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Confidence

Spouse
PIGEON/NINE MILE

From his Northampton, Mass., outpost, José Ayerve, singer, guitarist and ringleader of Spouse, is building a house, and the mortar is durable pop. Confidence finds Ayerve backed by an arsenal of friends and frequent collaborators (New Radiant Storm King drummer J.J. O’Connell among them) and picking up where Relocation Tactics left off. Ayerve’s scratchy vocals recall better-than-late-era Paul Westerberg, and they’re strengthened by gut-level ruminations on the bright side of perseverance and originality (“No Sudden Moves”). He’s smart to vary his pop indulgences (the keys on “What You’re Feeling”) with wry humorous jabs (“Keep Being You”). The interest continues to build after “59.” Sung in Spanish, it unfolds as light as a Mediterranean breeze, while “Underwater” and the elegiac “9.19.05” are poignancy put to sound.