Music composed by Brian Tyler
Label: Lions Gate Records - Silva Screen Records
Catalog: SILCD1339

Release Date: 10-Aug-2010

1. The Expendables*
2. Aerial
3. Ravens And Skulls
4. Lee And Lacy
5. Massive
6. The Gulf Of Aden
7. Lifeline
8. Confession
9. Royal Rumble
10. Scanning The Enemy
11. The Contact
12. Surveillance
13. Warriors
14. Trinity
15. Waterboard
16. Losing His Mind
17. Take Your Money
18. Giant With A Shotgun
19. Time To Leave
20. Mayhem And Finale

*Sound Clips

Total Time: 71:49

Reviewed by
Tom Hoover

For some reason, Sylvester Stallone insists on transporting us back to the 80's. While Rocky Balboa certainly provided a fitting, belated ending to the Rocky series, Stallone's over-the-top John Rambo bordered on the preposterous. We traverse more toward the latter with the latest offering, The Expendables, as a who's who of tough guys have been assembled to give us one more ride down macho lane. Joining that roster, all be it behind the scenes, is a composer who knows how to throw a punch or two with his music and that would be Brian Tyler.

As the composer of choice for Stallone these days, it's no surprise that Tyler's music is reminiscent of what Jerry Goldsmith delivered for the action star. That said, there is a bit more ferocity, in general, from Tyler's music as it steamrolls from start to finish with music that would make any Expendable proud. Indeed, the amount of energy that this score contains is quite staggering, even by Brian Tyler's standards. But that's far from being a bad thing.

When you dive into this score, be prepared for a fully coherent, high-energy assault that will be sure to snap you out of any doldrums you might be in. Tyler ensures that the Expendables crew is well represented with heroism and brawn without making the experience feel tired or old (though playing to Stallone's age might have been an interesting concept). Whether you are an action music fan or not, there is no denying that there is a spark within the notes and that the music is very much alive.

Throughout the flurry of action material that is delivered, Tyler gives us a main theme to return to that will place the listener back in the 80's through its shape of melody. I look at this both as a homage and a functioning element that distinguishes this score. It's one thing to create a main theme that imitates a certain brand but this one hardly feels forced. Tyler's theme is genuine in what it is trying to accomplish here and I truly dig this retro/modern fusion.

Ultimately, whether The Expendables film goes on to reach the type of monetary success that will justify it as a success is unknown at this time, I do appreciate Sly's ambition to pursue doing what he loves at his age. I also think he and Brian make a good tandem and this high-octane score is a great example of that.

An action fan's delight, Brian Tyler gives us an invigorating listening experience with his music for The Expendables, a score that takes charge from the outset and never relinquishes its momentum.