I love Doctor Who, and I believe it to have some of the best music in any TV show ever. Murray Gold is a genius (and Segun Akinola too … sometimes), and his musical compositions will stick with me forever.
I have so many favourites, in fact, that I’ve selected my top 20 tracks from the modern series. Let’s get to it!
Before we begin, here a a few of of my related blog posts:
20 – Goodbye Pond
It feels like cheating having “Goodbye Pond” on this list, as the scene accompanying it is why it stands out so much.
Amy and Rory’s farewell is one of the saddest send-offs of the show, and Murray Gold always knows how to tug on your heart-strings with his instrumentation.
19 – Abigail’s Song (Silence Is All You Know)
“Silence Is All You Know” isn’t particularly a Doctor Who song, but it’s so gorgeous (and sung to perfection by Katherine Jenkins) that I had to include it.
18 – The Shepherd’s Boy
Heaven Sent is one of Nu Who’s crowning achievements, and Steven Moffat’s writing / Peter Capaldi’s acting made the last five minutes something I’ll never forget.
As expected, Murray Gold also rose to the challenge. “The Shepherd’s Boy” is a brilliantly uplifting piece, one worthy of the blood-pumping climax.
17 – Martha’s Theme
Murray Gold was the master of writing character themes, and all of the companions have excellent tracks.
Martha’s Theme is the “least good” of the RTD era, but I still love how subdued and sombre it is.
16 – Blink – Suite
For an episode that relied on silent tension to provide the horror, Blink has its Suite to thank for amplifying the atmosphere in every scene.
15 – The Majestic Tale (Of A Madman In A Box)
An absolute triumph of a track, “The Majestic Tale (Of A Madman In A Box)” exudes arrogance and victory.
14 – Donna’s Theme
The previous character themes had been a little dour and melancholy, so it was fun to get a more whimsical one.
Donna’s Theme perfectly reflects Catherine Tate’s performance, and it accompanies the comedic scenes really well.
13 – Thirteen
The only Segun Akinola track on this list, it’s only recently that I’ve truly come to appreciate the Thirteenth Doctor’s Theme.
I especially love its use during the most recent regeneration – it almost reminds me of a track from The Witcher 3 or Skyrim.
12 – Clara?
The impossible girl herself got a theme as light-hearted and mysterious as she.
When the full orchestra kicks in halfway through, you know it’s a classic.
11 – The Long Song
I don’t like “The Rings of Akhaten”. It’s a soppy story that exists purely to build to a decent speech. What I cannot deny, however, is the awesome music.
It’s one of the definitive songs of the Eleventh Doctor’s tenure, and it even made a cameo in his regeneration scene (more on that later!)
10 – Rose’s Theme
Murray Gold needed to make a great first impression for Nu Who’s first companion, and he delivered.
Rose’s Theme is both romantic and heart-breaking, with a twinge of Sci-Fi to remind you what show you’re watching.
9 – Infinite Potential
The Eleventh Doctor’s regeneration is one of the saddest scenes in the show, in no small part due to the music.
This is Murray Gold firing on all cylinders, and we even get some motifs from “The Long Song” to really amplify the drama.
As a point of reference, every song from “Infinite Potential” onwards is God-tier. They’re all 10/10 masterpieces, and they made the show as good as it is.
8 – All the Strange Creatures
Doctor Who has never made a better song to go with trailers than “All the Strange Creatures”.
It fully encapsulates the danger of travelling with the Doctor, whilst hinting at the expansive array of villains and creatures.
7 – The Doctor’s Theme
I really like the Ninth and Tenth Doctor’s theme – it emanates pure sadness, and it accompanies some of the Doctor’s lowest moments.
Call me crazy, but I can hear the history of the devastating Time War within the composition’s notes – that’s how you know you’ve made a great track.
6 – A Good Man?
From one Doctor theme to another, the Twelfth Doctor’s Theme “A Good Man?” has the same kind of pulsating energy as “I Am The Doctor”, whilst also bringing a darkness befitting of Capaldi’s performance.
If it wasn’t so overplayed every bloody episode, this could have been top three.
5 – Doomsday
Some people say that Season 2’s finale was overblown and overly dramatic, but that’s exactly why I loved it so much.
“Doomsday” is an immensely tragic track, and I really feel for the Doctor and Rose as they’re separated for all eternity.
4 – I Am The Doctor
Murray Gold ditched the brooding, moody Doctor theme when the time came to make “I Am The Doctor”, and it was a stroke of genius.
The Eleventh Doctor’s theme is just about as euphoric and triumphant as it gets, and the energy and tension it always brings to a scene is nothing short of genius.
3 – Doctor Who Theme
What more can be said about the greatest TV theme song of all time?
Ever since the 60’s, the Doctor Who Theme has remained the epitome of Sci-Fi music. It’s weird, it’s catchy, and it’s oh so memorable.
2 – This Is Gallifrey: Our Childhood. Our Home
These top two tracks are different gravy, and I’d even go as far as saying they’re some of my favourite compositions ever.
Murray Gold takes us on one hell of a musical journey, and some of the individual passages and instrumental phrasings never fail to give me goosebumps.
1 – Vale Decem
My favourite Doctor and my favourite regeneration also has my favourite track in the series. I think it’s fair to say I like this scene quite a bit.
The build-up to the climactic moment – choral chanting and all – sends chills down my spine, and the motifs after “I don’t want to go!” make me want to cry. It’s the Doctor Who track that elicits the greatest emotional response from me, so it had to come in at top spot.
Aaand that’s my list. You can check out some of my latest blog posts below:
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