By Michael J. Warren
Alejandra Ribera has an amazing album on her hands, although she apparently has had it in her hands for a couple years now. Now that it’s finally been released, the world has become a slightly better place — or perhaps she has simply taken the better things the world has to offer and synthesized them into one near perfect set of recordings.
Performed in English, Spanish and French, La Boca cohesively unifies elements of Ribera’s international influences. From the bagpipes of “Goodnight Persephone” to the bevy of latin percussion on “No Me Sigas” to the second line swing of “Bad Again,” the album amalgamates brilliantly. With a voice reminiscent of a low-register Leela James, and often compared to Björk, the accompanied arrangements from producer Jean Massicotte allow room for Ribera’s every breath.
While the slow slide guitar-driven rendition of the Pretenders’ “500 Miles” is a little too sleepy for my tastes, the sonically similar but much more dynamic “St. Augustine” takes the listener on a hauntingly enjoyable journey. “I Want” is the stand out single, and it suggests that Ribera will continue the tradition of Feist and Serena Ryder in creating a new and unique pop niche. La Boca is a remarkable record, and now is the right time for it.
Link – http://exclaim.ca/Reviews/SoulFunkAndWorld/alejandra_ribera-la_boca