Josh Rouse 1972

An Introduction to Josh Rouse

Josh Rouse is a Nebraskan born singer-songwriter, and is the 49th artist to be covered on Aphoristic Album Reviews. Rouse’s thoughtful songs are in the wrong era to find a mass audience, while his fondness for pop hooks and straightforward sensibilities don’t win him friends at Pitchfork. So Rouse is stuck in musical limbo, too clever for the mainstream but too white bread for hipsters, and he’s limited to fans of heartfelt, catchy song writing.While Rouse made his debut in 1998 with Dressed Up Like Nebraska, he has an ability to deliver joyful pieces of 1970’s derived AM Gold pop. Here’s an overview of his career in five songs:

From his 1998 debut Dressed Up Like Nebraska, ‘Flair’ is representative of his more introspective early Indie-folk albums:

From his 2003 album 1972, ‘Comeback (Light Therapy) is a love song to the sun:

From 2005’s Nashville, ‘Winter From The Hamptons’ shows Rouse’s influence from The Smiths, one of his favourite bands when he was growing up:

Also from Nashville, ‘Sad Eyes’ is a contemplative piano ballad that really takes off in its second half:

In 2006, Rouse relocated to Spain, and his subsequent albums are often lighter and airier. ‘It Looks Like Love’ from 2006’s Subtítulo sounds like an effortless 1970’s radio hit with a some Spanish influence:

For reviews of Rouse’s individual albums, please visit


  1. 2005’s Nashville is actually my favourite; I think his five albums gradually get better and better. I like 2013’s The Happiness Waltz quite a lot as well.


  2. Dressed up like Nebraska, fantastic title – I hear you about him not being enough for one crowd but too much of something for another.
    A lot of quality artists likely find themselves in such a predicament

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: