Bring rock back into fashion?
Shira Margalit (Photo: Ronen Akerman)
If you haven't spent the last month on Mars, two things have been on your mind during it.
The song with the improbable name "My sister no longer tolerates you", sung by Shira Margalit, who is also involved in the hit "Mi Zat" by Anna Zak.
He seems to be everywhere.
Like for example another very successful hit from last year, Gayle's "Abcdefu", "My sister can't stand you anymore" is a hate song for an ex.
She blames him for all his annoying behavior, the horrible things he said to her, the frustration he caused her.
Beyond that, the truth is that this is a fairly ordinary song.
It doesn't have a lot of subtext, original language, special singing or unusual musical moves.
It works thanks to a good chorus, and thanks to the love shared by many: cursing the one who hurt us, and if possible also singing it.
But still you can hear a very surprising sound when you listen to Israel's biggest pop hit in recent weeks.
Something that used to be, before it died out under other fashions, called a rock and roll aesthetic: electric guitars, attitude and fashion, a certain singing style.
Something that was considered until a minute ago as an almost irrelevant sound, the property of those aged 30 and over at the very least, who celebrate a heritage that was long lost to pop, hip hop and oriental music.
If you close your eyes, you can almost imagine Dana Berger of the mid-nineties singing it in sequence with "Passing Warmth".
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a lot of courage for what Shlomi Shaban did yesterday in his concert.
Certainly in the current situation
You can hear these sounds not only in Shira Margalit.
Here and there, on the margins of the playlist, you can notice other songs that touch on a similar style.
It is worth taking into account in this context, from another angle, the songs of Ella Lee and Anna Zak with Aviv Gefen;
Margie's international single from last summer - "Sucks to Know You (FU)", which can easily be imagined performed by a band from the middle of the first decade of the millennium;
And perhaps also the great popularity of the one who was chosen last for the next star - a competition that is the peak of the mainstream - the man and the tank, Eliav Zohar, you won't see him move without the guitar;
Nehadad: In most of these cases, these are musicians who operate in distinctly pop-mainstream frameworks, but color their songs with a rock aesthetic - a kind of decoration or a quote or a distant echo of the ideology called rock and roll.
It's a small group, admittedly, but not without context: in America this movement could be noticed more than a year ago, when the charts were taken over by Olivia Rodrigo, a pop star who openly admires rockers Avril Lavigne and Alanis Morissette;
Or of course the Italian Moonskin, who managed to shine - of all places in the world - precisely in a distinct pop contest like Eurovision, and then went on to a successful career on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.
In a strange way, the pop world embraced the hits of these artists precisely after many years without significant huge rock anthems, neither in the world nor in Israel, and when the status of rock is at an all-time low.
This counter-movement is connected with nostalgia, rebellion against the contemporary sound and also with a private need to return to sources of inspiration.
My colleague Avi Goldberger pointed out this move in a brilliant review of the state of pop that he published here a year and a half ago.
Now, it seems, he has officially made aliyah.
Goldberger suggested as the first swallow for this wave "The Big City", a song by Statik and Ben El with Agam Bohbut that did not receive significant attention compared to the big hit from the duo's album, "Zero Effort".
"My sister can't stand you anymore" is already in another place.
He stars in the parade for weeks, scorched Tiktok and at once launched the career of the creator behind him, until recently a completely unknown figure.
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This wave is influenced by the international examples mentioned above, but it also has a local context.
In the last year or two, many felt that the new pop had taken over almost every good part of the Israeli mainstream.
Naa Kirel, Anna Zak, Nono, Neta Barzilai, Ella-Lee Lahav and Agam Bohbot, or Statik and Ben El, Margi, Ran Denker and Stefan among others on the men's side, swept the entire industry after them in an attempt to reproduce the formula, and there were those who complained about the disappearance of forms Other songs - certainly in relation to the sad state of Israeli rock, which is hardly present at the front of the middle of the road today.
The huge success of "My sister no longer tolerates you" may indicate a pendulum movement to the other side: it seems that there are quite a few young people who are happy to hear electric guitars at the front of the stage.
Maybe rock isn't dead after all.
But it's also worth remembering: Margalit, Margie and their friends are first and foremost pop artists who enjoy drawing inspiration from what was here 25 years ago or more, but they don't define themselves by it, and neither does their audience.
This is a generation of eclectic musicians who are free from the definitions that once separated the different scenes, and they will be happy to collect everything that comes along to write a winning hit, but don't expect them to re-conquer Penguin and Roxane or for the radio to look for the next Safed elders.
But maybe this infatuation of Israeli pop with the legacy of rock will bear fruit in the future: who knows, maybe the return of this sound to fashion right now will excite the next generation.