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November 5, 2014

There are so many reasons to love Nérija.

Fresh out of South London, Nérija is an all-female jazz group, formed of a group of young women who met while part of Tomorrow’s Warriors. Taken from the Hebrew name ‘Nerijah’, which means ‘lamp (or light) of God’ Nérija seeks to focus on the concept of a light with divine power. The three tracks the band have up on Soundcloud are all completely different, but show a beautifully congruent picture of a band who are tight, beautifully harmonious and excellent musicians.

Musically, they’re so completely in tune with each other, that their music makes for a really easy listen. Redamancy (which means the act of loving and being loved in return) is warm, soothing and easy to listen to. The theme is musically satisfying and challenging at the same time – a perfect combination in Jazz. Nubya Garcia gives a beautiful solo on the tenor saxophone, which increases in intensity in a really controlled but sensual way. It leaves you wanting more.

Into The Blue is a little darker with a groovy bassline, but suddenly becomes a sort of swing number.. Having said that, it still encompasses that which I love about Nérija, their beautiful harmonies and cohesiveness. Throughout the track it builds up to an intense climax after which it drops and builds again and finishes on beautifully delicate vocals as the band sing out the track. This is my favourite part.

Valleys is upbeat and as a fan of jazz guitar I love the instrumental at the beginning. Guitarist Shirley Tetteh is so beautifully in-tune with her instrument that she is gentle and in complete control of her instrument. The track takes on a tropical nature as it goes on, reminding me a little of Sonny Rollins and picnics, not that the two should be interlinked. Trombonist Rosie Turton’s solo is perfect on this track, the ease at which she journeys through the form is wonderful to listen to. Its such an energising track.

Enough chat. If you haven’t heard them already, sort it out.



From → Jazz, Music

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