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CD coverSoundtrack CD

Whether you're a Star Maidens fan or not, do yourself a favour and snap up any copy you might find of this CD! The TV series might not be a bona fide classic but its seriously funky score is. In my opinion as TV incidental music it's right up there with Laurie Johnson's classy Avengers scores or the Hammondelia of Barry Gray's UFO (the latter or which was AT! LAST! issued in 2004 as a limited vinyl release from Trunk Records; see the Trunk Website).

The German release of the entire original soundtrack in 1999, to tie-in with the Hessischer Rundfunk repeats, was something of a surprise since the OST had not been released back in the 70s - one assumes that the bods at arcane soundtrack compilers Cinesoundz managed to locate the original master tapes of the series' music.

The series' music was the work of the German arranger, composer and producer Friedel Berlipp, who recorded this score under the more American nom de plume of Berry Lipman. Berlipp had been a conductor of the German National Theatre Orchestra in the 50s before becoming active in the Euro-pop world in the early 60s.

While the CD contains all authentic recordings there is a bonus or two - Starship Strut is a wah-wah infected piece in a Shaft-like vein, made up of two old Lipman works from outside the series. Another track, the lusty Sex World, didn't appear in the TV episodes and is in fact a vocal version of an instrumental piece which was used in the series (included here as Highway Patrol). Check out those lyrics! 'Sex World... do what you will/ Sex World... you'll have your fill/ Give us your trust - climb on a bus/ Leave the loving to us/ So great it will be' Crazy man, crazy. A disco piece with the repetative refrain 'I Like It' is reused here as Earth Party. There's also a stomping remix of the main theme included here (by one Ali N Askin) which is far better than these things usually are. Another trancey mix (Slice of Time) takes a vocal sample from President Ela - I think it's "and life begins anew" from The End of Time - and sets it to a hypnotic groove and is not bad at all. A CD single was released in Germany which included the theme remix, the original theme song and I Like It/Earth Party - although I don't know whether this disc was a radio promo item or released for actual sale.

As has been the trend in movie scores since Reservoir Dogs all those years ago, the music is interspersed with the campest choice dialogue from the programme but note that is taken from the German language version! I had no idea what the line of Octavia's which opens the CD - "Kraftfeldverstarker - voll!' - might mean but thanks to all those who mailed to tell me it's actually the quite mundane order "Force field - full power!".

Jap issueIn all this is one funky mother of a score which simply must be had! The CD is still available several years after its 1999 release - the only official issue outside of Germany was a release in the country of all obscure muzak, Japan (issue shown left). Also note that no vinyl LP was - to my knowledge - ever issued. Your best bet in tracking down a copy today is to try either the Cinesoundz website, All Score Media or, in the UK, the amazing soundtrack emporium that is Movie Grooves.

Click here to hear the series End Theme (approx 1MB download)