Reviewer: Dominic Reilly for Dublinjazz.ie, Dec 2016
Aleka is a native Romania. Based in Dublin she represents all that is good about the musical melting pot that Dublin has become over the last 10 years. She came here to study jazz performance in The Newark Music School and brought with her influences from her Romanian background.
Aleka the self-named EP represents her first musical recording. It contains four tracks, two original and two covers.
Breeze is a track with a South American feel. Aleka displays a wonderful clarity to her vocals in this song and her voice sounds lyrical if not contained and disciplined while at the same time allowing her fellow musicians time and space to explore the music.
Her version of Nick Drake’s haunting River Man took a little time to grow on me. However once again the pureness of Aleka’s voice won me over. It is a very simple yet direct approach to delivering the sentiment of the tune. Chris Guilfoyle’s subtle and calm playing create an under layer for Aleka to sing over.
Samah is a song Aleka wrote in response to the increasing plight of refugees all over the world. Once again there is a nod to Latin rhythms but Aleka scats freely in the earlier part of the tune before herself and her musicians engage in free improvisation.
The EP concludes with a song from a Romanian film called ‘Parasutistii’. The track is just called Song. In it Aleka blends her skill on the Cello with a wonderful interplay between voice and cello.
The whole EP is an opportunity for the listener to experience the delicate tones of Aleka’s voice which are pure and true. She is perfectly supported by the notable guitar playing of Chris Guilfoyle, Kevin Higgins on Bass and Brendan Doherty on Drums. After listening to this EP I look forward, with much anticipation, to seeing a more complete work from Aleka.
Alex’s EP is available from: //aleka.bandcamp.com/releases