Damask Rose

Another modal number, this time a viola line (or violin, I’m not sure – sorry orchestra nerds!) based around C Lydian, a mode of G major that has a broadly mystical quality to it:

It sounds semi-improvised to me; the piece is quite short and has no real chord changes so this is entirely believable.

That said, there are some harmonies that enter an octave below around the 0:50 mark so there could have been some pre-agreed motifs floating around.

Blade Runner (End Titles)

You know when I said that the soundtrack hadn’t dated badly? Well…I remember being quite disappointed when this sequenced italo bass came in over the ending credits watching the film for the first time. It actually gets a lot better as it goes on though:

I’m going to look at the main chord progression which is moved across different instruments throughout the piece but is generally the same. It’s 16 bars long and at 113 bpm.

The main sequenced bass can be emulated with (almost) any-old subtractive synthesiser, particularly if it has an onboard sequencer. Thankfully the nice guys at LennarDigital have done the hard work for us with Sylenth1 – patch 385 (aptly named Blade Runner) gets pretty darn close.

The patch is two sawtooths separated by an octave with some envelope controlled low-pass filtering. The crux of the sound comes from the synth’s arpeggiator, found in the master FX section.

Sylenth

We can see it’s just four notes, moving up by two and three semitones on the third and fourth notes. Pretty simple. The sound’s finished off with some EQ, compression and reverb.

The rest of the arrangement comes from a string ensemble (the same Mini_Pro Chorus Warm EXS24 instrument I used in previous examples) and a tweaked version of the TCS JX-8P Strings 1 patch from Arturia’s Jupiter 8. The main chords are from the ES2 ‘Main Titles’ patch and the bass is from Arturia’s Mini V.

To finish off there a descending harp-like pattern courtesy of Logic’s EFM1 and a pitch-bent triangle wave right at the end of the section from Logic’s RetroSynth. The hi-hat and kick pattern are from a CR-78 kit in Native Instruments’ (free) Kontakt player:

The music is fairly simple with the bass ostinato playing as follows: four bars of C, two bars of G, two bars of D, four bars of F and four bars of C.

The main lead synth plays in octave but I’ve just transcribed the higher octave: the lower can be added in quite easily either with the same (or left) hand or through an additional oscillator tuned -12 semitones. Like the opening titles, this is played with plenty of modulation to get extra expression.

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There are a fair few entries in WhoSampled of this, so without further ado:

Westworld – Techno Cop [1990]

VNV Nation – Cold [2001]

Kuedo – Flight Path [2011]

Le Matos – Retired [2011] (also contains an interpolated version of the Main Titles)

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