Sabra Sounds

Forty years later, The High Windows' eponymous album is still something to celebrate.

windos disk 88298 (photo credit: )
windos disk 88298
(photo credit: )
THE HIGH WINDOWS Hed Arzi/MeBraysheet) Forty years later, The High Windows' eponymous album is still something to celebrate. The band's three members - Arik Einstein, Shmulik Kraus and Josie Katz - amazingly still influence today's contemporary pop rock scene. It was in February 1967 that the album's first single, "Ainech Yechola," was released to radio rotations. It became an instant hit. And, as they say, the rest is history. Despite the many years that have passed, each of the tracks on this album is still a hit. From "Ahava Rishona" to "Ainech Yechola," listeners will find it difficult not to bop along. There is one spine-tingling song, "Zemer Nogeh," which the late astronaut Ilan Ramon played from space before the Columbia exploded. The song was written by the poet Rachel long before he even dreamed of setting off into orbit. The opening line, "Hatishma Koli, Rachoki Sheli," loosely means "listen to my voice from far away." Kraus and Einstein were very selective about choosing which songwriters they would include on this album. Haim Hefer, Amos Kenan, Hanoch Levin, and Einstein himself, are among the artists to have penned some of their hits. The High Windows were influenced by the Beatles and other contemporary rock groups of the time. There are two CDs in this new release, with some songs appearing both in studio and live form. The album's booklet also includes black and white photos of the three group members from the 1960s and '70s. It is a shame that The High Windows released only one album, because this one will bring listeners a smattering of nostalgic pop from the good old days. SARIT HADAD Zeh She'shomer Alay (Avi Gueta) Fans of singer Sarit Hadad have been known to dismiss reviewers. For them, she can do no wrong. When Hadad releases a new album, she knows that it will go platinum, because no matter what she does, her fans will be there to prop her up. That said, Hadad is missing something on this album. True, her songs are again packaged and produced in top quality. True, many of the songs on the CD instantly became radio hits. And true, her voice is as charasmatic as it has been on her previous 13 albums. Yet, Hadad sticks to what's safe. Using past successful methods, Hadad offers a bit of everything on Zeh She'shomer Alay. There are love songs (the title track, "Alecha Ve'alay," and "Ahavat Chaim"); songs of hope ("Nosat Tfila"); feministic songs ("Ba Li, Lo Ba Li"), and, as has become part of the norm these days, a song by singer-songwriter Keren Peles ("Itach"). Her songs all follow a similar pattern - distressing soft opening and a louder/screeching continuation. Overall, Zeh She'shomer Alay is rather dull and offers nothing fresh.