Jules Shear

Between Us

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Between Us is a duets album teaming Shear with a veritable who's who of singer/songwriters, from veterans like Carole King and Rosanne Cash to new-breed performers like Paula Cole, Freedy Johnston, Ron Sexsmith, and Amy Rigby. Shear, who has never received proper credit for his distinctive vocal style, is in particularly good voice, blending perfectly with his partner on each song. In a low-key, "unplugged" setting, Shear and company sing tales of heartache and troubled relationships, with Shear's acute eye for detail and evocative lyrics capturing the wide range of feelings with odd turns of phrase that manage to express a certain universality while avoiding obvious clich├ęs. And despite the sparse, tasteful arrangements, the songs once again reveal Shear to be a rare master of melody -- these are some of his finest yet, and despite the subject matter, they're extremely catchy.

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