Recreating The Sounds Of Blade Runner With The Black Corporation Deckard’s Dream

In his latest video, composer Christian Henson takes a look at creating Blade Runner-style sounds, with the Black Corporation Deckard’s Dream mkII.

The Deckard’s Dream is a modern 8-voice analog synth that’s inspired by the classic Yamaha CS-80 and the Vangelis score of the movie Blade Runner.

Henson describes his video as a “poor mans homage to Vangelis‘ seminal score, from Ridley Scott’s seminal film Blade Runner.” The video focuses on recreating the Blade Runner Brass sound, one of the iconic sounds of synthesis.

Synthesists have been batty about Vangelis’s expressive synth brass sound, since Blade Runner was released in 1982. The sound is so well-known that it’s become a common preset on synths.

But, while you can get close to the sound with a microKorg, a Behringer D or a Little Phatty – the sound is so familiar that recreations tend to have an ‘uncanny valley’ quality. This is in large part because of the unique design of the CS-80. The Deckard’s Dream synth design is close enough that it comes close to nailing the classic CS-80 sound. Here’s an example by sound designer Paul Schilling:

Check out the video and let us know what you think. And, if you’ve got your own ways to get ‘Blade Runner-y” with synths, leave a comment and share your tips!

18 thoughts on “Recreating The Sounds Of Blade Runner With The Black Corporation Deckard’s Dream

  1. WHY is more of the question. I find it amusing that several presets in almost any synth take me back to 1982, “Pulstar” and “Memories Of Green” immediately. Just recognizing it puts you in a certain cultural group. Even calling it “Blade Runner music” almost means you shouldn’t go there. Its the “Jump” of the more serious synth in-crowd, heh!

    Full disclosure: Mr. Hypocritical Poser Bastard plays a Memorymoon ME80 and I love it. “China” is a masterpiece. Just pick your Vangelis patches carefully. His best sounds are great because its him, not them.

  2. Absent poly aftertouch, it’s not quite the same playing experience.

    Using: RD-2000, Logic Pro X, Omnisphere, Keyscape, Komplete 12, CFX Lite, Arturia V, Pigments, ME80, VPS Avenger, u-he Diva, Hive2, Roland Cloud, OB-E, OP-X, 27” Retina iMac

    Sold: Korg: Kronos 88, T3, MS20, Yamaha: Motif XS8, Motif ES8, Motif 8, KX88, TX802, Oberheim: Modular 8 Voice, OBXa, OB8, Prophet 5, Roland D50, Dyno-My-Rhodes, Crumar T2

  3. Christian Henson is great!! I can’t believe I haven’t seen his videos until now, this is one of my favorite Deckard’s demos. He is really spot-on about everything.

  4. Usually, I’m on board with these kinds of ‘Runner-centric videos, but this missed the mark. I usually like CH’s content, this one was off.

  5. Person #1: “OMG, I’ve heard this sound 1,000 times!!! Please stop!! That piano patch is killing me!!”
    Person #2: “Uh…it’s not a patch, it’s a real acoustic piano…”
    Person #1: “Uh…whatever…NOBODY could create cool music with THAT…presets suck…”
    Person #2: “Uh…it’s not a preset…it’s a real piano”
    Person #1: “BOOORRRRRRING!!”

    I get where folks are coming from. There’s sometimes a fine line between an “iconic sound” and an “overused patch”, but I would also say it has a lot to do with what notes are played with that iconic sound. If every demo I saw of someone playing a beautiful-sounding acoustic piano started with the “Tubular Bells” piano theme (aka “The Exorcist Theme”), I’d start to roll my eyes too.

    Still, it doesn’t mean both a well-made acoustic piano and a reverb-drenched CS-80 brass patch can’t produce amazing sounds and amazing music…

  6. we all want a Deckard’s Dream, and CH is definitely not the first, and certainly wont be the last YouTube personality to remind us of our burning desire. maybe one day!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *