Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

8

Vangelis: Vangelis: Blade Runner OST

Nenad Georgievski By

Sign in to view read count
At its worst, the music of Greek composer and multi-instrumentalist Vangelis is full of sounds and furies that signify absolutely nothing. At its best, his recordings incorporate many types of sounds and beautiful and memorable melodies that nod in the direction of a number of different musical styles without destroying the overall mood of his records. Certainly, he is one of the great popularizers of the synthesizer, and the first to win an Oscar for his completely synthetisized score to the 1981 film Chariots of Fire. So evocative of the tale of the great British runners was his music, for which he was awarded with an Oscar, and that further propelled him as a film music composer of higher stature. The following year he would create probably his most important music when he scored Ridley Scott's Sci-Fi opus Blade Runner.

This masterpiece of dystopian science fiction has been the longest work in progress, as through the years it was reshaped and re- released as a Director's Cut and finally in 2007 as Final Cut (boxed in a metal case with plenty of different cuts and other material). It is a seamless portrait of the future that glossed on neon-laced decay, where overcrowded cities were full of hustlers, strugglers and street gangs, and the sky was lit by giant corporate logos and video billboards that hyped exotic getaways on other planets. Based loosely on Philip K Dick's novel, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? , it presents a vision of Los Angeles circa 2019, in which a policeman is hunting androids (replicants). Eerily evocative of a very plausible (though perhaps more distant) future, Scott's vision was perfectly complemented by Vangelis' unearthly score, which deploys grand pianos, keyboards and synthesizers to memorable effect.

But just as the film itself has had a difficult birth, production, and afterlife, spawning its various different versions, so has its soundtrack had a similar life path. Inexplicably, the score was never properly released at the time, due to a dispute between the composer and the auteur—it was released as a symphonic version, until East West did so in 1994. Subject to widespread bootlegging, it wasn't until 2007 that it was released with the film's Final Cut, as a triple album with plenty of unreleased material. This edition is the re-release of the 1994 album that has been expertly mastered for a Limited 24kt Gold SACD Hybrid pressing.

Vangelis is a master builder, and throughout his architecture is multilayered, solid and tangible, yet amorphous and cloudy. The textures which Vangelis coaxes are fabulous. He activates unusual angles and sends those textures sliding into another. So luminous are his touches on the keys, and so spatial the production sound, that again and again the effect is one of ensemble music or the luster of organic instruments. For Vangelis, electronic and organic sounds are legitimate sources of material with which to beautify his work. The overall feeling is of icy alienation in a world inhabited by machines with emotions.

Vangelis' soundtrack to the Ridley Scott film Blade Runner still stands as one of the twentieth century's greatest achievements in sound. It functions on various levels. As a soundtrack, it is an integral part of the movie, a character of its own that strengthens the moods and illuminating the story rather than merely following it. As an album, it is a near perfect collection of atmospheric sculptures that provide an intriguing listen. It is a prime example of how to make soundtrack music sounding evocative and emotional. Remarkably dramatic, even visual, it deserves recognition as one of the finest soundtracks of all time.

Track Listing: Main Titles; Blush Response; Wait For Me; Rachel's Song; Love Theme; One More Kiss, Dear; Blade Runner Blues; Memories of Green; Tales of the Future; Damask Rose; Blade Runner(End Titles); Tears in Rain.

Personnel: Original music composed and performed by Vangelis; Demis Roussos: vocals; Dick Morrissey: saxophone; Mary Hopkins: vocal.

Title: Vangelis: Blade Runner OST | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Audio Fidelity


Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Strange Days - 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition Extended Analysis Strange Days - 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
by Doug Collette
Published: December 9, 2017
Read Trouble No More - The Bootleg Series Vol. 13 / 1979-1981 Extended Analysis Trouble No More - The Bootleg Series Vol. 13 / 1979-1981
by Doug Collette
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Love, Gloom, Cash, Love Extended Analysis Love, Gloom, Cash, Love
by Patrick Burnette
Published: October 21, 2017
Read Motel Shot: Expanded Edition Extended Analysis Motel Shot: Expanded Edition
by Doug Collette
Published: July 16, 2017
Read Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band 50th Anniversary Super Deluxe  Edition Extended Analysis Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band 50th...
by Doug Collette
Published: May 27, 2017
Read "Chicago II (Steven Wilson Remix)" Extended Analysis Chicago II (Steven Wilson Remix)
by John Kelman
Published: February 12, 2017
Read "Phish: St. Louis '93" Extended Analysis Phish: St. Louis '93
by Doug Collette
Published: April 1, 2017
Read "Wingfield Reuter Stavi Sirkis: The Stone House" Extended Analysis Wingfield Reuter Stavi Sirkis: The Stone House
by John Kelman
Published: March 4, 2017
Read "The Rascals: The Complete Singles A's & B's" Extended Analysis The Rascals: The Complete Singles A's & B's
by Doug Collette
Published: April 1, 2017
Read "Chick Corea: The Musician" Extended Analysis Chick Corea: The Musician
by John Kelman
Published: May 2, 2017
Read "Ella Fitzgerald: 100 Songs For A Centennial" Extended Analysis Ella Fitzgerald: 100 Songs For A Centennial
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: April 29, 2017

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!