Get infected

Psychedelic trance duo Infected Mushroom smashed their way into the Top 10 in No. 9 on the all-comers list of DJ Magazine.

dash cover IM (photo credit: )
dash cover IM
(photo credit: )
The following is the cover story of d"ash - The Israeli magazine for English speaking young people around the world. To subscribe, click here The psychedelic trance duo, Infected Mushroom, are Israel's most famous rock artists. Just two years after breaking into the Top 100 of DJ Magazine, Erez Aizen (also I.Zen) and Amit Duvdevani (Duvdev) have smashed their way into the Top 10 No. 9 actually, on the all-comers list. They're mentioned in the same breath as greats like DJ Tiesto, Paul van Dyk and Armin van Buuren. They came home briefly for a 10th anniversary concert. The show Outside it's cold, raining. Inside, it couldn't be hotter. Duvdev and Erez are home at last. For two hours, they captivate the fans packed into the Ganei Hata'aruha hall in north Tel Aviv. A night to remember, a concert to relish, a celebration of creation the 10th anniversary of our home-grown, now internationally renowned phenomenon known as Infected Mushroom. Infected Mushroom are now LA-based and perform all over the world. They're more a household name abroad than they are at home. But Israel remains extremely important to them, insists producer Eyal Yankovich. "Israel is world famous for some of its high-tech creations. Infected Mushroom is a different kind of export all human all creation. In creativity, we lead!" The show warms up with Beit Habubot (House of Dolls). They're only the appetizer. The entr×™e is mushroom, deliciously Infected Mushroom, energetically joined by the unique sound and movement of another internationally renowned Israeli export Mayumana. Madness strokes the audience when DJ Skazi joins Duvdev and Erez for a rendition of their famous I Wish. The wildest moment of the night comes for dessert. Birthday is dished up, as it first was, together with rock guitarist Berry Sakharof. The sounds of DJ Asterix ring in our ears as we leave sometime after 2 a.m. "tired but happy" as we used to say in sixth grade after the annual school trip. People of all ages were enchanted. Liran Hutmacher is 24, a long-time fan: "I'd been a bit nervous that there'd be chaos, but the only heat came from the boys. Wow, did they ever get us to forget our everyday worries for a few hours and to enjoy some insane sound. It'll be in our ears for a long time." Dr. Malkin is a middle-aged guy: "As long as I can remember I've been an electronic music enthusiast, so I was pleased when my two daughters invited me to join them. The atmosphere was good, people were enthusiastic. I enjoyed it." Talk about understating things, Doc! You can be sure there's not a soul who was there who doesn't now feel part of the international Infected Mushroom fan base. It ranges from the US through South America and Europe across to Japan. Meanwhile, the infected mushrooms had no time to rest, with gigs in Barcelona, London and Rio coming up next. Roots Erez and Duvdev have been together since 1996. They've released seven albums starting with The Gathering in 1999 and through to Vicious Delicious (2007). Duvdev's 33, Erez, 27. They were born in the Krayot just north of Haifa. Both had conventional and classical musical training as kids. Erez learned to play the organ at age four and started studying piano at the age of eight. Duvdev, too, played piano for nine years from age seven until he made the switch to heavy metal and punk rock. He went to his first trance party in 1991, a week before being conscripted into the army. It was a life-changing moment, he says. From then on he could think only trance. In 2004, the boys were joined by guitarists Erez Netz and Tom Cunningham. Tom plays with IM in the US, Erez plays the rest of the gigs. Here and there They are celebrities in LA and they've played at festivals all over the US including Ultra, Virgin and Coachella ("best on the planet," they call it). They've shared a stage with Red Hot Chili Peppers, Black Eyed Peas and the great Jewish rapper Matisyahu. "We've also been playing pure rock venues," they confess. "We're happy about that because we never wanted to be categorized." They are especially fond of the scene in the US. Erez told DJ Magazine, "We get the most energy from our US shows. In the UK it can be an old scene for people. But in America, people don't know what to expect. The shows are a revelation." Their breakthrough into Israeli rock awareness came in 2002 with Birthday. And, their links to home are getting ever stronger. The next IM album will contain distinctly Israeli titles. Black Shwarma refers to a famous shwarma snack stand in Haifa, and Sa'ed was inspired by a hummous joint in Acre. Seven things you didn't know about IM Birthday is Israel's best selling single ever The group's MySpace page has been viewed more than a million times, more than half the viewings for Eminem's page The band's name commemorates a disbanded punk rock band of the same name, in which Duvdev was once a member. IM recently recorded five tracks of the legendary The Doors. They sometimes get inspiration for song titles from their fans Internet forum. They've been invited to perform in Jordan and in Dubai Duvdev got married this year; Erez had his first child Catch Infected Mushroom on YouTube!