Friday, January 28, 2011

Orphaned Land-Norra el Norra

I've been following the news a bit more than usual this past week and the more I read/see the less I understand. It just seems so surreal to me what's going on in Tunisia, Lebanon and Egypt and with the additional warnings of neartime earthquakes and the whole political and military messes that are taking place it feels a bit like the world is going a bit crazy these days. In Lebanon's case it's not really surprising but that's not really helpful. I just feel a bit foggy because I don't think I fully understand what's going on and what effect it has. It's just so easy to get absorbed with school stuff and get disconnected from the news. Usually, it's a pretty okay thing and not that bad but now that I'm connected again I feel like I have to catch up on what I missed. It's also very wierd that something big is happening in the middle east that doesn't directly have anything to do with us. Anyways, this week there was an Orphaned Land (pronounced Ofen Land) concert and I thought of maybe going but then I realized that this is the only song I really like, as well as their quiet Mabool songs, and it's not even from their latest album. I couldn't make it anyway but I'm not sure I would've gone if I could although my friends had a blast. I really love this song, but their other songs aren't all my cup of tea so for me it's enough to watch this at home and not spend my night dodging fogos. I sound so old, but it's true. Orphaned Land have earned the very well respected title of being the only Israeli band to attract a huge number of fans of all religions- even Muslims and Arabs. There even was a news item about them not long ago about their huge popularity in Turkey. I love the fact that people don't care about political issues as long as it's good music- and it is. But it's even more than that because Orphaned do incorporate the hebrew part of themselves, much much more than other Israeli bands. They made an entire concept album on the great flood using Hebrew texts including this song which is also called Entering the Ark. According to Wikipedia, The album Mabool tells the story of three sons (Angels) of the seventh (in the mythology the number seven refers to God). The seventh was divided into three, representing the divide of the Abrahamic religion into three main streams: Judaism, Islam and Christianity.

Each angel was given a power and representation. The first angel is Judaism, he is represented by a Star of David and his power is magic. The second angel is Islam, he is represented by a half of moon and his power was his strength. The third angel is Christianity, he is represented by the cross and his power is his wisdom.
God had forbid the angels from reuniting because of fear of their strength. Ignoring the divine order, the angels united into one angel, who immediately got exiled from heaven to earth and was divided into three again, sentenced to fight each other until they can prove themselves and get back into heaven.
The angels then try to convince humanity to stop their sins and warn them of a coming flood as punishment if they do not. The album describes the journey of the three, their convincing, and in the end, their failure.

Sounds like a pretty heavy concept album but it works. To see Arabs and Christians headbanging to biblical texts seems surreal but then again seeing Jews doing it feels even more. I don't really know why but it just felt right to return to this song today. Especially during these days when it feels like we could all use a flood (as depressing as it may seem). Or we could ignore all this heavy stuff and just rock-that's not too bad of an option.

Nora El Nora, the lord of courage,

Return to me my lord, men my wounds,
my soul is yearning, and in valor we wait.

Nora I sing to thee, hymn of praise,
to you I give my life and faith

Through all time, mighty Nora,
Deliver us the progeny of Abraham,

Offspring of greatness,
you are the living God,
Giver of Torah.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Moshav: Follow you up

Maybe it's just the name but these guys remind me of weekends and summers at a certain Moshav in the middle of nowhere and I really miss it. Anyways a true gem of a song by a band I'm really glad I discovered :)

Friday, January 14, 2011

Izhar Ashdot & Rona Kenan-A Moment

A perfect duet between two artists who really seem to enjoy performing together. I love how their voices harmonize with each other in this simple and lovely song about meeting an old lover and the familiar feeling of frozen time. I really love both of these singers-especially Rona Kenan-it seems that everything she touches turns to gold.

How does it happen each time again
I run into you like a blind person, in the middle of the street
I'm sorry, you're just so familiar
to someone I once knew from up close

A moment and time will stand still
Freezing in the reflection
Of a shop window
And like a fragment of memory,
You were suddenly in me
We talked about nothing
and about love.

You have the same blue northern glance
The same smile hiding
an angle of embarrassment
The same transparent face
The same movement of the ankle
Crushing the cigarette
On the sidewalk

A moment and time will stand still

Friday, January 7, 2011

Umlala - Floor Dolls

I really don't like it when plans suddenly change. Sometimes it turns out for the best but usually it's just annoying. I was supposed to see these guys in concert, but unfortunately it didn't work out-for reasons beyond my control. Oh well, hopefully some other time.