John Corigliano – Altered States (1980)
Turbulent, surreal score mixing textural orchestra and electronic processing in fantastically emotive ways. The melodic themes are also cleverly treated in their development. – One of the best film scores ever composed.
John Williams – The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
Assured and exciting (check out the cue ‘The Asteroid Field’). The best of the Star Wars films.
James Horner – Star Trek II – The Wrath of Khan (1982)
James Horner imbues this film with lavish, nautical references. Inspired by Prokofiev. Check out the long cue ‘Battle in the Mutura Nebula’.
Giorgio Moroder – Cat People (1982)
Growling synthesizers (check out ‘Leopard Tree Dream’) and good music for jogging in ‘Paul’s Theme’. Fresh, organic, analogue sound.
Vangelis – Bladerunner (1982)
Simple melodies for the complex sound of future loneliness.
Edward Williams – The Discovery of Animal Behaviour (1982)
Little known. Exciting, colourful, dramatic modal music for this classic documentary series.
Score unavailable, so here’s a suite from Edward Williams’s ‘Life on Earth’:
Stewart Copeland – Rumble Fish (1983)
Possibly the best rock score ever written. Clever use of looped, sampled rhythmic sounds, for metaphorical story-telling. Extraordinary textures (e.g. high-pitched metals for fast-changing cloud formations).
Jean Prodromides – Danton (1983)
Imaginative and highly original use of Ligeti-style textural choirs. Prodromides focuses on sound masses rather than melody.
Ryusihi Sakamoto – Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence (1983)
Early synthesizer score with beautiful Japanese modalities, Captivating.