hadash disk 88 298.
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Heedoosh is the brainchild of Yahav and Yaniv Tsaidi, brothers who were born in Israel and grew up in North America. The elder brother, Yaniv, entered the music business first, fronting a successful Chicago-based wedding band and releasing two solo albums in the Hassidic pop subgenre. Yahav, in the meantime, dedicated his life to Torah study while also cultivating his skills as a songwriter.
In the late Nineties, the half-Morroccan, half-Yemenite Tsaidis began developing plans for a band called Heedoosh, which would, they conjectured, take the Jewish music world by storm by bringing together contemporary Western hard rock, progressive song structures and deeply introspective, theological lyrics.
The pair began collaborating with then-Jerusalem-based drummer Ari Leichtberg, who often played with Yaniv Tsaidi on his Israeli tours. Since the millennium, the Tsaidis, Leichtberg and others (including Mizrach guitarist Meir Weinberg) have all found themselves in New York. They formed Heedoosh and started setting up gigs - all while Yahav oversaw recording sessions with producer and bandmember Eli Massias.
As Heedoosh's producer, Massias took Yahav Tsaidi's compositions to another level. With the release of Meumkah Delibah, the Tsaidis' vision has come to fruition. The album merges deep, original Jewish verse with sounds reminiscent of Alice in Chains, Oasis, Radiohead and even Stone Temple Pilots.
In rabbinical teaching, a "heedoosh" refers to an altogether new concept that is capable of opening peoples' eyes and hearts, and this band truly lives up to its name. Not every track on the disc is amazing, but the strongest ones ("Etz Hayim," "Lev Tahor," "Bein Mayim L'Yayin," "The Purim Song") rank among the greatest and bravest rock songs ever to focus on Jewish themes. May Heedoosh's artistic success be met with equal measures of commercial success.
Boston area-based Yom Hadash has been playing Jewish community events for almost 10 years now, and the group's relatively recent One album showcases its strengths well.
One is marked by upbeat, indy-ish folk-rock that sounds contemporary. All of the songs on the disc - except for "Two of Us," a Beatles cover - are original compositions written by the two core bandmembers, brothers Jon and Josh Nelson. "Do it Again" is a fun, poppy rock song that uses slide acoustic guitar nicely. On the other hand, the original "Bo'i Kallah" and the prayer book's "Mi Chamocha" are presented as cheesy piano ballads.
Ben Jacobson can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.