[pe65]Sotto Voce
[pe64]Noiseboat
[pe63]Luv Rokambo
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[pe62]Bad Girls
Unauthorized Recordings
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Window Music
[pe44]Naturaliste
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[pe41]Yu Nishibori & Landon Thorpe
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Rob DeNunzio - Window Music
CD-R (San Francisco, CA)



-drive-by pt. 1
-otter
-sunday song
-toll
-tinroof
-tumbler
-midnight song
-no clue/no roots (am radio edit)
-sociable gamblers
-fog & raccoons
-falling down blues
-monday song
-tired song
-drive-by pt. 2




Reviews:
(Vital Weekly no. 318) Rob Denunzio is a guitarist whom I never heard of, probably my mistake. Upon starting the disc, you think you come across some soundscape artist who drops a microphone out of the window (keeping the title in mind), but it turns out that Rob plays solo guitar. No overdubs, no sound effects. It's just electric guitar, that has country & western influences, bluegrass, hillbilly. It's not the kind of music that often finds it way to my CD player (save for some Jim O'Rourke or John Fahey). Maybe in some way it's infuenced by Fahey, but I'm not the expert here. Just as I fancy Jim and John every once in a while, I enjoyed playing this one. It's not the kind of music I wish to hear all day, everyday, but a small dose every now and then is great. -Frans de Waard

(All Music Guide) Disconcerting to say the least; Window Music features Rob Denunzio playing guitar solos at the window (we hear the outside world for a few seconds at the beginning of {&³Drive-by, Pt. 1²}). Nothing extraordinary, you¹ll say. Where things get unconventional is in the ³styles² department. Denunzio shifts from classically-tinged acoustic guitar exercises to steel-string bluegrass, nylon string soft jazz and free improv. In the course of a little over 50 minutes, figures as diverse as Leo Kottke, Anthony Phillips, B.B. King , John Fahey and Derek Bailey take turns in the listener¹s mind. What is most striking is the fact that at the end of the day, this eclecticism makes sense. Window Music possesses an identity, it creates a warm, comfy atmosphere. If the guitarist feels at home in every idiom, it may not be the same for the listener. Nevertheless, this CD-R contains many shining moments: the straight-ahead blues of ³Falling Down Blues; the Phillips/Gordon Giltrap stylings of Midnight Song; the freeform Fog & Raccoons.² Understand that this is not an experimental album. When Denunzio chooses a style he sticks to it -- no avant-gardist liberties or crossover ambitions allowed. It should have made the shifts between pieces all the more clash-like and yet the CD remains surprisingly soothing. A strange discovery. - François Couture

(I Am Cancer) again a slew of new releases from the fantastic public eyesore label. a bit of a departure is this cdr of country and blues instrumental twang. and i am not complaining! this is one fantastic release the other day someone told me its the nobodys of the world, the people you overlook who make some incredible music. this is true of the public eyesore label. mr. day seems to seek out some incredible talent, home-recording phenomena, or maybe i am just not with it, which could easily be the case. but with every release its a new human making some incredible sound. rob denunzio hands out 14 tracks of steel guitar lullabies, falling alseep dreams of folk and blues. truly lovely in everyway. skipping sounds and field recordings might be heard in the far distance. comparisons with the obvious fahey, or even will simmons. but i really am no good at these reviews. just make sure you check out eyesore, and pick up some cds cheap. its not gonna hurt to send a few bucks in the mail. - Chris Fischer

(Indieville 11/24/2002) Many are probably already aware of the Public Eyesore label's output, which falls mainly under the experimental banner. From avant-garde guitar compositions to electronic glitch tapestries, it isn't at all unreasonable to predict that Rob Denunzio's most recent effort would be more of the same. But then you'd be wrong. Hahahahahah! So, then, what is on this beautifully packaged CDR? Well, it seems to be a collection of fittingly beautiful solo guitar compositions. Instrumental in nature, they are sparse, twangy pieces that sample a whole panoply of influences; you've got warm guitar blues on one piece, and then moody country on the next, and folk on yet another. And the most striking aspect of it all is that Dununzio can not only play the different styles fantastically well, but he also seems to have his own ideas to offer to each of the genres, incorporating his own interesting concepts into the music. It's a musical smorgasbord, people! Hahahahahah! So, then, since every album has it's faults - what is wrong with Window Music? Well, not much. While more superficial listeners may be scared off by the subtlety of the compositions, which are often sparse and characterized by short pauses in sound, those with patience will likely find this to be a very rewarding work. And who cares about superficial listeners, anyway? Hahahahahah! An important aspect of Denunzio's work is his compositional style. Take "Sociable Gamblers," for example. Starting off with a throbbing, deep bass sound and hushed guitar strumming, the track slowly plods along, producing an eerie, minor-key sound that Denunzio builds with his simple chord progression. Meanwhile, other songs utilize different techniques to produce various characteristic sounds, from happy and upbeat to dark and mysterious. It's f-in' terrific! Hahahahahah! Altogether, Window Music is a very well-done album. Though variety is key here, Denunzio's talent manages to tie all the songs together into a focused, unscattered album. Absolutely incredible. Hahahahahah! - Matt Shimmer

(Aural Innovations no. 23) Opening with the sound of traffic and airplanes overhead I had the impression that Window Music would be a sound collage album made up of field recordings. No sir. This is probably the most traditional styled album I've heard from the Public Eyesore label yet. Denunzio plays folk and Blues on the acoustic guitar and when he lays on the slide the sound is close to the Fahey/Kottke realm. But though Denunzio is an expressive player and there's lots of pleasant and enjoyable music here, it is often slow moving, lacks fluidity, and seems to be searching for some direction. But there are tracks which indicate that Denunzio is a decent player, and can do so with passion. "No Clue/No Roots" is a standout track with a traditional finger picking Blues style that I thoroughly enjoyed. Ditto for "Falling Down Blues". "Fog & Raccoons" is another track I enjoyed that features some very nice soloing and for 8 minutes Denunzio segues through a variety of well connected themes. This would be a strong set if all the tracks on the album were as inspired as these. Sometimes I find myself questioning Denunzio's proficiency with his instrument and whether or not he's really awake while playing, and then he turns around and wows me. An inconsistent album but the strong moments are very good. - Jerry Kranitz

(Komakino) Rob DeNunzio with his Window Music (14tx cd, about 5o minutes, PE 'o0) plays His own thing, a solo Thing, - just electric or acoustic guitar, skilled, mixing folk, blues influences, experimental soundscapes to drive You in a desert: - a full ball in the sky called 'sun' is burning all the clouds: fall alseep, just sounds and silence. - Paolo Miceli

(Ampersand Etcetera 2002_10) A Saturday evening, and the picture of a steel guitar on the cover suggested that this would be a suitable album – and it was. These solo pieces are tuneful and restrained, probably improvised but around a structured melodic objective, with an ease supplied by the mix of blues, country and bluegrass. 'Drive-by pt.1 and Pt.2' open and close the set symmetrically: street noises (heard through the window) provide the brackets, with some picking leading into/coming from the rest of the album. We then cover a range of moods, within a fairly closed system. 'Otter', 'Tumbler' and 'No clue/no roots' are country slide pieces, tumbler being faster; then there is the slow contemplative slide and playing heard on 'Sunday song', 'Midnight song' or the sinuous 'Tired song'. Melodic folky lines run through 'Toll' while 'Tinroof' has a bluegrass response to the sound of rain on the roof. A lower, dark progression fuels the 'Sociable gamblers', 'Falling down blues' is fast and loose strung and a melody is picked out in 'Tired song'. 'Fog and Raccoons' is the longest track of the 52 minutes and starts out sounding quite classical and then shifts through a range of styles. This album highlights again the breadth of the Public Eyesore experience – an enjoyable restrained and varied acoustic guitar set, amongst the punk improv and noise. Easy listening without being disposable. Light up the fire, get out the wine, relax. - Jeremy Keens

(Splendid 8/7/2002) I admit, I was nonplussed when I stuck this disc in the player and heard the noise of street traffic for the first minute. I'm as experiment-friendly as the next guy, but I'd heard one-too-many "environmental" recordings of late, and wasn't looking forward to focusing my attention on another. Imagine my relief, then, when I discovered that the sound was simply evocative, designed to heighten the idea that I was listening to Mr. Denunzio picking and grinning from an upstairs window. As the dulcet tones of the quiet, blues-slide "Otter" tickled my timpanics, I was relieved, and then very pleased. Denunzio is a quite talented guitarist, and his instrumental musings, though more structured than many in the genre, are neither cloying nor demanding. This is music that invites you in, evoking the blues, country, folk, and even more modern harmonics without trying to out-smart or -reference the listener. The tracks I found the most pleasing tended to be the shorter outings -- songs like "Tinroof", which made their points and hitched a ride out on the next passing freight. The album's two centerpieces, "Fog and Raccoons" and "Falling Down Blues", are both very successful in their own right, though at points I could feel Denunzio luxuriating a bit too much in their extended lengths. Quiet, breezy, sun-dappled afternoon music this is, and it's on the market just in time. - Brett McCallon

(Broken Face no. 14) One of the basic forms of musical expression with seemingly endless sonic possibilities is one man alone with his guitar. The relatively unknown American electric guitarist Rob Denunzio's new album for the Public Eyesore imprint manages to explore the possibilities successfully with a sound that is complicated and simple at the same time. Occasionally he is getting a bit too lost in the noodling, but the experimental sound world(which includes no overdubs or sound effects) is carefully wrapped in an old map of meditative aspects covering the fertile lands of American musical history. As you listen it'll become clear that Denunzio draws heavily from traditional country and hillbilly music. It's just that the way he chooses to present his guitar explorations initially might suggest so, but the more you listen the more traditional this will sound to you. Wind Music sounds like someone quietly watching the figures of the night taking over a street in a particularly crummy part of town. As he's staring from his window you can hear the quiet tones of John Fahey and Lorren MazzaCane Connors playing in the background. It's a sad, haunting, beautiful scene. - Mats Gustafsson

(Improvijazzation Nation no. 59) This is (believe it or not) our first listen to Rob's extremely interesting and different improvised guitar works. The CD came to us in a thick stack of releases from the "Public Eyesore" label. There is a lot of "open" space on each of the songs... Denunzio knows how to use the space well, & the listener will find themselves attracted (in many passages) because of the gap... it puts one in a very relaxed state of mind, & readies you for being inspired. He has a full-bodied touch on his strings that I really dig, no weak-minded strumming here. Rob uses jazz/blues chords most effectively, even in th' middle of a folk-sounding piece like track 5, "tinroof"... he's also got some strange sounds (like pebbles being dropped across - what else - a TIN ROOF) that enhance the listen. Lovers of improvised/creative music everywhere will agree, without doubt, when I declare this to be HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. If your ears are tuned (only) to the "norm", you will find this may make you uncomfortable... but readers of THIS 'zine are prob'ly more inclined to be looking for something new, anyway. - Rotcod Zzaj


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