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ClassicsOnline Home » DENNEHY, D.: Stainless Staining / Reservoir (Moore)
You really need to get to know this composer
You really need to get to know this composer. I first became familiar with Irish composer Donnacha Dennehy with his stunning Nonesuch release Grá Agus Bás featuring Dawn Upshaw. I felt at the time that his was a fascinating and important new voice in contemporary music and from a country that, frankly, has not been known as a hotbed for contemporary classical music.
This new EP or mini-CD of two of Dennehy's piano works confirms this opinion in my mind. Stainless Staining is written for piano and "soundtrack" wherein the soundtrack is a sampled series of piano sounds (keyboard and interior) focusing around the pedal G#. There is a throbbing and pulsing quality to the music that rides a line between minimalism and new age and yet defies description. This is, all in all, a captivating piece that nearly defies description. There is propulsive nature that I found quite attractive and the persistence of G# will remind some of the very earliest of minimal trends, in a good way.
Reservoir makes a similarly strong impression. Dennehy explains that the feel of the piece was inspired by a video by artist Bill Viola of a man slowly being submerged in water. There is definitely a gradual "submersion" of sonorities that occurs in this work. The piano writing goes from some triadic eight notes in the mid to upper register of the keyboard and, as the piece progresses, the writing gets lower and "muddier" through increased use of the sustain pedal. This is another very interesting work that makes me want to hear more of Dennehy's music - what I have heard so far is wholly impressive.
Pianist Lisa Moore plays very well in these works that are only somewhat technical but which require the greatest of sensitivities. Strongly recommended!more....
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DENNEHY, D.: Stainless Staining / Reservoir (Moore...