The Spectacular Now is about Sutter Keely (Miles Teller), a high school senior and effortless charmer, and of how he unexpectedly falls in love with “the good girl” Aimee Finecky (Shailene Woodley). Written by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber (500 Days of Summer) it is described as “a vivid, three-dimensional portrait of youth confronting the thrilling and perilous business od modern love and adulthood” – whimsy in other words. And the soundtrack full of tracks composed by Rob Simonsen is a whimsical journey of mellow loveliness.
Simonsen says that apart from the main characters’ theme the album shied away from motifs “it was much more of an ambient approach, just trying to get the vibe right and set a mood”. Simonsen worked on 500 days in a collaborative partnership and the feeling of this score is very much in that vein. Apart from the first track “My name is Sutter Keely” , which is a Sergeant Pepper soundalike the rest of the score is mellow and interesting; if you like Arcade Fire I think this will appeal to you. He used lots of alternative and interesting instruments to create the sounds and it really works in its richness; the multi-layered feel wraps you up and makes you feel calm and day dreamy.
The final 3 tracks on the album are songs with the standout being “Wakin’ on a Pretty Day” by Kurt Vile which is a great indie rock ballad with a crazy long guitar solo.