Joe Deninzon is a fiddle player. He had his first chance to back a major artist on the violin at age 16. Dude was working with serious musicians when he was 16. What were you doing when you were 16? Trying to get Mindy to kiss you after the football game? Hoping Charlie’s older brother would come through with a twelver of Natty Ice? Joe was working with musicians, doing his thing, so you know he’s even better now that he’s got a few decades under his belt. “Stratospheerius” finds this guy in the middle of a P-Funk inspired physchojazz trip, full of instrumentals and even a few covers by Stevie Wonder and Wayne Shorter. Our man Joe plays the six-string-electric violin as well as the more traditional acoustic. He also sings on a few of the tracks.
There are times during a few of the longer joints (eight-plus minutes) when the whole thing sounds like a “Herbie the Lovebug” soundtrack gone awry, but for the most part, Joe’s on point and the album moves briskly with his decidedly quick tempo. This isn’t rock. This isn’t punk. It’s not emo or metal or rap. It’s something else and it’s not going to appeal to a lot of you but it’s still pretty cool. And besides, Mindy never liked you anyway.