yom sheni 88.
(photo credit: )
Levontin 7, Tel Aviv
Ever since I first started thinking about aliya, I've been wishing I'd been born a few years earlier. I want to be a real 'halutza,' rather than another IDT employee, or Ulpan Etzion graduate living in the German Colony. Listening to the first few chords of Yom Sheni Ha'aharon shel October's opening offering at Tel Aviv's funky Levontin 7 on Monday night, I found myself thinking a similar thing, but for a different reason - music. Is the age of live music over?
Instead of some one hundred people showing up, this gig should have been packed. Whether it was a promotional failure, a reflection of the poor state of the alternative rock music scene in Israel, or a sad product of the Wii generation, it was, quite simply, a shame. I felt that even another fifty people in the small, well-air conditioned but admittedly smoky room could have pushed the atmosphere to the level it deserved.
Nonetheless, the Jerusalem-based band kept the always-bouncing crowd constantly entertained with its urgent, Soundgarden-esque Hebrew tunes and its deep, climbing instrumentals often reminiscent of early Radiohead. The two male, one female vocal harmonies belted out by the lead singer, the guitarist and the bassist were almost pitch-perfect, at times leaving the audience in an almost beautiful aural pain - very Rock 'n' Roll, really.
At the risk of sinking into band name-dropping, Yom Sheni's music is at times punk-rocky like Weezer, with a classic rock influence obvious in the guitar solos, which build and drop with a decidedly Led Zeppelin flair. Their encore piece featured a dynamic drum solo which almost jumped right into Chemical Brothers territory, and the surprisingly loud roar for a second encore showed off the crowd's appreciation.
The band's cover of Iggy Pop's 'I Wanna Be Your Dog,' translated into the Holy Tongue no less, could have lasted fully ten minutes, as one fan enthused after the show.
Simply put, these guys are good, and the crowd that graces Yom Sheni's next performance should be a lot bigger than the group of Jerusalemites that turned up last night. Their first single, 'Haneum,' is out now. Check it out on MySpace and get thee to their next gig.