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Stainless Staining

Released: 07/31/12





Lisa Moore

Stainless Staining


  1. Stainless Staining
  2. Reservoir


"[Lisa Moore is] the best kind of contemporary classical musician, one so fearsomely game that she inspires composers to offer her their most wildly unplayable ideas. She can play them all." - Pitchfork

Pianist Lisa Moore completes her 3-EP series (Seven, Lightning Slingers and Dead Ringers with Stainless Staining, featuring compositions by Irish composer, Donnacha Dennehy.

Commissioned by Lisa Moore with funds provided by the Arts Council of Ireland, the title track, Stainless Staining was written for piano and soundtrack. The soundtrack is made up of samples of a piano (played both normally, and ?inside?) retuned to provide a massive harmonic spectrum of 100 overtones based on a fundamental low G#. Explains the composer, "This reflects an increasing recent concern of mine with a kind of pulsating, rhythmic use of the overtone series. That concern can range from a rather extreme concentration in this piece and Bulb ( a piano trio where pulsing glissandos connect nodes in the harmonic series) to a more integrated approach in the large scale vocal and instrumental pieces, where that approach is used often in a looser fashion only in particular areas."

Reservoir is a work for solo piano, written in two parts - the second part reflecting upon the first - was inspired by a Bill Viola video in which a man is gradually submerged in water. Though not intended, Dennehy's piece draws a similarity with the video; an oppositional relationship between the first and second halves of the work and that between being above or under water. The sustaining quality of the second half could feel as if it were underwater, a reservoir of collected resonances, amplified by the use of the sustain pedal.

Donnacha Dennehy is the founder of Dublin's renowned new music group, Crash Ensemble. He was recently appointed a Global Scholar at Princeton University and received rave reviews for his 2011 recording Gra Agus Bas.


NPR Music's Heavy Rotation
"At Q2 Music, we're obsessed with Stainless Staining, the title track of former Bang on a Can pianist Lisa Moore's latest EP. Written for Moore by Irish composer Donnacha Dennehy, the piece is equal parts texture and propulsion. It pairs her solo piano performance with a soundtrack of recorded and manipulated samples taken from a piano re-tuned to produce exactly 100 pulsating overtones. Like standing in an endless hallway of grandfather clocks, the music alternately conjures feelings of anxiety and ecstatic hypnosis. It's an addictive and seamless blend of woman and tape that pendulums between bouts of active and passive listening and marks one of Moore's strongest, most inspired performances to date." - Hannis Brown, Q2 Music

Lucid Culture: A Hypnotic, Contemplative New Release
"Pianist Lisa Moore has recorded an absolutely lovely new diptych by Donnacha Dennehy...The first part is absolutely hypnotic, very Steve Reich, with perfectly precise, insistently Bach-worthy pedal point interspersed with samples that gradually blend together with ringing microtones...The concluding chapter in Moore's three-ep cycle for Cantaloupe, it's something that'll appeal to the Philip Glass crowd as well as anyone who gravitates toward contemplative, atmospherically intriguing music."

Q2: Music Album of the Week
"Equal parts texture and pulse, and built on hypnotic rhythmic repetitions, the music pendulums between active and passive listening...Headiness and allegory aside, the music on Stainless Staining constitutes an accessible and compelling EP. Packed with subtleties that become increasingly apparent with each repeated listen, it's a fitting and memorable close to a trilogy that illuminates the multidimensional virtuosity of Moore's playing."

Gapplegate Classical-Modern Review
"Lisa Moore plays her role perfectly and the music buzzes and swings its way through your head with irresistible drive and elan. It's a disk that will be finding its way onto my player many times in the future I am sure. In its own way it has a perfection. It is a kind of heaven! Would you require more than that?" - Grego Applegate Edwards