To all the music junkies, this article will be a great for you. Since the trend nowadays is electronica and some real bass booming dubstep, all of this started in the 1980’s before it became today’s pop culture. Christopher Drake (composer of Batman: The Gotham Knights, Batman: Year One, Under The Red Hood) composed the music for Batman: The Dark Knight Returns Pt. 1 and Drake talks about what he decided to do differently for the music:
I told Bruce Timm (producer) and Jay Olivia (director), that I didn’t want to use any orchestral instruments and use only authentic 80’s era analog synthesizers in the beginning of the film to represent the decay of the city. As Batman returns I start to introduce some orchestral brass to signify the classical hero against the analog synth and modern decay.
I didn’t want it to sound like any of the previous Batman films we did. I spent a good month programming synths to dial in that authentic 80’s John Carpenter, Vangelis, Tangerine Dream sound. Bruce and I dabbled with this idea for Batman: Year One, as that also took place in the 80’s, but Bruce felt it might be too distracting for that story. Batman: Year One was a more intimate look into Gordon and Batman’s relationship, so the idea was to have the music play more ambient and minimalistic.
A lot of vintage analog synth gear was used, including the Sequential Circuits Prophet-V synthesizer, which was prominently featured in synth scores of the 80’s. The other big synth sound that defined the 80’s was the Yamaha CS-80, which is the Vangelis Blade Runner sound. Unfortunately that synth weighs about 200lbs, and now costs about $15-20,000, so I used a digital software emulation of that in the score. You’ll definitely hear a bit of homage here and there acknowledging the works of John Carpenter and Alan Howarth in the score – Escape From New York is one of my favorite movies! I took great pains to make sure the score sounded as authentic to the time period as possible.
I love John Carpenter’s music from the 80’s and I was purely happy with the overall music for Batman: The Dark Knight Pt. 1. It was really cool that the movie played so much into the 80’s feel. To see more of the interview go down below to the source link.
Source- World’s Finest