Ivri Lider, “Hakol Bo’er” Ivri Lider is everywhere these days. Drive around town and you may well pass an ad of the singer modeling his new fashion collection just as “Hakol Bo’er,” the single he released this week, comes on the car radio. I don’t know anything about fashion, but I’m betting that the collection is better than the single.
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The song isn’t too bad in and of itself, but it is hard to find the spark in it, musically at least — the explosive material, the longed-for courage that the lyrics talk about. “Hakol Bo’er,” which colloquially means “everything is urgent” but literally means “everything is burning,” belongs to the unexciting genre of songs in which Lider, who recently turned 40, contrasts his present-day life with his fiery youth. Aviv Geffen did that in his new album, not all that successfully, and now Lider has gone in the same direction, aided by the same producer, Yoad Nevo, who has refined the heavy and dramatic sound (including ringing bells, ridiculously enough).
While the sound moves the song forward effectively, it imparts an industrial and not very fresh character to it. Still, the line “The skin of my face, reddened with pride” could make this song into an audience anthem.
Daniela Spector, “Livyatan” The introduction of the second single from Daniela Spector’s upcoming album, a daughter’s song about (and to) her father, seems to confuse a new year’s card with a song, in the line “On the occasion of the new year I wish you joy and success.”
At various points, the lyrics sound like a clichéd piano ballad. But then comes the refrain, and suddenly the song opens and lifts, thanks in part to a delicate up-and-down melodic game and to the image formed by the lyrics: the father as a whale (livyatan) carrying his daughter on his back as he searches, but does not find, a place to put her down. I’d suggest giving the video a pass, well-done though it is. It does the incredible: It hides a whale.
Dana International, “Little Faiths” The previous single Dana International released, “Down On Me,” was a naughty and nice firecracker of a club hit. Her new single, called “Emunot Ktanot” in Hebrew, is the total opposite, as the first lines of the refrain make clear: “Relax, relax / You’ll arrive in the end / Don’t be silent inside after the craziness.”
On paper, this new ballad seems to be a good choice to expand the singer’s emotional and musical range, but it does not pass the ear test (the ear being mine in this case). A melody by Yehuda Poliker is not an insurance policy, and in this case the musician provided a fairly anemic melody, which falls in the refrain rather than rising. Dana does not sound like she is in her element, except for a point toward the end of the song (“I have a look inside that is cold as ice, and a thousand warm looks too, that aren’t always clear”) when the rhythm suddenly intensifies and there is some nice playfulness with the high background vocals. But it is too little, too late to save this song from a plague that doesn’t usually afflict Dana International’s listeners: boredom.