been taken in compiling and mastering these archive recordings.
And, that’s not all; to celebrate the brand new vinyl releases of The Prisoner and Gideon’s Way soundtracks we thought it was only right to revisit some of our other fantastic soundtrack releases. For a limited time only you can bag yourself some classics including Man in a Suitcase, The Saint, Strange Report, Danger Man and many more for up to 55% off!