When she unexpectedly burst into the local scene with self released debut EP „Days of Innocence“ in late 2012., both the fans and critics were caught off guard and immediately swept off their feet by her acoustic indie folk songs. In just a matter of weeks, without a single press release or any kind of PR strategy, relying only on the quality of those 4 songs almost secretly put on the Internet for the people to stumble upon, Irena became the most talked about Croatian singer-songwriter of her generation. Obviously, the bar has been set very high and expectations for her next release were enormous. Therefore Irena took enough time to work on her new songs and make sure they are done to perfection. After spending several months in the studio (and a cabin as well) her debut album „Travelling“ was released on September 30, 2014. on her own label – Cuckoo. And yet again, the fans and critics alike were stunned. The quality of the album have managed to surpass even the highest expectations. Reviewers were raving about her amazing voice and songwriting skills proclaiming the album as a main contender for the best album of the year. After only a few months those predicitions became reality as there was hardly a „best of 2014“ list in which „Travelling“ didn't either won the title or came pretty close. Probably the biggest recognition came from the Balkan edition of Rolling Stone when they put „Travelling“ at 4th place of the best regional album of the last 20 years!!! Such was the amount of unanimous admiration of Irena's art that „Travelling“ is considered by many to be one of the best (if not the best) singer-songwriter album in the Croatian history. Naturally it was the time to present the album on numerous live shows in the region. From the sold out (350 capacity) album release show in her hometown Zagreb (something unheard of before that for a local singer-songwriter singing in English) to Waves Vienna festival in Austria, from noisey bars to regional festival circuit. Surely one of the highlights was an invitiation to perform with an orchestra on annual Christmas gala at Croatian national theatre alongside a few selected most popular regional artists.
When you combine Irena's beautiful voice, amazing melodies and incredible warmth of her songs with touching lyrics inspired by innocence of the childhood, love and...life, it is easy to understand her ability to deeply touch the hearts and souls of many. Although melancholic at times, her music is also uplifting and healing. And if you find yourself with a teary eyes, it is more likely those will be the tears of happiness than sadness.