DONNACHA DENNEHY (b.1970): Glamour Sleeper (ensemble Intégrales), Paddy (Tatiana Koleva [percussion]), Junk Box Fraud (Crash Ensemble), Elastic Harmonic (Darragh Morgan [violin], RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra; Gavin Maloney), pAt (Joanna MacGregor [piano with tape]), Streetwalker (Crash Ensemble).
Catalogue Number: 08J109
Description: Dublin-based composer Dennehy is in the vanguard of young British, and especially Irish, composers writing music with all the resources of the avant garde but with a youthful, urban sensibility which does not preclude, but rather, consciously embraces elements of contemporary popular music, club, DJ, electronica and so on. Utilizing small, often amplified, ensembles, electronics and recorded sounds, 'prepared' instruments and insistent rhythms, Dennehy writes music that is energetic and propulsive, infectiously upbeat and, well, fun. Rhythmically sophisticated, the ensemble pieces nonetheless maintain a dancing pulse, and while anything goes harmonically speaking, including noise with no harmonic intelligibility whatsoever, again there is a feeling of familiar consonance that render the music accessible to just about any listener. The 'odd piece out' in a way is Elastic Harmonic a sumptuous orchestral wash of sound over which a solo violin floats, obviously spun off from 'Romantic Minimalism'. With its combination of exuberance, energy and humor, this is a cutting-edge contemporary disc that anyone can enjoy.