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Line of Duty on BBC: Who wrote the music and can you buy the soundtrack?

Jed Mercurio's hit police drama Line of Duty returns to the BBC this year with a sixth series. But who composed its high-octane score?

Line of Duty on BBC: Who wrote the music and can you buy the soundtrack?

The music of Jed Mercurio’s hit show Line of Duty has helped cement its reputation as one of the BBC’s most exciting and talked-about police dramas. With season 6 coming out this year, we’re shining a spotlight on the brilliant composer behind the programme’s dramatic score – as well as a few others you might have heard of. 

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The first five series of Line of Duty are now available to watch on BBC iPlayer, starring Martin Compston, Vicky McClure and Adrian Dunbar.

Who wrote the music to BBC’s Line of Duty?

The score and theme music for BBC’s Line of Duty was written by Canadian/British composer Carly Paradis, who, as well as having worked on the scores for The Pembrokeshire Murders and Lady Chatterley’s Lover, is probably best known for her score to The Innocents, the 2018 Netflix supernatural drama.

In 2019, Carly Paradis performed her score for The Innocents at the BBC Proms with the London Contemporary Orchestra and its conductor Robert Ames. The performance was part of a Late Night Prom celebrating sci-fi music for film and television.

Paradis’s score for Line of Duty features a blend of orchestral instruments and electronic textures. Using electronic beats, tuned and untuned percussion, the score is full of racing rhythms to tie in with the programme’s dramatic plot.

She talked to Katie Derham on Radio 3’s In Tune programme about how she develops atmosphere and tension in her writing for Line of Duty. ‘We wanted a bold, fresh new take on the police procedural drama,’ she told Derham. ‘I’m a bit of a method composer – I write with my heart rather than my head and my whole emotional self is involved in the writing process.’

She also described the writing process of the end credits of Line of Duty. ‘Maybe it’s because I’ve got an indie pop/rock side to my songwriting, but I sometimes write lyrics and then remove them, using their melody as part of the arrangement. The end credits uses a four-note motif which, when I wrote it, I set to the words ‘Line of Duty.”

Paradis has worked with Clint Mansell on several of his films, arranging piano parts for his score for MoonThere are moments of her Line of Duty score which seem to echo Mansell’s soundworlds and the techniques he uses. The shimmering strings and electronic shift to her score are techniques also used in Mansell’s iconic score for Requiem for a Dream

The first season was released in 2012, with the album of the original soundtrack released two years later.

Paradis studied music and multimedia, specialising in digital studio composition.

Can you buy the soundtrack to BBC’s Line of Duty?

You can buy the original Line of Duty soundtrack in digital mp3 format from Amazon.

Can you stream the soundtrack to BBC’s Line of Duty?

You can stream Carly Paradis’s Line of Duty soundtrack now from the following streaming platforms:

Where can you watch Line of Duty internationally?

All five seasons of Line of Duty are available to watch on Amazon Prime. Each episode is available to buy for £2.49 or £13.99 for the full series.

You can buy Line of Duty in DVD format from the following outlets:

When will season 6 of Line of Duty be released in the UK and internationally?

Season six of Line of Duty will begin on BBC One on Sunday 21 March at 9pm. Series two is currently being repeated on BBC One, with all five previous series available to watch on BBC iPlayer.

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The BBC Press Office recently announced that there will be seven episodes instead of the usual six.

Watch the trailer for BBC’s Line of Duty