This is a track I contributed to Ridley Scott's amazing 2001 film 'Black Hawk Down' that Hans Zimmer scored so brilliantly. Though the film centers around actual events of American intervention in Somalia in 1993 that was in many ways very unsuccessful, the film is stylized in numerous ways.
This track, one of a few I did, was designed to move away from the core of the score and explore some new sonic worlds. This track accompanies the shooting down of a Black Hawk helicopter (and thus the film's title) and the immediate aftermath. The track is mainly electronic, and I think it has the distinction of being among the first ever film cues for a major film done 100% "in the box". In 2001 we were still using external samplers, effects and mixers. But this track was done entirely with plug-in synths, samples and effects. My first track done without a single wire! It pushed my computer of the time about as hard as it could take it. Now it probably could be done on my phone!
A lot of the drumming rhythms are actually done with an early version of Native Instruments' Absynth plug-in synth. A fave even back then, and still one of my regular 'go-to' instruments. The bass pattern was done in Reaktor, and the shrill and breathy ethnic flute is me playing a real Turkish ney flute and cranking the EQ to make it as piercing and unpleasant as possible. The director loved it while it often sent the producer of the film running out of the room!
Beyond the new flute, the only other acoustic element in the track comes as it builds to the climax just before the helicopter hits the ground (having been hit by a Somali RPG). An orchestra was brought in to improvise a large suite of aleatoric elements for the score. Those recordings were chopped and put into samplers - and I put them into a plug-in sampler in my DAW. The one used here is actually the orchestra playing some clusters, then flipped backward in the sampler. I sequenced the pitch wheel to make the tension grow.
It's not all that layered a track. Each sound is fairly complex, so there wasn't the need for a lot of discrete parts. I gave the scoring mixer each element separately in order to allow for a better mix. This version is straight from my computer.