The Mediterranean Gardener, the debut release from Isla – acclaimed singer/songwriter Josh Rouse‘s new solo project – is streaming on all digital platforms today!
Released first as a Bandcamp exclusive, the digital-only, nine-track album is filled with gorgeous, chilled-out electronica, providing a refreshing musical tonic for these stressful times. Recorded mainly at his small studio near his Valencia, Spain home, Rouse created the instrumentally oriented set during the confines of 2020 relying on keyboards and Roland Cloud samples.
“[It’s] a stress-free atmosphere with breezy, improvised electronica. I was really just looking for vibes that were soothing. I didn’t want anything that was aggressive.”Josh Rouse
From the eerie Eno-like ambient opener of “Buenas Noches Baby” to the Brazilian chords and melodies of the Jobim-esque “Color De Vida,” the album is an alluring mix of lyric and instrumental tunes that meld together so smoothly that they feel more like a whole piece of music rather than a collection of songs. Realizing the music was far from the guitar-based, storytelling style for which he’s known, Rouse felt it needed its own name and Isla was born.
Rouse was joined on the recording by frequent collaborator Daniel Tashian, who plays keyboards and Linn drums on “12 Bars,” which he co-wrote. The album was mixed by longtime producer Brad Jones and mastered by Mike Westbrook. The distinctive album cover was designed by Rouse’s wife, artist/singer Paz Suay, who also provided backing vocals on “12 Bars” and “It’s Not Too Far.”Tags: Isla, Josh Rouse, New Release, The Mediterranean Gardener