Blade Runner – Esper Retirement Edition
- Prologue and Main Titles (3.54)
- Leon’s Voight Kampff Test / Sushi Bar (1.36)
- Damask Rose (2.00)
- Spinner Ascent (Los Angeles November 2019) (1.33)
- Blush Response (5.47)
- Wait For Me (5.21)
- Deckard Meets Rachel (1.01)
- Rachel’s Voight Kampff Test (2.32)
- Rachel’s Song (4.28)
- Tales of the Future (On the trail of Nexus 6) (4.44)
- Bicycle Riders (Harps of the Ancient Temples edit) (2.10)
- Chew’s Eye Lab (4.40)
- Memories of Green (5.30)
- Blade Runner Blues (Full length version) (10.05)
- Pris Meets J.F. Sebastian (1.50)
- One More Kiss‚ Dear (3.57)
- Deckard’s Dream (Extended version) (1.18)
- Thinking of Rachel (Love Theme Different Take) (1.25)
- Esper Analysis (2.22)
- Animoid Row Part I (Tales of the Future early demo) (3.40)
- Animoid Row Part II (1.02)
- Taffey Lewis’ Night Club (2.01)
- Salome’s Dance (1.23)
- Zhora’s Retirement (Blade Runner Blues reprise) (1.40)
- I Am The Business (Extended) (3.24)
- Love Theme (4.49)
- I Dreamt Music (Extended) (6.29)
- Morning at the Bradbury (3.25)
- J.F. Sebastian’s Apartment (1.04)
- The Prodigal Son Brings Death (Prelude) (2.01)
- The Prodigal Son Brings Death (3.42)
- Deckard Enters The Bradbury (3.01)
- Dangerous Days (0.58)
- Wounded Animals (10.57)
- Tears In Rain (Time To Die edit) (2.54)
- Rachel Sleeps (1.52)
- End Titles (Full length version) (7.15)
- Los Angeles – November 2019
- Third Sector – China Town
- Fourth Sector – Downtown
- Nineteenth Sector – Police Headquarters
- Twenty-Fifth Sector – Tyrell Corporation
- Seventh Sector – Apartment 9732
- Ninth Sector – Urban Blues
- Fifth Sector – Animoid Row
- Second Sector – DNA Row
- Seventh Sector – Apartment 9732 (reprise)
- Eighth Sector – Nocturnal Rain
- Tenth Sector – The Bradbury Building
DISC 4: City Streets suite
- City Streets suite (43.37)
UNUSED MUSIC SUITE
- Longing/Empty Streets (6.57)
- One Alone (2.18)
- Mechanical Dolls (3.40)
- Tears in Rain (Instrumental) (2.56)
- Gail Laughton – “Pompeii 76 A.D.” (2.15)
- Brian Eno & David Byrne – “Qu’Ran” (3.50)
- The Ink Spots – “If I Didn’t Care” (3.09)
- Ensemble Nipponia – “Ogi No Mato” (10.43
BLADE RUNNER – ESPER ‘RETIREMENT’ EDITION –
25TH ANNIVERSARY CULMINATION
6 DISC BOX SET
1. To reach the highest point or degree; a final climactic stage.
2. To come to completion; end. A concluding action.
3. Attainment or arrival at the highest pitch of glory.
1. removal or withdrawal from service, office, or business.
2. the execution of a ‘replicant’ in the motion picture ‘Blade Runner’.
These two words epitomise this release; it is the fourth and final chapter of the ‘Esper’ Blade Runner series of scores. Consisting of a whopping 6 discs this is the ultimate Blade Runner score box set, all details of which can be found in the extensive description below.
The first 2 discs are the score, disc 3 is Los Angeles November 2019, disc 4 contains a specially prepared “City Streets suite” as well as unused Blade Runner music and bonus tracks, disc 5 contains a DJ mix of Blade Runner remixes and music inspired by the film, and disc 6 is a DVD-Rom that contains over 150 Blade Runner remixes.
The first question that might enter one’s head is, “Why is it the final Esper Edition?” The answer is simple: there is nothing more that can be done to the score to make it any better, especially now that the Blade Runner Trilogy release has been made available.
It is fair to say that the Blade Runner Trilogy set is far from complete with a lot of eminent music missing, so this reason alone prompted the need to create the Retirement Edition.
The first thing you will notice about the set is that it is greyscale. Like when a Blade Runner ‘retires’ replicants, the Retirement Edition is intended to illustrate this with its dark artwork. Even the undersides of the discs are black, thus mirroring Ridley Scott’s vision of a futuristic Los Angeles.
The set comes complete with a 4 page booklet. Information about the release can be found on the inside of the box. Please see the photos above.
DISCS 1 & 2: The Score
With all the above now aside, I am sure what most people want to know about is what is on these 6 discs. First of all here is information about the first 2 discs. Like the previous Definitive Collectors Edition (dubbed the MK3 or MR3 by some people) these 2 discs contain the box sets main attraction: this is of course the score. There are many improvements over all other Blade Runner releases.
There has always been an argument to whether the music of Blade Runner sounds better with or without sound effects. The score on the Retirement Edition aims to create the most ‘musically-pure’ and complete Blade Runner listening experience to date. (The original Esper Edition has a lot of sound effects on it.)
The score has been completely remixed and created from scratch so it does sound very different from the previous three ‘Esper’ releases. When the ‘Blade Runner Trilogy’ set was released the original 1994 album was remastered and it is these remastered recordings that are used on the Retirement Edition. Also many other unreleased tracks have been remastered.
One of the most notable additions to this release is the inclusion of a very rare and previously unreleased early demo of “Tales of the Future”. This demo is different to the version released on the 1994 Warner/2007 Blade Runner Trilogy releases and was used for the Animoid Row scene in the movie.
Another piece of music that is on the Retirement Edition and cannot be found on any other previous Blade Runner score is a track entitled “J.F. Sebastian’s Apartment”.
All fans of the “End Titles” will be happy to see that the Retirement Edition contains the best available version as far as completeness and sound quality goes.
Here is a list of all the other improvements:
- The Retirement Edition contains the best available version of the “Prologue and Main Titles”. Whereas earlier releases contain either poor sound quality, inferior mixing or hiss in the background the Retirement Edition doesn’t as it uses the full original studio recording, not previously available anywhere else until now.
- Leon’s Voight Kampff Test” is the original un-modified version (it does not contain the ‘gated’ synth that was added to previous releases for effect – this synth was not Vangelis and you can now hear all of Vangelis’ sounds instead).
- “Blade Runner Blues” no longer has a pitch change at around 8.30 mins and also has improved sound quality.
- “One More Kiss, Dear” now is the original unaltered version.
- “I Am The Business” has been extended and contains better sound quality.
- “I Dreamt Music” has been extended. It is longer than the version on the Blade Runner Trilogy (entitled “Desolation Path”).
- “Dangerous Days” and “Wounded Animals” have much improved sound quality than any previous release. It should be noted that these tracks can be found on the Blade Runner Trilogy as one track entitled “Deckard and Roy’s Duel”, but “Dangerous Days” and “Wounded Animals” on the Retirement Edition are 12 minutes long compared to “Deckard and Roy’s Duel” which is 6 minutes. As you can see the version on the Blade Runner Trilogy has been considerably edited and cut down in length.
- The following tracks have been remastered to improve the sound quality: “Deckard Meets Rachel”, “Deckard’s Dream”, “Thinking of Rachel”, “Salome’s Dance”, “Morning At The Bradbury”. Don’t forget that the tracks that can also be found on the Blade Runner Trilogy have been remastered as well.
- The following tracks no longer contain sound effects, when compared to previous releases: “Rachel’s Voight Kampff Test”, “Chew’s Eye Lab”, “Esper Analysis”, “Rachel Sleeps”.
Disc 3 is the unique “Los Angeles November 2019”, an 80 minute journey into the world of Blade Runner. It was created to transform your living room, your car (or anywhere else you wish to listen it) into the world that you saw on screen, and it features both Vangelis music and the recognisable Blade Runner sound effects. No other Blade Runner release is quite like it. The best way to listen to it is in the dark, in bed or relaxed on the sofa, then just close your eyes and you are immediately transported into the film.
DISC 4: City Streets suite
Another exclusive to the Retirement Edition is the City Streets suite that can be found on this disc. It has been specially prepared by Esper Productions and could be described as a mix between a Blade Runner score CD and the Los Angeles November 2019 release. This is because it aims to transport the listener into a futuristic Los Angeles, sampling the film in chronological order using all available sound effects but no dialogue (a bit like watching the film without anyone talking).
Also on this disc is Vangelis’ unused music for the film. A highlight is the combining of “Longing” with “Empty Streets”. These tracks were actually one long track originally but the Blade Runner Trilogy producers split it up into 2 tracks for some reason (maybe to use the opening part as an intro to the disc). In usual ‘Esper’ style all these unused tracks mix beautifully into each other to create an enjoyable suite.
To close the disc off there are a selection of bonus tracks.
- “Tears in Rain” is featured without the Roy Batty monologue and has better sound quality than any other release that contains this version.
- “Gail Laughton’s “Pompei 75 A.D.” is taken from the album “Harps of the Ancient Temples”. Here is the album version of “Bicycle Riders”.
- Brain Eno and David Byrne’s controversial “Qu’Ran” is used in the Workprint as ‘temp’ music instead of “Salome’s Dance” (Vangelis hadn’t written music for that scene at the time). The intro to this track can also be heard in the Final Cut.
- “The Ink Spots’ “If I Didn’t Care” was used in the original trailer but was replaced by Vangelis’ “One More Kiss, Dear” for the film. If you listen carefully at the beginning of the movie when we first see Deckard an extract of “If I Didn’t Care” can also be heard.
- “Ogi No Mato” is presented in its entirety (the first for any Blade Runner release) and is the Japanese Woman’s Blimp song, played at various times throughout the movie.
DISC 5: Esper ‘Interpretations’ DJ Mix
Disc 5 is where it starts to get that little bit different. The disc contains a DJ mix by Esper Productions that uses remixes by other artists who have either remixed one of the many Blade Runner themes or have sampled the film’s dialogue and/or effects. To make it extra special and exclusive the Esper team played about with 2 tracks and created unique versions of the Future Sound of London’s “My Kingdom” and Cosmic Baby’s “L.A. 2018”.
DISC 6: DVD-ROM
Finally when you eventually get to disc 6 you will find interpretations and remixes by other artists that were influenced by the film, sampling Blade Runner’s distinctive dialogue and effects. This disc is intended for use with a PC. There are over 150 tracks in total that took Esper Productions many years to compile.
I cannot possibly list all 150+ tracks here, but I can state that other than just remixes the disc does include the Workprint version of “Tears in Rain” along with 4 Blade Runner trailers.
All tracks are available in MP3 format but there are quite a few in WAVE format as well for all the people who prefer lossless, uncompressed music. Esper Productions tried to collect the highest possible bit rate and sound quality of MP3 possible.
Since the film’s initial release in 1982, the now legendary Blade Runner score by Vangelis Papathanassiou has become one of the most talked about scores of all time. The ‘Retirement Edition’ is the ultimate Blade Runner score, professionally mixed in a recording studio to give you, the listener, the best sound quality and mix of music possible.
STATEMENT FROM (THE REAL) ESPER PRODUCTIONS
In light of the sheer amount of “Esper” discs (i.e. “Esper Edition” and L.A‚ 2019) being sold on the internet over the past few years and with the emergence of new bootlegs claiming to be “Esper Productions‚” we wanted to take this opportunity to officially clarify that any vendor claiming to be‚ or selling on behalf of “Esper Productions” has absolutely nothing to do with the original people involved. These rip-off merchants have quite simply‚ stolen our “label.”
The “Esper Edition” was made by two Vangelis/BR fans. Both of us would like to remain anonymous for obvious reasons. The intention of this private release was to give “our take” or interpretation of what the Blade Runner soundtrack should be. -that’s it.- The fact that these bootleggers have appropriated the discs and label name and started selling them on various websites‚ ebay‚ etc‚ is indeed regrettable. We’re totally against the idea of lucrative gain being derived from these kinds of fan projects. Moreover‚ let me further clarify that neither of us have ever made a single cent off this effort.
We made a total of ten original copies: five for each of us. We then distributed them to friends in the Vangelis circle. Among them‚ is Antas who has been gracious enough to let us publish this note on his site. Why only ten? It was always meant to be a homemade project.
Since‚ the “Esper Edition” has surprisingly become “stuff of legend” in many Blade Runner circles‚ mentioned on many webpages all over the internet. While secretly very flattered- we’d also like to take this moment to “de-mystify” the release.
Why did we make it? Basically‚ we were sick of so many BR bootlegs floating around that never “got it right” in terms of chronology‚ or thoroughness. They all had something unique to them‚ but there were always oversights. So‚ like taking pieces from a puzzle‚ we decided to simply “cut and paste” from all the exiting releases (official‚ bootlegs‚ private releases‚ etc)‚ 1982 video‚ 1992 directors cut and construct something fresh. We paid close attention to chronologically follow the sequences from the film. Although not agreeing at first‚ we finally decided it would be best to have the tracks flow into one another‚ as a sort of BR suite. We originally wanted to make the discs just for our enjoyment‚ but we thought it would be neat to come up with artwork and make it a “private release” for our friends. That’s all.
As for the follow-up‚ “L.A. 2019‚” we wanted to make an “ambience” cd that transported the listener to the world of Blade Runner. The sound effects are almost entirely from the BR game‚ with Vangelis stuff layered in the back. We inserted “Reve” and an unused piece from “The Bounty” as well‚ because they both fitted the mood very well.
Why the name “Esper Productions?” We thought a logo of the Esper machine would make an original pseudo trademark. Hence the name.
Lastly‚ let us stress that our intention was always to make this a project by fans for fans. It was created out of love for Vangelis’ music‚ not money. Having said this‚ if other fans want to further the “Esper” concept by adding‚ re-editing or using our “work” to get a different result‚ that’s fine -provided that they do not use the name “Esper Productions‚” which has been ripped-off just to cash-in