KEREN PELES Im Eleh Hachaim (Hed Arzi) Over the past year, Keren Peles has changed Israeli rock. She initiated the change with her pen, writing and composing super-hits "Lesham" and "November" for singer Miri Mesika and "Tivrach" for Shiri Maimon. She then cemented her status with knockout single "Ve'at," sung by Harel Skaat. Her skills as a songwriter have never been in doubt, and Peles wrote both the lyrics and music for 12 of the 13 tracks on her debut album (the exception, "Yoter Meeday," was penned by Yehuda Amichai). The album's lyrics are generally strong, with the words to "Evyatar" the most powerful on the album. As a composer, Peles demonstrates her understanding of how to work with different instruments, scales and arrangements; it says something that an Israeli rock artist has produced a top-selling album without the guitar being spotlighted. Actually, guitars can be found on just one track here - the title song ("If This is Life"). Peles comes from a background in piano, and her album carries a softer rock feel as a result. Im Eleh Hachaim proves Peles' talent as a singer, her voice packed with emotion on hit singles "Itay" and the title track. The musician, who can also be seen on stage at the Habima National Theater, is a good performer and knows when to raise or drop the tone. Whether it's the peppy "Larutz Larutz" ("Run Run" or the poignant "Evyatar," Peles maintains a power over the listener. ORLY FRIDER Blondub Sexy Sound (Hatav Hashmini/imusic) Blondub is the moniker of Orly Frider, a producer, singer and songwriter who has shaken up the dub field with her unique style. A former member of the world music group Aura, Frider offers up seven tracks (four songs, three remixes) on this debut EP, blending dub, dancehall and electro styles to create a fresh and sexy sound. Frider collaborated with European dub masters Sir Larsie and Dub Rogue on this release, as well as with local electronica star Yossi Fine. Though dub originated in the Caribbean, an Israeli singing in Hebrew fits the style absolutely. "Eich Hee Holechet" ("How She Goes") is the album's standout song, while the track "dub remix" proves Frider also recognizes good ambient dub sound. Frider's lyrics range from biting, as she skewers the so-called ideal woman on "Eich Hee Holechet," to satirical, as she derides the stereotypical woman's role of leaving her life behind to take care of her family and home on "Ha'ahava Hazot" ("This Love"). She's humorous when she reflects on life in Israel on "Omdim Bator" ("Standing in Line"), and realistic when she ponders our failure to change the world in which we live in "Holfim Me'aleycha" ("Passing Above You"). Throughout the EP, Frider combines her colorful voice with reverb and extra percussion to provide a distinctive take on the dub style.