As a film, The Equalizer had moments to enjoy, but its generic nature made it quite forgettable. Unfortunately the same can be said about Harry Gregson-Williams’ score; It has some great individual moments, but on the whole is quite generic and conventional, and what is also frustrating is that with some of his previous compositions the British composer has proved that he can produce far better.
Things do start off reasonably well; the opening track ‘Alone’ is a suitably brooding and moody piece and then ‘Change Your World’ features a beautiful piano riff and gentle background strings.
However it is after that that the entire score begins to become slightly generic, with all the tracks, though well put together, all sounding very similar. Gregson-Williams skilfully combines thudding synths and drums, moody guitar riffs and subtle string arrangements to create a brooding score that perfectly suits the film and works very well as background music, but never really captivates or involves when listened to in isolation.
All the tracks seem to merge into one, and though there is the occasional thudding synths and brooding string arrangement, they just never stand out. As is the norm with so many action blockbuster scores in the Hans Zimmer era there are constantly sudden bangs, thuds and all kinds of dramatic sounding noises, but sadly Gregson-Williams’ score lacks the rousing and emotionally involving string arrangements of Zimmer’s best scores. The epic 10 minute long ‘It’s All a Lie’ is a perfect example; it has some great moments in it, but these are held together with random industrial sounding noises.
The six and a half minute long titular closing track ‘The Equalizer’ makes sure things end on a high; it is a suitably pounding and dark track and ends with an excellent arrangement of sweeping strings. However, it still serves as a reminder that if Gregson-Williams had put more effort into his composition this could have been a truly epic and rousing score to listen to.
A score of inconsistencies; Harry Gregson-Williams’ score is a good listen, but never as truly involving as it could (and should) have been. Great moments of dark and moody synths, delicate piano riffs and sweeping strings are held together by generic bangs and thuds making all the tracks seemingly merge into one. It makes for good background music, but should have been better.