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06 Apr 05

i’m under josh rouse’s charms

josh rouse is good. very good.

his world tour swung by lee’s palace last night, and they impressed me. a lot. before arriving, i wasn’t really sure if lee’s was the best venue for him – i was expecting to find a half empty room, ’cause really, who knows josh rouse? in reality though, the promoters knew best and lee’s was pretty packed with an odd mix of oldies (whose last concert experience might have been winona or cher, or perhaps fred eaglesmith), and 20- or 30-something indie types. words can’t do the dancing justice, but just imagine shoulder swaying, head tossing and bouncing…all at the same time. yeah, yikes.

amy correia was on stage when we arrived, and she wasn’t for me. i’m not generally a fan of females on stage by themselves with a guitar, and i really couldn’t get into her. anne described her voice accurately as bonnie raitt-esque, and that, to me, isn’t particularly complimentary. regardless, her set wasn’t overly long, so i made it through.

josh and band took the stage around 10:45 and they wowed me right away. they opened with it’s the nighttime from his newest album, nashville, and went on to put on a fantastic 1.5 hour set. i was expecting mostly new songs, but they surprised me with a 1979-heavy set (with a few new ones as well as some blasts from the past), including: my love has gone, sad eyes, winter in the hamptons, love vibration, sunshine, james, slaveship, comeback, under your charms, miracle, dressed up like nebraska, and lots others that i forget. many of the performances were true to the album versions, but they changed the arrangements on comeback (my favourite of the evening), james and under your charms, all of which impressed me. i guess that’s really what set them apart in my mind from the bloc party’s show – they didn’t sound identical to the albums at all times, and showed that they could mix things up a bit while never declining in quality. his band is very tight, and although the stage banter was kept to a minimum, my attention was held for the entire set.

anne has a good description on her site that sums up the evening nicely:
if you’ve never heard josh rouse, imagine the feeling of a summer road trip with a good friend, windows down, hot air blowing your hair around and feeling utterly content.

i couldn’t have put it any better. fantastic.

One Response to “i’m under josh rouse’s charms”

  1. 1
    pager Says:

    oh, and i forgot to mention that they brought howie beck on stage for a song early in their set. pretty cool.

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Pronunciation: 'ch&mp
Function: noun
Etymology: perhaps blend of chunk and lump
Date: 1883

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