The follow-up to Josh Rouse
's acclaimed debut is even more promising than its predecessor: for the five-song Chester
sought out lyrics from the great Kurt Wagner
, the mastermind behind Nashville freakshow Lambchop
, and the result is a gorgeously understated record that plays beautifully to the strengths of both artists. Despite the seeming schism between the two, Rouse
's bright, chiming songs fit Wagner
's darkly surreal vignettes like a glove, at times (as on the superb opener, "Something You Could Always Tell") even co-opting Lambchop
's orchestral touches to stunning effect; here's hoping a full-length collaboration is in their future.