WATCH: Tamar Aphek – ‘Russian Winter’

A brooding mix of distorted bass lines, cutting vocals and thumping beats, Israeli rocker Tamar Aphek‘s latest single ‘Russian Winter’ is a sonic force to be reckoned with. Taken from her upcoming album All Bets Are Off, set for release via Kill Rock Stars on 29th January, Aphek has shared a new video to accompany the beautiful, yet desolate track.

“‘Russian Winter’ is my first concept music video,” Aphek explains. “It was developed in a few stages. First, a visual translation of my personal feelings in light of the collapse of the frameworks and creative endeavours in which I was involved with before the coronavirus, hours of brainstorming with the director Amir Buxbaum on how to transform the ideas into a music video, and finally diving with the animator in a symbolic ocean of images. We are facing huge changes in our old familiar world – I wanted to include images like the cycle of the four seasons – hoping that by sticking to the common place it will help us move forward into the unknown world.”

Hailed as “Israel’s guitar goddess” by Timeout in Tel-Aviv, Aphek’s contemporary rock sounds mark her out as an exciting talent in the world of guitar music. The experienced instrumentalist produced her new record by herself, working alongside the mastering talents of Daniel Schlett (War on Drugs, DIIV) and Greg Calbi (John Lennon, Bob Dylan, David Bowie) to finalise her sound. ‘Russian Winter’ is the third single to be released from the album, showcasing Aphek’s ability to dismantle the world around her through commanding vocals and a cacophony of guitar noise.

Watch the video for ‘Russian Winter’ below.

Follow Tamar Aphek on bandcamp, Spotify, Instagram, Twitter & Facebook for more updates.

Photo Credit: Guy Nahum Lëvy

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

FIVE FAVOURITES: Bones Garage

Tel Aviv-based band Bones Garage have been making music together for the last 6 years. Formed of Ariel Pedatzur, Eden Atad, Yaniv Bin, Dor Harari, Yoni Deutsch and Raz Copperman, they’ve played stages at Glastonbury, SXSW, All Points East, and The Great Escape, and are set to release their third record in May this year. Influenced by elements of post-punk, surf rock and shoegaze, the six piece create intriguing soundscapes, but their latest single ‘I’ve Loved’ shows the band can also deliver stripped back, gentler tracks too. 

We think one of the best ways to get to know a band is by asking what music inspired them to write in the first place. We caught up with Bones Garage to ask them about their “Five Favourites” – five albums that have influenced their song writing techniques. Check out their choices below, and scroll down to watch the video for ‘I’ve Loved’ at the end of this post.

1. John Lennon – Plastic Ono Band
Like many others, we grew up as Beatles freaks. The first show Eden and Yaniv ever played together was a Beatles covers show at their school. But somehow this album ended up resonating with us more than any Beatles record. It’s raw, personal, heartbreaking, broken, yet perfectly beautiful. The experiments and cleverness of The Beatles was replaced by bare-minimum arrangements. As a band of six people, our initial arrangements are rarely minimal, but this album is a great reminder that sometimes simple and raw is the most beautiful.

2. Elliot Smith – Either/Or
We’ve been called many things – post-punk, surf, shoegaze, and so on – and the aesthetics in our music are indeed influenced by many genres. But that’s all extra stuff on top of the most important thing – the songwriting itself. We admire too many songwriters to list here, but Elliot Smith stands apart as one of the most open, sensitive, talented and emotional songwriters in history. Either/Or is the peak of his career, an album that perfectly sums up the emotions we strive to achieve in music.

3. Timber Timbre – Hot Dreams
It all started when Timber Timbre were scheduled to play in Israel, and we were asked to cover one of their songs to help promote the show. Somehow, we ended up as their opening act for two shows in Israel, years apart. We’ve discovered this great band together, and their lush, dark and dramatic style have influenced us greatly. The gentle, meaningful drumming of Olivier Farfield has been a great influence on our drummer Dor (who used to be an insanely loud metal drummer), and we’ve discovered and experienced their great music together, as a band. And also, we think our cover turned out pretty well (listen to it here).

4. Pavement – Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain
After a revolutionary debut album, Stephen Malkmus and Pavement delivered a masterpiece that’s everything rock music should aspire to be. It’s a nostalgic record, reminds us of hot summer days, makes you want to ride a skateboard with friends, listen to music and fall in love like when we were naïve teenagers. It’s full of humor and silliness, a reminder we shouldn’t always take ourselves too seriously, and still manages to be profound and meaningful. It sounds like it was made up on the spot and recorded in one take, yet every note and word is right where it should be. And besides, Stephen Malkmus really is something special.’Middle America’ is, hands down, one of the best songs we’ve heard in the last few years.

5. The Microphones – The Glow Pt 2.
When we were teens, Eden and Yaniv recorded a string of weird, ambitious albums on their own in a home studio. Most of them honestly weren’t great at all, but it helped us become who we are. So it’s great to see such a masterpiece like “The Glow Pt. 2” made in a home studio. Phil Elverum has combined raw, emotional, stark songwriting with experimentation and weird noises, taking us to an emotional journey that has deeply influenced our music, and they way we’ve learned to use noise to express ourselves.

Thanks to Bones Garage for sharing their favourites with us. Follow the band on Facebook & Spotify for more updates.

Photo Credit: Eirad Netzer