88.2kHz/24-bit FLAC*, Mons Records MR 874571 (supplied by www.highresaudio.com)

This début album by Croatian-born but German-resident singer ?a?ija features what could only be described as an eclectic mix of music, from hip-hop influences to standards (some of them recorded live), but with one major unifying factor: the star, here front and centre before a band of anonymous musicians, has a damn fine set of pipes on him. He can cruise through Mingus’s ‘Strollin’’ with consummate ease, slam out the self-arranged ‘No Church In The Wild’ (which credits writers from Kanye West to Phil Manzanera and James Brown), and whip up the audience at the North Sea Jazz Festival with his take on ‘Lush Life’, one of three live tracks closing the album. He’s served well by recordings (again uncredited) fully able to reveal his timbres and techniques, to make a fine showcase for what is clearly a highly impressive voice and some great musicianship. AE

Sound Quality: 80%

Hi-Fi News Lab Report

All tracks present as 88.2kHz but this download is still a mixed bag: tracks 1, 4, 5 and 8 have a strong spurious tone [green trace] at 15.6kHz (flyback from a CRT monitor?) while live tracks 10-13 are upsamples from 44.1kHz [see Graph]. PM