It was while at university that she formed the Elina Duni Quartet with pianist Colin Vallon, bassist Patrice Moret, and drummer Norbert Pfammatter. She recorded Baresha, her debut album with the group, in 2007; it was issued in 2008 by Meta Records. Its meld of root sources and modern jazz met with favorable reviews throughout Europe. In 2010 she followed it up for the same label with Lume Lume, which was much more oriented toward blues and jazz standards, though it did contains some folk songs.
Due to her association with Vallon, she garnered the attention of ECM's founder, Manfred Eicher, who signed her. Her debut for the label, Matanë Malit (Beyond the Mountain), featured numerous traditional songs of obscure and modern origin. She arranged the set to tell the story of Albania, its people and history, and the troubles that have enveloped it since the fall of communism. Matanë Malit appeared in the fall of 2012. ~ Thom Jurek, Rovi