Rob Benny’s New EP Is An Intimate View From The Rooftop

Rob Benny

Rob Benny’s debut solo EP, “From the Rooftop” is an intimate and personal three song collection. Without directly addressing the global pandemic, the record resonates as a testament to the battle with isolation we are all fighting. That struggle is no more real than in the singer/songwriter‘s hometown of New York City. It is a point driven home by his choice of album artwork. It’s a beautiful skyline shot of the greatest city on Earth, presumably taken from his rooftop.

The arrangement on the record is simple and elegant. Each song features the artist’s voice, alone with his piano and guitar. Benny spent several years performing in local cover and original bands in a variety of clubs and halls throughout the Tri-State area. His skill and experience is obvious on this recording. Throughout the set, the multi-instrumentalist performance is smooth and tasteful. He’s got the chops. I particularly like the occasional lead acoustic guitar riffs. His playing is melodic and emotional. It injects an occasional classical feel into his otherwise Alt-Folk/Americana vibe.

Lyrically, “From the Rooftop” tells three tales of the loneliness inherent to troubled relationships, each from different perspectives. Although the lyrics do not specifically call out the COVID-19 crisis, its effect can be felt in the mood of these songs. It is as though an unspoken analogy exists between the anguish of his personal woes and the pain we are all feeling right now. For instance, “Start Again” is a song of regret and remorse. It’s a personal story, but the emotion is universal when Rob sings, “Take back my life, and start again.”

“Endearment” looks at similar emotions from another’s perspective. The singer observes someone he loves experiencing a hard time and offers a helping hand. His deep personal connection to these lyrics is inescapable as he reassures, “As you open your eyes, I’ll be here. As you look down inside, I’ll be here.”

Vocally Rob Benny reminds me a bit of a mellow Ian Anderson. That’s not to say that this music resembles the Prog-Rock of Jethro Tull. But there is something about the timbre of his voice that triggers the connection for me.

The record ends with “In My Veins.” Benny cleverly interweaves images of addiction and illness as analogies of obsessive love. The song also makes the only direct (if subtle) reference to the coronavirus with the line, “Bring the cure, the medicine I need. Move me to your I.C.U., act before I bleed.” It is a beautiful, sad song as well as a crafty bit of wordplay.

Rob Benny’s “From the Rooftop” is available at bandcamp. Check it out below, and follow the links to connect with Rob on all of his socials. Stay in the loop on all of his current and future projects.

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