Exposé Online banner

Joe Deninzon & Stratospheerius — Live Wires
(D-Zone 822207043938, 2004, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2005-09-01

Live Wires Cover art

Count me as a supporter of the proposition that the world needs more hot electric violinists playing jazz-rock fusion. Jean-Luc Ponty has moved on to other things, and someone has to take up the cause. Joe Deninzon is a credible candidate. His playing is fluid, though with more grit to his tone than Ponty. He also has a bit more of the blues in his style. As for the material, Deninzon is definitely funkier than Ponty ever was, and also throws in some Middle Eastern touches to keep things interesting. He takes advantage of electronic devices to alter the sound of his instrument (echoes, distortion, etc.), sometimes building up a wall of crazed noise before cutting it off and getting back to the funk. The rhythm section of Ron Baron (bass) and Luciana Padmore (drums) keep the proceedings moving along, though haters of finger-popping on the bass will find occasional fault. Deninzon’s foil in the lead role is the electric guitar of Jake Ezra (or Alex Skolnick on a couple of tracks). Deninzon’s singing is perhaps not the equal of his violin playing, though not bad enough to detract too much from the instrumental fire. A spirited cover of Zappa’s “Magic Fingers” is the best vocal tune. Another non-original track, a wild take on the theme from The Simpsons, is a lot fun. Luckily the vocal parts are only a temporary distraction from the fiery instrumental majority. And in spite of the high level of technique, I’m never overwhelmed with ostentatious wankery.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 32, 2004 releases

Related artist(s): Stratospheerius (Joe Deninzon)

Latest news

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more

2020-01-15
Carlos Alvarado RIP – Carlos Alvarado, pioneering composer, multi-instrumentalist and pioneer of progressive rock and electronic experimental music in Mexico, passed away January 14th, 2020 at age 68 after a two year battle with cancer.  » Read more

2020-01-12
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more

2020-01-12
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

The Muffins - Chronometers – A strange release at first glance. One CD, 70 plus minutes, 21 tracks, one track is 23 minutes long. Hmmm. This is a compilation of outtakes and general weirdness from 1975. The Muffins are often...  (1993) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues