Army of Two -The Devil’s Cartel- Original Soundtrack

Album Title:
Army of Two -The Devil’s Cartel- Original Soundtrack
Record Label:
Electronic Arts
Catalog No.:
Release Date:
March 26, 2013
Download at iTunes


Even though Brian Tyler has only recently ventured into video game music, he has already worked on multiple blockbuster videogame franchises such as Call of Duty, Need For Speed, and Far Cry. Through most of his releases, he has brought big-budget Hollywood scoring to video games, while still keeping things quite fresh and exciting.  Last year, he went on to score Army of Two: The Devil’s Cartel for Visceral and EA. I thought he would be a great fit for a franchise well known for its blockbuster action sequences, but this time he sticks far too closely to Hollywood tradition without offering anything particularly fresh or exciting.


Right from the beginning of the soundtrack with the main theme, it’s evident that Tyler used string tremolo techniques similar to those that were used in Modern Warfare 3. The tempo, rhythm, and instrumentation here is exactly the same as what we’ve heard before. Joining the tremolo strings and heavy drums is a militaristic melody predictably played on brass. Sadly, the melody lacks structure, sounds generic, and is ultimately forgettable. The whole track is competently produced and worthy of a big-budget shooter. However, it lacks the audacity and ingenuity that characterises Tyler’s better scores.

The action tracks for the majority of the time are also competent, functional, but utterly unoriginal pieces. For instance, “Dust Unsettled” and “Rising” embody everything typical of a Hollywood action track with big brass leads, chuggering string riffs, and strong rhythmic thrust. They’re much better-produced than most Hollywood imitations, but their by-the-numbers orchestration means neither track has very little personality. The ethnic percussion work is excellent in the latter, bringing much propulsion and grit to the track. The reprise of the main theme in places also serves to pique one’s interest. However, it’s sad these features weren’t expanded upon and are ultimately dwarfed by the overbearing orchestration. Even the slow paced, suspenseful tracks like “Covert-Strike” are nothing special on their own and are only best experienced through gameplay due to their timid nature.

Not all the tracks are skippable here. Reminiscent of Ace Combat: Assault Horizon, the Spanish guitar work in the beginning of “Outskirts” and majority of “Isolation” bring a unique timbre to the soundtrack and work well in conjunction with the Hollywood orchestration. “Wide Awake” also brings some variety in the gameplay and album with its furiously-paced, horror-influenced string work, but sadly fails to expand on its ethnic percussion and vocals. “Raiding the Palace” is a pretty outstanding hybrid of electronic and orchestral features, and can even be fun to listen to outside the game. “Chronicle” not only has a memorable pace and melody, but also sounds more distinctive than the average Hollywood theme. A quality that most tracks don’t share. “Chronicle” is essentially a better version of the main theme, in which the melodic essence isn’t deafened by the fast-paced action scoring. A quality that most tracks don’t share. All of this isn’t enough to warrant a purchase for stand-alone listen.


This isn’t a bad soundtrack by any means. However, the bombastic action outweighs the emotional side of the score and thus there isn’t much variety for a stand-alone listen. It lacks the sweeping emotional quality of the Modern Warfare 3 score or the special worldly influences of Far Cry 3. Both of these scores also verged on generic, but they had enough originality and emotion that they satisfied on a stand-alone basis. The Devil’s Cartel, on the other hand, seems to have just been another gig for Tyler and the results simply aren’t special as a result. I would skip the full album, but a few individual tracks like “Chronicle” and “Isolation” could be worth checking out according to your tastes.

Army of Two -The Devil’s Cartel- Original Soundtrack Harris Iqbal

Do you agree with the review and score? Let us know in the comments below!


Posted on March 25, 2014 by Harris Iqbal. Last modified on March 25, 2014.

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About the Author

Lover of games and humble listener of music, not to mention A HUGE FAN. I love anything that has memorable melodies in it, or a good story to tell. Also... huge horror fan... HUGE! So, Silent Hill is the best Survival Horror game ever... NO DEBATE! Anyways, the previous version of this site was where I first got my writing start in 2009, with the help of Chris Greening. Now, with around 5 years of experience writing for various websites, I plan to give you some really kickass articles!

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