EL TURISTA – JOSH ROUSE
It does sound a bit weird: what’s a guy from Nebraska doing, using Brazilian grooves and orchestration á la Tom Jobim, to sing songs in Spanish? Having lived in Valencia for a good part of the last decade, Josh Rouse has been soaking up the Spanish sun for long enough (and enjoying an affair with Brazilian tunes since 2003), to feel confident enough to take the risk. El Turista proves that the gamble paid off. From syncopated songs like ‘Duerme’ to the hints of Os Novos Baianos in the guitars of ‘Las Voces’, the Brazilian inspirations work well. There is another kind of visit to the Americas with homage to the late Cuban musician Bola de Nieve on ‘Mesie Julian’, with great Fender Rhodes solos. Big, beautiful orchestration also gives a lush, hazy feel to the album, like having a sangria on a warm Sunday afternoon.