Idan Raichel stole the show this past year insofar as Israel's domestic music industry is concerned. It took just three days for his sophomore offering, "Out of the Depths," to secure gold status. Since the album's release in January, the 27-year-old musician's compositions have all but hijacked the radio waves with songs including "Milim Yafot Meeleh," "Mikol Haahavot," and the title track, "Mimamakim" ("Out of the Depths").
Also making an indelible mark this year were Metropolin ("Hazirim," "Malachim"), Dudy Levy ("David," "Moshiko"), Miri Mesika ("Lesham," "November," "Tip Tipa"), Mosh Ben Arie ("Hineh Hoo Ba," "At"), Ma Kashur? ("Tetnu Lo Chance"), Evyatar Banai ("Tacharut Klavim," "Matanot"), funset ("Bring it Out"), and Eurovision songstress Shiri Maimon ("Ahava Ktana," "Hasheket Shenishar").
Rapper Mook-e served up possibly the best hip hop album of the year with his Higher Trod (Okef Melemala) release. Singles off the album included "Elohim (Almighty)," "Okef Melemala (Higher Trod)" and "Shabak Musica (Shabak Music)."
Soft rock pianist-singer Daniel Solomon hit a tender note with his album, So Many Ways, which included the songs "Ahava," "So Many Ways" and "Metar Karua."
King of Mizrahi music, Eyal Golan, this year released Metzi'ut Aheret, his eighth album to date. Contemporary pop princess Roni added a half-album, Won't Stop, to this year's music roster. Hits included "Adoni" and "Motek II." And electronic-pop prince Ivri Lider hit record store shelves with his fourth album, It's Not the Same. Singles off the album included "Zachiti Le'ehov" and "Nisim." New "it" woman Efrat Gosh peppered the rock field with her eponymous debut. Most of Gosh's songs are of love and/or disappointment including "Tamid Kshe'ata Ba," "Ma Shekara" and "Bo Elay."
Also worth mentioning is Ronit Rolland, who while not mainstream, this year put her second solo offering, "Kol Ehad Vehaktayim Shelo," on record store shelves. With songs like "Zman Tov," "Sidni Ali," "Rega Ehad," and "Sus Adom," this 36-year-old guitar-wielding folk rock singer showed she can still compete with the younger "instant stars."
Sharon Haziz ("Ani Bishvili"), Liraz Cherhi ("Od Tzohorayim," "Al Tafsik"), Peter Roth ("Hee Ohevet"), Beit Habubot ("Sigapo") and Gilad Segev ("Yeled Boneh Armonot") also made splashes in the local music scene.
In addition to the aforementioned funset, the local English-language music scene was energized this year by the likes of Shy Nobelman ("Girlfriend"), The Genders ("Horatio"), Tamar Eisenman ("Da' Bitch"), My Second Surprise ("Perfect Cure," "Eyes on Me"), and Tsuky (Smoke & Mirrors).
We were introduced to yet another "star," this time around Kiryat Akron's Yehuda Sa'ado. Sa'ado's reworking of Shlomo Artzi's "Sadot Shel Irusim" has been overplayed on radio stations since his triumph in the finals of the A Star is Born TV song contest last month.
This coming year we're likely to hear a lot more from Ahinoam Nini (who recently released a double album), Mimika (renowned for their song "Malka"), Shai 360 (who recently released the catchy single "Kabel"), Assaf Amdurksy (who just released an album in September), Harel Moyal (last year's A Star is Born winner who finally released a single), R&B group Say La Vi (who promise a full-length album in the coming months), and Danny Sanderson (who just released an album).