Monday, August 30, 2010

Jewish Album Review: Dovid Gabay: Eretz Yisroel

Here is my in-depth review of Dovid Gabay's most recent release: Eretz Yisroel.

Eretz Yisroel
Rating: 9
The title song is composed by the famous Elimelech Blumstein and it’s arranged by Moshe Roth. I guess you would categorize it as a rock/disco style and it features Yonatan Porat on guitar as opposed to   Avi Singolda. The song is extremely catchy and you will be able to remember it in seconds. I like the drive on this song as it really gets things going. The different chord changes for the first and second  time around the song  keeps things interesting. There are some nice chord progressions and background child and adult choir here. Dovid is much looser vocally on this album and it shows on this song. Bottom  line:this song is one you will have on repeat.
Rating: 9 ½

Composed and arranged by Pinny Ostriecher. The first thing you will notice about this song is the funk intro. It is certainly not typical of most Jewish music songs. The tune seems to move from the intro into a steady rock groove and then into a funk/disco beat.  This song has lyrics in four languages: Hebrew, English, Yiddish and French which is  a nice touch. The arrangements are very solid and the saxophones are brought to you by Peter Wertheimer. I found this song to be very enjoyable  and is certainly not your run-of-the-mill filler tune. It is sure to have you dancing.
Adon Olam
Rating: 10
Composed by Boruch Levine and is arranged by Yisroel Lamm. Boruch Levine is on a real streak as this song is a real winner! This will certainly be played over many a time at a wedding. There are some fabulous chord changes that are sure to make your hair stand on edge and move you.
Haderes V”haemunah
Rating: 8
Composed by Elie Schwab  and arranged by Ami Cohen. It’s very interesting to hear a real serious Sephardic song written by an Ashkenazi (no doubt Ami helped with that too).  I enjoyed Avi Avidani and his drumming  and Gabay singing at the end over the choir is a real nice touch.
Bain Ha’olam
Rating: 7 
Composed by R” Noach Palay and arranged by Leib Yaakov Rigler. This is the second ballad on the album. This one was written in a minor key and is a bit more typical in that regard. It is certainly a nice song and probably will be played at weddings. It’s not as unusual as Adon Olam and may not grab your attention quite as much. Nice saxophone playing by Shloime Cohen on this tune. Dovid brings the key up a notch toward the end which I enjoyed, as the intensity of it brings a nice melodramatic ending to the song.
Boruch Olam
Rating: 8 ½
The only other song composed by Elimelech Blumstein on this album and arranged by Leib Yaakov Rigler. This moderate rock tune has a real nice vibe to it and just before you thought you would never hear those bag pipes again, (Legabay from the first album) they dust them off to play this intro for you. Uri Miles is your bagpiper (is that even a word?) and you will find yourself humming this song real soon. Yet another catchy tune that has the bass player, Ari Volnitz moving and grooving. I like the doubling of Dovid’s voice in the beginning of this song. They did a very good job of keeping more of that Irish ethnicity by adding Irish drums played by Moishe Yankovsky. Choir was arranged by Mosher Roth and performed very well on this tune.
Raza D’Shabbos
Rating: 9
This ballad was composed Moshe Werzberger and is arranged Hershkowitz. This ballad has some nice chord changes and accents that are pleasantly surprising and keep this song interesting.  This is yet another ballad I would love to perform at a wedding or shabbos table. Once again Shloime cohen plays some fantastic saxophone solos here. Extra note: Ozer Babad is credited with introducing the songs author to Dovid Gabay.
Mi Sheberach
Rating: 9
Composed by Yitzy Waldner and arranged by Mendy Hershkowitz. This disco starts off with Dovid actually making a Mi Sheberach which is interesting.  This song seems to have an element of the song of numah numah in it and has a great beat and vocal style.

V’hu Yishlach
Rating: 9
This rock tune is composed by Yaakov Ben Shabbat and arranged by Moshe Roth. It is a more intensely  styled song than the others.  I enjoy the heavy hitting and drive of this song as well as the bridges written by Moshe. When the choir sings it’s very tight and solid with Moshe Roth at the helm.
Yom Zeh Mechubad
Rating: 8 ½
This waltz composed by Yossi Green and arranged by Yisroel Lamm is what I refer to as retro.It does have some components that are certainly more contemporary. It is very pleasant and has an airy feel to it. The refrain of the song is styled like the zemiros of old and will certainly be appreciated by those who are familiar with this.
Rating: 7 ½
Composed by Eli Laufer and arranged Moshe Roth. This is the only frielach featured on Dovid’s album.It has a nice choir intro and the song is solid but nothing really stands out about it otherwise (unless you count the clarinet playing by Chaim Kirschenbaum).

To hear previews and purchase this album click below

Eretz Yisroel

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