Tracks Abyss

The COMPLETE TRACKS BOX SET.

All episodes of all 5 series of TRACKS are now available here:

Series 1 – Tracks ORIGIN (9 x45 mins)

Series 2 – Tracks STRATA (6 x 15 mins)

Series 3 – Tracks CHIMERA (9 x 45 mins)

Series 4 – Tracks INDIGO (10 x 15 mins)

Series 5 – Tracks ABYSS (9 x 45 mins)

All episodes available on iTunes, Spotify, and BBC Sounds.

(and probably elsewhere too.)

WRITER’S NOTE:

40+ episodes. More than 24 hours of drama.

Now the full series has been been broadcast, here are a few THANKS.

The main Producer/Director on TRACKS is James Robinson. (James and I have worked together on this series for over 6 years. There’s no better creative collaborator.)

The main Sound Designer throughout has been the amazing Nigel Lewis of BBC Wales in Cardiff. (He was given the Best Use of Sound award at the Audio Drama Awards for his work on Tracks Series 1.)

Our sound engineer has been the terrific Cathy Robinson of BBC Wales in Cardiff.

The production team in Cardiff, Eleri, Lindsay, Willa have been supportive, good humoured, and brilliant throughout.

Our leading actors have been extraordinary and a dream to work with: Romola Garai, Fiona O’shaughnessy, Hattie Morahan, and Olivia Poulet.

And, of course, our Freddy – Jonathan Forbes. (A force of energy, and creativity every step of the way.)

We’ve also had an incredibly strong guest and support cast- too many to mention.

We’ve had other writers on some episodes in series 3 and 5 – who have all embraced the show and done amazing work – Lucy Catherine, Caroline Horton, Timothy X Atack, Matt Hartley, and Katherine Chandler.

And a number of Directors on episodes in series 3 and 5:

John Norton, Rebecca Lloyd Evans, Carl Prekopp.

And Helen Perry, and Abigail Le Fleming in Series 1 who both helped set up the show.

Thanks also to the commissioners Alison Hindell, and Jeremy Howe (who took the punt on Tracks in the first place.) Without them it wouldn’t have happened.

In the top menu there’s a link to some Q&As I did after Series 1 aired. If there are more questions I’ll add to this list as and when.

Finally – thanks for listening! Especially those of you who have stuck with us throughout. Your engagement has meant so much. MB

Trailer for Episode 9

PRESS FOR SERIES 5 – TRACKS ABYSS:

Radio Times
Total TV Magazine
The Guardian
The Times
Express
The Observer

Observer Review – 8th November 2020

INTERVIEW: An interview with Matthew Broughton for Sci-fi Bulletin.

TRACKS ABYSS has been shortlisted in “The Creativity Award” category at the British Podcast Awards 2021.

TRACKS Series 4 : INDIGO

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The fourth Series of Tracks: Indigo is now available.

10 Episodes of 15 minutes each.

Details Here.

The entire series (and all 3 of the previous series) are available on BBC SOUNDS and as a PODCAST.

(Be aware that the episodes are often out of order on BBC SOUNDS (I have no idea why) – so double check or use the Tracks Homepage:)

TRACKS HOMEPAGE ON BBC WEBSITE

Starring:

Dr Helen Ash – Romola Garai

Freddy Fuller – Jonathan Forbes

Helen is involved in a serious car accident – but why did the car hit her? Where was she going? What is wrong with her baby daughter Frances? And what’s wrong with time?

Press:

The Observer

The Observer

daily mail

Daily Mail

sunday times

Sunday Times

TRACKS series 1, 2 and 3. (and 4)

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Ahead of Series 4, TRACKS Indigo-

The BBC have put the first 3 series of TRACKS onto BBC SOUNDS.

For design consistency the first series is now called TRACKS Origin.

ORIGIN

STRATA

and CHIMERA

(For reasons I don’t understand, the episodes are often out of order on BBC SOUNDS – so do double check!)

Are all now available:

HERE

COMING SOON:     Series 4: Tracks Indigo

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Tracks Chimera

Tracks Chimera (Tracks Series 3)

The return of Dr Helen Ash and Freddy.

Tracks Chimera is now going out every Thursday at 2.15pm on BBC Radio 4.  (The series finale will be broadcast on R4 on 27th December.)

All 9 episodes are also now available online as a boxset and podcast.

EPISODE 1

EPISODE 2

EPISODE 3 –  (Written by Matt Hartley)

EPISODE 4(Written by Lucy Catherine)

EPISODE 5

EPISODE 6 (Written by Caroline Horton)

EPISODE 7 (Written by Timothy Atack)

EPISODE 8

EPISODE 9

BBC Series Link

Podcast (All episodes of Series 3 are now available.)

WARNING: From 26 January 2019   TRACKS: CHIMERA will no longer be freely available to listen to online (The BBC are planning a commercial release later this year).

If you want to hear Series 1 and 2 – They are available on AUDIBLE and AMAZON.

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Helen and Freddy in studio

Tracks Chimera – Previews  / Reviews:

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Radio Times

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Observer

The Observer

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The Times (2/11/18)

Music:

(A list of some of the music used in this series)

Black Phase – by Tim Hecker

Toccata – by Jaga Jazzist

E-musik – by Neu!

Satellite Snyper – by Pantha Du Prince

Im Bann – by Pantha Du Prince

Laker Boo – by Portico Quartet

We Move Lightly – by Dustin O’halloran

Shattered Glass – by DJ Food

Turquoise Hexagon Sun – by Boards of Canada

Seoul – by Amiina

Boga – by Amiina

Elephant Gun – by Beirut

September Song – Agnes Obel

Scenic World – by Beirut

Muesli –  by Minotaur Shock

Beau Nash – by Minotaur Shock

La Foule – by Edith Piaf

Never Understand – by The Jesus and Mary Chain

The Refused are fucking dead – by The Refused

Barok Main – by Mica Levi and Oliver Coates

Singularity – by Jon Hopkins

Demon Brother

Update: Demon Brother is now available on Audible

My 2-part radio drama Demon Brother is on Radio 4 next week.

(Wed 22nd & Thurs 23rd January 2014 BBC Radio 4 – 2.15pm)

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It’s a dark psychological thriller about a pair of twins – Jasper and Eddie – who have been estranged all their lives, until their dad dies – They’re both played by Shaun Dingwall.

Part 1 is Jasper’s Story and from his point of view, Part 2 is Eddie’s  – it’s best to listen to them in order – as there is a bigger story going on in there.

Also in the cast we have – Valene Kane, Kenneth Cranham, Vera Filatova, Simon Ludders, and John Norton.  It  is produced/directed by James Robinson.

We recorded the play in the bbc studio in Cardiff – (lovely team.)

The Radio Times Preview can be found here

The BBC page for the play is here

“Vincent Price and The Horror of The English Blood Beast”

My play about the uneasy relationship between film director Michael Reeves and actor Vincent Price – on the set of seminal 60s English horror movie “The Witchfinder General” – was first broadcast on Radio 4 in the Saturday play slot in 2010.

It’s now been brought to my attention that the play can be listened to Here

There’s also a very good and insightful review / essay written about the play that is HERE – (Even if they do get the title of the play slightly wrong!)

I remember having a roaring time recording the play in Cardiff. The cast included: Kenneth Cranham as Tony Tenser, Nickolas Grace as Vincent Price, and Blake Ritson as Michael Reeves.

*UPDATE* – 1st March 2013-
“Vincent Price and the Horror of the English Blood Beast” will be repeated on Radio 4 next Friday (8th March) evening at 9pm.

*UPDATE* – 7th November 2015 – just seen that the play is up on Youtube.

White Noise

I have a new play on Radio 4 this coming Tuesday (10th April.)

It’s called WHITE NOISE and it is set in current day Dagenham, East London.

The details are here.

Here’s a photo from the studio during recording.

(Ricci Harnett, and Theo Barklum Biggs are the actors pictured playing ‘Danny’ and ‘Freddy’. The back of head belongs to Scott Handcock the production co-ordinator)

The play is part of the ‘Rapid Response’ series. This means that the turnaround time between commissioning and broadcast has been very short (by Radio Drama standards.) This is to ensure that the play is as contemporary as possible – which is what the strand is all about.

(This is Louise Jameson playing ‘Kath’)

Other members of the cast (not pictured) are Matthew Gravelle (Who I’ve worked with on ‘Burning Both Ends’, and ‘Gulliver’s Travels.’) And Ayesha Antoine.

The Director / Producer is James Robinson who I worked with on “The Rain Maker” a couple of years ago. (That was the radio horror play that we recorded on location in a forest in Kent.)

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I’ve adapted Jonathan Swift’s satirical book Gulliver’s Travels for the Classic serial slot on Radio 4.

I love the book.

The last time it was adapted for the radio was 30 or so years ago in a version that only dramatized the first voyage (Lilliput) and starred Frank Finlay and Spike Milligan. (I’ve heard some of it – and it’s really more of a reading of the book than a dramatization.)

My adaptation is in three episodes – each an hour long, and I dramatize all four of Gulliver’s voyages.

In Ep 1 Gulliver goes to Lilliput. (Gulliver a giant among the little people.)

In Ep 2 he goes to Brobdingnag. (Gulliver tiny, among giants.)

In Ep3 he goes to Laputa (the flying island where there are mad inventors) and Glubbdubdrib the tribe of magicians and necromancers.

And finally, he goes to the Country of the Houyhnhnms… A land of rational horses and disgusting humanity – the Yahoos.

The accumulation of the voyages has a profound emotional affect on Gulliver as he moves through his story…

And the end – gets very dark…..

Arthur Darvill plays Gulliver. With a strong supporting cast. It’s been a very technically demanding play. Sam Hoyle directs.

Nigel Lewis creates the sound design.

EP 1 is on this Sunday (5th February) R4 at 3pm. And it’s repeated on the following Saturday (11th February) R4 at 9pm.

Eps 2 and 3 are in the same slots in the following weeks.

(UPDATE: The Radio Times Preview/Review of Episode 1 is now HERE)

 

To those asking about the music we used – here are some of the main themes:

Cape Clear by Seth – titles and credits

String Quartet No 3 {Mishima} 1, from Kronos Quartet plays Philip Glass.

For Sympson’s theme String Quartet No 3 {Mishima} 6, as above.

For Gulliver’s theme Flugufrelsarinn by Kronos Quartet.

Gulliver’s theme Karen B’yr Til Engil & …Eins Og Venjulegt Folk by Johann Johannsson. From album, Englabörn. Label – 4AD – For Houyhnhnm theme.

Burning Both Ends – When Oliver Reed met Keith Moon

I have a new play on Radio 4 this Thursday afternoon (8th December) at 2.15pm…

Set in the Summer of 1974 – “Burning Both Ends” explores the intense, hilarious and very special friendship between English actor Oliver Reed and ‘wild man’ drummer – Keith Moon. It is the story of a “bro-mance” that sprung up when Ken Russell (RIP), playing unwitting match-maker, cast the men opposite each other in his movie version of the rock opera, Tommy.

Keith Moon was the world famous drummer of THE WHO. He had a gargantuan appetite for partying, drugs, alcohol, and pranks – And was looking for a new playmate.

Oliver Reed was the biggest movie star in Britain. His credits included Women in Love, The Three Musketeers, and his iconic role as Bill Sykes in Oliver! He had a beautiful ballerina partner, a huge mansion in Surrey, and a French magazine had voted him ‘the sexiest man’ on earth… Reed had it all… But felt there was something missing from his life… Keith Moon, he decided – “was the path I was looking for”…

It’s a story that I found funny and touching. And the play is a fictionalised account of their time together – mainly set on the south coast while they were on the Tommy shoot.

Sean Pertwee plays Olly – in my opinion, a remarkable transformative performance. (Someone tweeted me that Sean has ‘the most masculine voice in British acting’ And that seems apt for this role!)

Arthur Darvill plays the Keith Moon with a mercurial energy – complex, fun, but with shades of darkness at heart.

Together the actors threw themselves at the roles – playful, funny, joyful, revelatory, naughty, and moving. But that’s just my opinion -and i’m biased.

For details of Burning Both Ends click HERE

[*UPDATE – A feature article I wrote about the play is in today’s Sunday Express. – 4th Dec 2011]

UPDATE – Burning Both Ends is available Here