Saturday, October 31, 2015

TREE - Travel Light

Whoa. TREE just released the first clip from their second album and it's not at all how I expected it to be- which is a great compliment. I love how animators Glendon & Isabella have a signature style but make sure to adapt themselves to whoever they're working with (see Haya Miller and Radiotrip's colorful clip for comparison). TREE have certainly climbed up musically and also lyrically, but I think I'll always have a special place in my heart for their debut album which remains fresh and energetic after four years.

Travel light no weight to my baggage
Just arrived then I'll be moving on
On my way

Driving slow no reasons to hurry
Time moves on you catch just what you can
And think of what you didn't

Fading in the sunlight
Washed out to the sea
Always in the middle
Pouring down like raindrops
I can hardly see
Always seems to be that way with me

Changing fast we're not getting younger
That's the youngest we will ever be
You said to me

And that our lives are tied with a burden
That we're hoping
Someday we'll be free
But know, it makes no difference

Fading in the sunlight...

Saturday, October 24, 2015

David Beinart - I Returned to the Beginning

What a sweet and uplifting song, like a warm bowl of homemade chicken soup. David Beinart is the chef and owner of the South Tel Aviv restaurant and cultural home Ala Rampa (where this video was shot) who always wanted to be a singer. He notes the irony that a song about giving up on his dreams is the one he chose for his first single as "it is another expression of the combination of contradictions in the melody and text: complexity and simplicity, despair and optimism" (press release). I could watch a whole movie about Beinart and wish him the best of luck in his culinary and musical careers!

I don't have anything to fear anymore
Of what will be tomorrow
I'm already old and ready to retire
There are many insights, on how time is precious
When the rope is on the neck
Hanging all hopes

I went far, far away
I got closer and closer
I looked deep, deep inside
And I returned to the beginning

I was on a rainy day
I swam naked in the sea
And in the hot summer sun I searched for shade for comfort
I made myself a family
So joy will not be missed
And so not to miss anything
I stopped being a singer

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Malox, Echo & Tito, Uri Brauner Kinrot - Gaza Trip

I didn't have the chance to post a song this past week partly due to a busy after-the-holidays schedule and partly because with everything that's been going on it's been difficult to sort out and express my feelings. I mainly had to get used to a new but familiar companion who constantly followed me on my daily transit and errands (because life has to go on and all that) that goes by the name of Fear. On some days, I was able to ignore it but on others, especially after a gruesome attack, it was more difficult to continue as if everything was normal. If I wasn't scrolling through news alerts on the phone, I was glancing at people in the street and passengers on the bus with me wondering if we'll all be in some shared tragedy on the news. I also found myself being overly nice to the Arab workers at H&M and McDonalds because they're probably just as worried as I am. The guys over at Promised Podcast did a great job of explaining how this week felt in Israel and also analyzed how the political parties are reacting to the terror.
The new season of Indie City Jerusalem is in full swing with new videos being uploaded each week, serving as a wonderful break from the news and violence. Some videos are better than others, but all of them show the beauty and complexity of life in Jerusalem. This video featuring Malox, Echo & Tito, and Uri Brauner Kinrot, was filmed just a few weeks before the violence heightened in Jerusalem. Besides being an amazing song, it brings to mind two of my favorite Indie City videos from last season: Echo & Tito in the Machne Yehuda market and Yemen Blues in the Old City. The latter is especially touching and also heartbreaking as in the video it's the younger generation who are the first to make a step forward and dance to the music yet these days they are at the center of the violence with most of the attacks being made by young Arabs under the age of 18. As I'm writing this, I'm being notified of another knife attack in Hebron, in addition to two attempted attacks earlier in the day in Kiryat Arba and Jerusalem. And it's just noon.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Ze Lo Hashuv - A Star Called Sun

A heavy morning after a bloody weekend, which started with the brutal murder of Eitam and Na'ama Henkin while driving with their children in the West Bank and ended with two shootings in Jerusalem's Old City, leaving 2 dead and 3 wounded. While we've become used to terror attacks, there's been a shift in the air with a dreaded uncertainty of how things will continue from here.

When I first read the lyrics for this song, I felt that it could have been written here and now. The only hint to a translation are the words "white snow and grey ice". I was struck by how piercing the lyrics are and with the video I couldn't help but think of the Henkins' last ride, which left a very chilling feeling. But the car in the video can also be referring to the one Victor Tsoi was driving when he tragically died at 28 in 1990. Tsoi wrote the lyrics to this song, as part of his hugely popular Soviet rock band Kino, famous for its Western post-rock sound and messages of freedom . As this clip by Ze Lo Hashuv ("It's not important" in Hebrew) shows, Tsoi's words are still very relevant today and with their pure honesty continue to touch the hearts of many listeners.

White snow and grey ice, on cracked rocky terrain
Covered with a patchwork quilt, a city with a loop in the road.

And above the city clouds are floating, hiding the divine light.
And above the city yellow smoke, a city two thousand years old
Which lived under the light of a star called the Sun.

And there's a war over two thousand years, a war without an excuse and reason
The war is, for the young, a medicine against wrinkles

Red, red is the blood, after an hour, it's again earth.
After two hours there are grass and flowers, after three, it's alive again
Receiving heat from the light of a star called the Sun.

Yes it is known that this is how it always was, that fate wants the one,
Who obeys other laws and those who die young.

I don't remember the words yes and no, don't remember the ranks and names
Just reach to the stars, and don't think that it's a dream,
And then fall, burned from the light of a star called the Sun

*The translation here aims to be a direct translation from the Hebrew version. An English translation from the Russian original can be found here, with the original song.