Robert Caruso


Robert Caruso is a singer-songwriter-guitarist-multi-instrumentalist based in London, UK. He started in Italy in his early teens as Rob Leer (& The Electric Kids). From the beginning he performed original material, rooted in the Blues, ’50s Rock ‘n Roll, ’60s classics like The Velvet Underground, The Stooges, The Rolling Stones, The Yardbirds, The Doors and Jimi Hendrix, and Punk Rock acts like Johnny Thunders, Ramones and Sex Pistols. Starting from his hometown of Cosenza in South Italy, he moved first to Rome and then to London. He toured all over Italy and his early material is now collected on the album Rob Leer & The Electric Kids.

Jumping ahead to catch up on his work, he released the album Three Minutes To Midnight in 2016 and has two singles out now, neither of which are on that very good album which features a cover of “Puss’N Boots” if you’re familiar with such classic punk titles. Speaking of which, Robert Caruso is an interesting European artist to say the least for those who know his work or want to look into what he’s done in the past and who he’s played with. But if you’re going to do that, just be prepared for the illustrious ups and downs of the typical and unique sort. As it has been a long journey but he’s making current strides as he pushes forward. His two new singles are “Burn Baby Burn” and “Real Cool Cat” which could not contrast one another more than they do. And the first one almost plays like a prelude to the second track which comes out a lot busier in its overall delivery. But it still somehow doesn’t top the simplicity of the former, making them both carry the goods. But one could easily choose either as the hotter pick of the two. But for my two cents worth they wind up even in every aspect he’s bringing to the songs which is why they never compete, but rather complement each other as separate singles with much going for them.

This leaves no room for further comparison, as they’re really nothing alike besides the fact that they’re his own originals. And although he is inspired by some of the best all time punk rockers, he takes inflection of their work with him, rather than copying his heroes. This can instantly be spotted on “Burn Baby Burn” which is a title used before, and an idea that isn’t exactly new but is given a fresh spin. He repeats the title enough times to make it stick, without overdoing it. But that contagious hook really is the whole appeal of the track, with an accompanying video that doesn’t leave a lot to write home about.

But that is rectified in the video for “Real Cool Cat” but the track itself doesn’t surpass it any, leaving them pretty-consistently even. But it depends on your needs for what either song has. I just found each of them making up for what the other might lack and vice versa. Just pointing out that even with a less quality produced clip, the scenery in this one makes for the nicer viewing. If video deceives, headphones always help and so does turning the picture off to get the music the way it should be heard. Too many hear with their eyes since the video age, so, make sure to listen to what you also see, because Robert Caruso deserves to be heard as well as seen.


Elvin Graham