Song of the Day #584: ‘Women and Men’ – Josh Rouse

In 2002, with the release of his third full-length album, Under Cold Blue Stars, Josh Rouse the caterpillar became Josh Rouse the butterfly. While his first two albums established him as a solid pop-rock songwriter, they didn’t set him apart from the pack. Under Cold Blue Stars very much did.

This is a concept album loosely based on the lives of Rouse’s parents, or as he puts it in the production notes, “a Midwestern couple in the 1950s.” The songs don’t exactly tell a linear story but they touch on different moments in a relationship, from the giddy lovesick beginning through trials of infidelity and emotional and physical distance through to a comfortable, if not outright happy, finish.

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