Commissioned by the Crash Ensemble (with funds from the Arts Council of Ireland) to honor their birthday and by Carnegie Hall for The Knights
I can easily declare that this piece does exactly what the title on the tin says. It is full to the brim with canons and other playful polyphonic conceits that coalesce into webs of overtones. There is a play between equal-temperament and an overtone-based harmony, between melody and a texture created by the piling of melodies on top of each other. In the latter instance, the sense of “fusing” into a texture is helped along by all the notes turning into overtones of one fundamental, blurring the distinction between timbre and harmony. Canons and Overtones was written to mark the twentieth birthday of Dublin’s joyful Crash Ensemble. It is co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall for The Knights.
— Donnacha Dennehy