Crash Ensemble is Ireland’s leading new music ensemble; a group of world-class musicians who play the most adventurous, ground-breaking music of today.
Crash Ensemble, an Irish new-music collective with international cachet and considerable chops. -The Washington Post
Founded in 1997 by composer Donnacha Dennehy, some of the most distinctive living composers have written for the group, including Terry Riley, David Lang, Michael Gordon, Louis Andriessen, Arnold Dreyblatt, Kevin Volans, Glen Branca, Nico Muhly and Gerald Barry.
Many well-known artists from diverse musical backgrounds have performed with the ensemble; Gavin Friday, Dawn Upshaw, Julie Feeney, Lisa Hannigan, Íarla Ó Lionáird (The Gloaming), Bryce Dessner (The National), Richard Reed Parry (Arcade Fire), Sam Amidon and Beth Orton.
Crash have recordings on NMC, Cantaloupe, Nonesuch and the Bedroom Community labels.
As well as performing throughout Ireland, Crash regularly perform internationally, with appearances in the last few years at the Edinburgh International Festival, The Royal Opera House (London), The Barbican (London), Carnegie Hall (NYC) The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (Washington DC), Virginia Tech (Virginia), GAIDA Festival (Lithuania) and residencies at The Huddersfield Contemporary Music festival (UK) and Princeton University (NJ).
Crash Ensemble are adventurous, innovative and ambitious.
Irish violinist Darragh Morgan has collaborated with many leading composers including Arvo Part, Michael Nyman, Sir John Tavener, Gavin Bryars, Kevin Volans and Michael Finnissy. He has made concerto appearances with the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, Ulster Orchestra, RTE Concert Orchestra, KZN Philharmonic South Africa, Koln Kammer Orkest, Istanbul Symphony Orchestra and Cyprus Chamber Orchestra. International festival appearances include Wien Modern, Bang on a Can Marathon New York, Lucerne Festival, BBC Proms Chamber Music, Aldeburgh, Spitalfields and Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival.
He is a member of the Fidelio Trio with whom has appeared at the Wigmore Hall, Shanghai Oriental Arts Centre, Casa da Musica Porto and Symphony Space New York and was previously violinist with The Smith Quartet with whom he made an acclaimed recording of Philip Glass' complete string quartets. Darragh has recorded over 25 CDs for labels including NMC, Naxos, Delphian, Mode, Black Box and Nimbus. He has appeared as guest leader of Ensemble Modern, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, London Sinfonietta, Musik Fabrik and Remix Ensemble, and performed with the Bang on a Can All Stars. Darragh is professor of violin and chamber music at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, and the Guildhall School of Music & Drama.
Dennehy has written, “There is a whiff of high-class vandalism about my work” – an opinion borne out by this disc, which collects works from his early, uproarious Junk Box Fraud - for two increasingly smutty vocalists and strident ensemble – and pAt, for piano and taped "shipping forecast" – to the recent lyrical violin concerto, Elastic Harmonic, with soloist Darragh Morgan.
"Giddy, visceral urban techno avant-gardism" Gramophone
"The performances are fresh, furious and frenetic ... The essence of his [Dennehy's] style embraces obvious aspects of minimalism – feisty and explosive in the crazed electro-acoustic idiom of Junk Box Fraud ... mesmerising and liquid in the newest work featured, Dennehy's 2005 Elastic Harmonic for violin and orchestra." Scotsman
"Dennehy likes to imbue his pieces with an urban energy and drive them with the punchy impact of a rock band. He also likes and air of derangement, as if to suggest both a breaching of conventional boundaries and Jean Tinguely-like disintegration" Irish Times
‘The performances are all topnotch … Koleva and MacGregor are both outstanding in precision and vitality.’ Fanfare
'This is the collection of early works that marked Dennehy's arrival as a composer, marrying downtown attitude, classical discipline and surreal humour.' Gramophone
Contemporary Music Centre, Ireland
Glamour Sleeper was recorded in Illingen, Germany in May 2003.
Recorded by SAARLÄNDISCHER RUNDFUNK Saarbrücken.
Producer: WOLFGANG KORB for for Saarländischer Rundfunk.
Editor: MARKO CICILIANI
Paddy was recorded in Harlem, The Netherlands in 2003.
Engineer: GUIDO TICHELMAN
Producer: RUTGER VAN OTTERLOO
Junk Box Fraud was recorded at Pulse Studios, Dublin in 2000, and Streetwalker at Westland Studios, Dublin in 2004.
Producer: DONNACHA DENNEHY
Editors KIERAN LYNCH and DONNACHA DENNEHY
Elastic Harmonic was recorded in the National Concert Hall, Dublin on 30 January 2007.
Engineer: ANTON TIMONEY
Producer: DONNACHA DENNEHY
Supported by RTÉ
pAt was recorded at RTÉ Studios, Dublin in 2001, with the kind assistance of Lyric FM.
Producer & editor: DONNACHA DENNEHY
Executive Producer: COLIN MATTHEWS
Cover photo: SOPHIE ELBRICK DENNEHY
Design: FRANCOIS HALL
Elastic Harmonic (P) 2007 RTÉ
Glamour Sleeper (P) 2007 SAARLÄNDISCHER RUNDFUNK Saarbrücken.
All other works (P) 2007 NMC Recordings Ltd.