When it comes to iconic sounds of synthesis, few are as memorable as Vangelis‘ Main Titles for the classic science fiction film Blade Runner.
When Blade Runner was released, in 1982, many were confused by the movie’s narrative. Others were put off by the story’s dark tone, or by Harrison Ford’s deadpan voice-overs.
Few recognized the movie as a future classic.
The completeness of Ridley Scott’s fully realized, all-enveloping world, though, was immediately recognized. And even after more than 25 years, Scott’s visuals, combined with Vangelis’ stunning score, set the standard by which other science fiction films are measured.
Vangelis entire score to Blade Runner is a classic, but the “brass” theme from his Main Titles is iconic.
Embedded above, the opening scenes of Blade Runner, which kick in at about 2:30, immediately thrust you into a stunning futuristic world. The amazing visuals are accompanied by depth-shaking electronic drones and percussion, and a soaring Yamaha CS-80 lead that concisely sets the tone for the film.
While Vangelis used the rare CS-80 extensively throughout Blade Runner, synthesists have been using all sorts of synths to approximate the iconic sound of his Main Titles since.
Here’s a demonstration using the Yamaha CS-70, a younger sibling to the CS-80, to recreate the iconic sound:
But do you have to have a rare vintage Yamaha synth to get that awesome sound?