Song of the Day #4,500: ‘Rise’ – Josh Rouse

I discovered Josh Rouse after the release of his 2005 album Nashville, a record I count among one of my all-time top ten. I quickly gobbled up his previous four albums, all great, and especially loved 1972.

Titled after Rouse’s birth year (and mine), 1972 blends sounds and styles of the 70s with Rouse’s alt-pop sensibility, dabbling in a little Carole King here, a little Marvin Gaye there. Though it’s a concept album in the strictest sense, it doesn’t feel fussed over. He’s too good a songwriter for it to feel anything but authentic.

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Song of the Day #3,222: ‘Rise’ – Selena Gomez

‘Rise,’ the final track on Selena Gomez’s quite-good 2015 album Revival, commits one of my cardinal musical skins — the spoken-word interlude.

It serves as a bookend to the album’s opening moments, also spoken by Gomez, so I see what they were going for. But I can’t think of a song by anyone, ever, where that has worked for me.

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