Aline Morales’ days of being Toronto’s best kept secret are over. Since her arrival in Canada in 2003, Brazilian-born Morales has been well known locally as a dynamic singer, percussionist and bandleader. However, it was release of her debut solo album, the stunning Flores, Tambores e Amores, that brought national attention to this unique artist, culminating in the recent Juno nomination for World Music Album of the Year. Released in 2011, Flores, Tambores e Amores was met with widespread critical acclaim, reaching #1 on Canada’s Folk/World charts and landing on several best of 2011 lists. David Dacks writes in the Grid, “Simply put, Aline Morales’ self-released Flores, Tambores e Amores may be the ﬁnest Brazilian album ever produced in Canada.” An ambitious and eclectic record, Flores defies easy classification. While rooted in classic Brazilian song styles, such as samba, forró, Northeastern folk music and 1960’s Tropicalia, Flores inhabits its own unique musical world, where traces of Italian film scores, African sounds, avant garde poetry and vintage synths ebb and flow throughout.
Flores represents a departure for Aline, whose previous projects have been centred around traditional Brazilian drumming. Born and raised in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, Aline began her performing career as a child training in capoeira, and by the time she reached her 20′s, she had performed in a variety of traditional and modern bands including one of Brazil’s most well-known maracatu groups, Nacao Estrela Brilhante do Recife led by Mestre Walter de Franca. Since her arrival in Toronto, Canada in 2003, she has been a tireless promoter of the traditional maracatu rhythms of Northeastern Brazil, performing with her 30-member percussion troupe, Baque de Bamba, at countless outdoor festivals, leading parades through Kensington Market in Toronto and even starring in Ontario Tourism’s “There’s No Place Like This” commercials.
Drawing now from a wider range of influences, Flores, Tambores e Amores finds Morales in a stage of musical exploration. Gone is the wall of percussion, replaced instead by lush, eclectic arrangements, which seamlessly blend traditional and modern instruments. At home in her new role as solo artist, Morales “shines with mature confidence amid [producer] David Arcus’ outstanding orchestrations.” (David Dacks, the Grid)