Category Archives: News

Ehud Banai and Michael Chapman release clip for “Angel” off joint album

Legendary Israeli folk rocker Ehud Banai has released a new music video for his song “Angel“, which also features British jazz/folk veteran Michael Chapman. The track is the lead single from Banai and Chapman’s new joint album EB=MC², which just released yesterday. You can find streaming links for the album here.

“Angel” makes a compelling case for the two artists uniting. Chapman is the obvious standout, delivering the song’s beautifully spiritual lyrics in a world-weary rasp that sounds like a cross between Tom Waits and the late great Leonard Cohen. (Really, the whole song sounds like it could be a lost track from Cohen’s final album.) Banai, meanwhile, provides a Hebrew verse and Mizrahi-style vocalizing that make a hauntingly perfect counterpoint to the song’s dark country feel, like Jo Amar guesting on a Johnny Cash song.

Zeke Finn releases new single “Under the Willow”

artworks-000237311962-w181g6-t500x500Hasidic alt-rapper Zeke Finn has released a new single entitled “Under the Willow“. The song was co-written and recorded with Finn’s longtime friend, singer-songwriter Avi Snow, while Finn’s father Mike Finn created the artwork.

“Under the Willow” is a dark, ethereal folk/soul ballad that, while not devoid of structure, eschews the typical verse/chorus format to create a drifting, dreamlike feel. The lyrics, which could be interpreted as a poetic telling of the Moses story (“Stay poised when your swimming upstream / Seems to me that you can be / The one who sets us free“), seem to revolve around ideas of being destined for greatness while trying to survive in an antagonistic world. There’s also a feeling of gritty persistence, as Finn repeats the refrain “Hold my breath, bite my tongue / Taste my blood, the work is never done“.

You can hear it on Soundcloud and Spotify below.

Brooklyn Jazz Warriors release “Subway Station” lyric video

The Brooklyn Jazz Warriors have released a lyric video for their new single “Subway Station“. The track comes from the band’s upcoming sophomore album, Kedeira.

“Subway Station”, while rooted in band’s titular genre, bears more than a little resemblance to old ’70s folk rock a la the Eagles and CSNY in its melody and lyrical style. Said lyrics, meanwhile, confront a young man who has lost interest in “freedom” (an ending quote from Pirkei Avot clarifies this as referring to the Torah) and expresses hope that he will change his mind.

Kedeira comes out September 10th and will be available for pre-order August 10th; you can get an early listen at the group’s Bandcamp page. The band will also be performing this Friday at The Camping Trip, where frontman Yisroel Arye Gootblatt will also be performing alongside Chillent earlier in the day.

PERL releases live clip “Say It Again”

PERL, the new project of Bulletproof Stockings co-founder Perl Wolfe, has released a new song entitled “Say It Again” via live acoustic clip.  The audio was recorded by Tyler Rice at Transient Sound Recording Studio in Chicago.

Showing the strength of her voice and songwriting, Wolfe here gives a mesmerizing performance with only a piano and a programmed kick drum for support. The song’s haunting minor-key melody is just dripping with ’90s alt-pop goodness, while the lyrics about the dangerous power of words (with lines like “Check your facts / Only the truth lasts“) feel especially relevant in the current political landscape.

PERL will be performing at The Camping Trip this Sunday and are currently working on a debut album.

The Camping Trip 2017 To Feature All the Cool Bands (Updated 8/3)

The Camping Trip, an annual outdoor music festival held in Jefferson, NY, will be happening the weekend of August 4-6, and the announced lineup for this year is chock full of huge names in Jewish alternative, both established and up-and-coming.

The list includes Jewish rock pioneers Moshav and Soulfarm; rappers Matisyahu, Kosha Dillz, and Hebro; and Hasidic folksters Zusha and Levi Robin. Elsewhere on the marquee are Simple Man, Chillent, PERL (ex-Bulletproof Stockings), Yisroel Arye Gootblatt of Brooklyn Jazz Warriors, singer-songwriter Emily Zimmer, and Jeremy Gaisin’s Midnite Remedy, with even still more unrevealed slots set for later in the festival.

You can find out more about The Camping Trip and how to purchase tickets here.

(h/t Ash at That’s Frum!?)

UPDATE 7/26: A new promo for the event (below) has officially added a whole bunch of new names to the list. Among them are: singer-songwriter Esther Freeman, who will be hosting a Shabbat Candle Lighting for women as well as performing on Sunday; Yanky Shpigelman, brother and former bandmate of the previously-covered Esther S.; John Wylde (aka Avi Yaniger), a folksinger originally from Jerusalem; Glaser Drive, a folk rock/Americana quartet of sisters; Pesach Stadlin, a student rabbi, “spirit guide”, and songleader; and Moishy “Mark” Klaver, a pop singer-songwriter from Suffern, NY. Other additions, lacking in web presence but nevertheless intriguingly named, include JooraffeMs. Shira, Shloni, Psydlox, and The Klezmaniac (presumably not to be confused with the Grammy-winning Klezmatics). The video ends with “More Artists TBA”, so expect more updates to this post as the festival nears.

 

UPDATE 8/3: A more-or-less final lineup has been published (see below), although a “Secret Set” is still listed and the bottom asterisk on the poster notes that it is subject to change. Ignoring DJs and artists without an easy-to-find web presence, here are some of the new acts revealed (another h/t to That’s Frum!?):

  • Pumpidisa, a youthful NY wedding and simcha band, will play the Main stage Sunday evening.
  • Innocent Persona, a pop rock band led by vocalist Ittai Stern and affiliated with Diwon’s Bancs Media, will play the Cloud stage earlier that day.
  • Elana Brody, a Virginia-born, Brooklyn-based musician who eloquently describes her sound as “Melodramatic Orgasm Pop”, will play an acoustic set that afternoon.
  • Aaron Holder, a folk-pop singer-songwriter influenced by the Lubavitcher Rebbe and praised by the likes of Moshe Hecht, will play the Cloud stage after PERL.
  • Blanket Statementstein, a very, very underground hippie/punk/alternative collective best known for their association with Moshiach Oi!, will close out the festival that night on the Cloud stage.

 

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The Camping Trip lineup