“No-one would have believed, in the last years of the nineteenth century, that human affairs were being watched from the timeless worlds of space. No-one could have dreamed that we were being scrutinized, as someone with a microscope studies creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. Few men even considered the possibility of life on other planets. And yet, across the gulf of space, minds immeasurably superior to ours regarded this earth with envious eyes, and slowly and surely, they drew their plans against us…”
Jeff Wayne – The War of the Worlds
These words are an adaptation of the first paragraph of the HG Wells novel of the same name upon which Jeff Wayne based his superb concept album. They are spoken by Richard Burton who lends to them a gravitas which has the effect of chilling the listener to the bone. Wells was a visionary and Wayne’s rendition of his story in the concept album is no less visionary. When CDs first came out this was one album I had to get. It, like the book, is a true classic featuring Justin Hayward of the Moody Blues, Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy and of course the incomparable voice of Richard Burton as the narrator.
If you are not aware of this work or have not experienced it then do yourself a favour and get yourself a copy. It will reward repeated listening as it is rich in detail and depth. The album art is also brilliantly rendered. I remember as a 10 year old boy growing up I had a picture of a tripod attacking the Thunderchild with its heat ray on my bedroom wall.
This is a must have for anyone who appreciates the narrative musical format and indeed anyone who appreciates great music.