10 Songs, 43 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

If singer-songwriter Josh Rouse had actually been releasing records back in 1972, he would’ve been an AM powerhouse. His easily digestible melodies, his warm, soothing croon, and the tasteful, lightly colored arrangements would slot alongside the best of Carole King (whom he namechecks in the title track), Bread, and the Carpenters. This being 30-something years later, Rouse has to settle for critical acclaim and smaller, respectful audiences who can appreciate a well-crafted album. But let’s play along and pretend it is 1972 and these are massive hits. Certainly the jaunty orchestration of “Love Vibration” and the easeful flow of “Comeback (Light Therapy)” with its flirty flute would be dance party favorites. You can practically hear the shag carpet, the faux wood paneled walls, and the scratch of corduroy moving to the beat. Fans of Damien Rice, Ray LaMontagne, David Gray, Joe Pernice and other stylish, introspective songwriters should easily fall under the spell of ballads such as “Under Your Charms” and “Sparrow Over Birmingham” where nighttime’s solitary mystery reflects with each aching beat.

EDITORS’ NOTES

If singer-songwriter Josh Rouse had actually been releasing records back in 1972, he would’ve been an AM powerhouse. His easily digestible melodies, his warm, soothing croon, and the tasteful, lightly colored arrangements would slot alongside the best of Carole King (whom he namechecks in the title track), Bread, and the Carpenters. This being 30-something years later, Rouse has to settle for critical acclaim and smaller, respectful audiences who can appreciate a well-crafted album. But let’s play along and pretend it is 1972 and these are massive hits. Certainly the jaunty orchestration of “Love Vibration” and the easeful flow of “Comeback (Light Therapy)” with its flirty flute would be dance party favorites. You can practically hear the shag carpet, the faux wood paneled walls, and the scratch of corduroy moving to the beat. Fans of Damien Rice, Ray LaMontagne, David Gray, Joe Pernice and other stylish, introspective songwriters should easily fall under the spell of ballads such as “Under Your Charms” and “Sparrow Over Birmingham” where nighttime’s solitary mystery reflects with each aching beat.

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