The soundtrack for James Ponsoldt's 2015 film The End of the Tour features an eclectic selection of '80s and '90s alt-rock songs alongside one of composer Danny Elfman's most minimalist scores to date. The film is based on David Lipsky's 2010 book Although of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself, and chronicles a five-day interview between the Rolling Stone journalist and acclaimed author David Foster Wallace that took place in 1996 following the publication of his epic novel Infinite Jest. Set against the film's wintry Midwestern landscape, Elfman delivers a resonant and highly textural score that seesaws between glacial dissonance and subtle, glimmering optimism. A mix of dense strings, elegant piano, and strange glassy overtones, it manages to convey a feeling of heft while remaining surprisingly light on its feet. Strewn between Elfman's cues are tracks by R.E.M., Brian Eno, Felt, Tindersticks, and others. The song selections are interesting in their thematic relation to the characters on the screen, but it's Elfman's lovely, understated score that really shines here.
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AllMusic Review by Timothy Monger
feat: Tracey Ullman
feat: Brian Eno