REVIEW - "Dead Air" audio CD

BBC Audio out March 4
Available on 1xCD [RRP £8.99]

One wonders if this particular release from BBC Audio should come with one of those warnings you get for some films. You know, "Contains one sex word" or "Watch out! Mild peril!" and stuff like that. Why? Well, Dead Air contains the words "fanny" and "drizzle" (in the same sentence, no less). Yes, you should be shocked - won't someone please think of the children?

Aside from the gratuitous language, writer James Goss (wasn't he the bass player from Bros?) has taken the classic "base under siege" routine and given it a spin as The Doctor finds himself trapped on "Pirate Radio" ship back in the 60s. He's not alone and Davey T manages some top accents with a Liverpudlian gal and a Bill Nighy~esque DJ as his ship~mates but something else lurks there - the Hush.

It's a weapon leftover from the Time War that devours anything that make a noise. So, not so much as don't blink as don't whisper and Goss manages to create an immensely creepy tale - though it is spoiled from time to time with needless continuity references and in~jokes.

The production is wonderful, using a unique premise to frame the tale (which I won't spoil for you). I also won't spoil the ending for you (keep listening after the credits) but it's certainly the best audio denouement I've heard, with the tension ramped up as much as it flippin' well gets. And utterly memorable.

Dead Air would have made such a good episode (could still do!) and I can't recommend this one highly enough - almost perfect. An ideal way to celebrate the "passing" of The Tenth Doctor.

Blogtor Rating 8/10

Thanks to BBC Audio

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