Nothing about Iggy Dayan – singer, drummer, guitarist, novelist, and a member of Mashina, Israel’s legendary rock group – would hint at the turn he took in his latest solo projects. His new album, Hemdat Avot, is a masterpiece comprised of details, minute and grand. It is an almost monastic creation, that presents much-loved Israeli classics, arranged for solely voice and guitar.
In Hebrew, “Hemdat Avot” stands for appreciation of an individual’s ancestors and of one’s former generations. In addition, “Eretz Hemdat Avot” is a synonym for the Land (Eretz) of Israel. In this album, Dayan evaluates and tightens his relationship with Israeli music. Like an adopted child, who, when grown up, embarks on a journey to find his parents, he ventures deep into the Classic-Israeli song portfolio, looking for the gems that may have given birth to his own music. While his early creations were characterized by a distinct distancing from Israeli culture and from the Hebrew language – attempting to resemble the western music that he loved – his current work must match his lifestyle and his habitation, and, thus, be free, while tightly coupled to true roots.
While folk and rock music always “sounded right” when performed in English, Dayan’s romance with the Hebrew language strengthened over the years. In addition to the songs he had written and recorded since adolescence, his first acclaimed novel, “Chava”, was recently published. Amongst its many facets, the novel deals with various Israeli archetypes, as well as with personal identity. Like in the case of that imaginary, adopted child, typical questions started to surface: Who am I? What created me? What are the similarities between my forebearers and myself?
Dayan and his collaborator, the producer and sonic guru Tal Trivish, jointly decided to experiment with treating mythological, classical Israeli songs in the same manner they treat the original music they produce, a methodology based on voice and guitar that are performed and recorded simultaneously, as a monolithic whole. They strived to strip these timeless creations of the arrangements that engulfed them – that are true to the time they were conceived – so as to expose and accentuate their lyrics and their melody. For this reason, they decided that this album will not contain any additional instruments.
Hemdat-Avot was recorded in Stereo DSD 256 using the Anubis Premium Analog to Digital Converter and Preamp from Merging Technologies with Nordic Audio Lab NU100K microphones, AccuSound MX4 and IX3 cables, Amphion One 18 & OS Acoustics DBS8 monitor loudspeakers, Grace Design M905 monitor controller, Sendy Audio Aiva headphones and Triad Orbit microphone stands.
Iggy Dayan – Acoustic Guitar & Vocals
TracklistPlease note that the below previews are loaded as 44.1 kHz / 16 bit.
Total time: 00:34:02
Aryeh Lebanon, Ehud Manor, Haim Hefer, Amos Kenan, Haim Nachman Bialik, Matti Caspi, Miki Gavrielov, Naomi Shemer, Natan Alterman, Nurit Hirsh, Oded Avisar, Shalom Hanoch, Shmulik Kraus, Uri Asaf, Yechiel Mohar, Yohanan Zarai
AccuSound MX4 (Microphones) and AccuSound IX3 (Monitors)
|Digital to Analog Converter|
Anubis Premium, Merging Technologies
Sendy Audio Aiva
Amphion One 18 & OS Acoustics DBS8
Nordic Audio Lab NU100K
Grace Design M905
|Original Recording Format|
Anubis Premium, Merging Technologies
|Release Date||January 6, 2023|
A thoroughly captivating solo guitar and voice album of folk tunes by Israeli musician Iggy Dayan. Nicely performed and recorded. Can’t understand a word of it—but that’s not a problem… I recommend you find your quiet place, turn the lights out, and let this album wash over you. Recommended.
When preparing to listen to voice and guitar, one expects personal, intimate music. But when listening to the music in Iggy Dayan’s project, magic happens. The guitar transforms into shiny ripples of sounds that invite you to enter, and entice you to dip inside. As if born from the strings, the singing voice silently screams, and recites the words – gently and with sensitivity – while transforming the listener into a part of the occurrence.
Such a thing can happen only when all is true and clean of shticks. The selected songs are a purified truth of the Song of Israel. Iggy Dayan’s ability to provide them with a new, personal layer – while staying true to their essence – is magnificent.
One needs quiet to listen to this music. With environmental rustles, or bird chirps and drops of rain. Something new will surface is every listening, that, allegedly, was not there before. The songs form and touch anew, every time.
(Shlomo Israeli is a musicologist, a lecturer at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and at the Israel Museum and the head of the Music Department at Kol Israel, an artistic advisor to the Israel Festival, an editor and producer of concert series and international festivals.)
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