Tamar Aphek is one of the biggest names in the Israeli contemporary rock scene having been crowned ‘Israel’s guitar goddess’ by Timeout Tel-Aviv.
Years in a prestigious children’s choir, a decade of piano lessons and a musical conservatory education led Tamar to the power of the electric guitar
“I remember when I bought my first really cheap, small amplifier, and my first shitty guitar,” recalls Tamar Aphek. “I will never feel so happy about a guitar and amplifier again. Even if I play the most expensive Fender, nothing will compare to that excitement.”
In the process of writing and recording her new album Aphek became fascinated by combining musical sounds and stylings she felt weren’t being incorporated by other artists.
In order to make her new record, All Bets Are Off, exactly as she wanted it, Aphex chose to produce the album herself and turned to Daniel Schlett to mix, and Greg Calbi, who has worked with John Lennon, Bob Dylan and David Bowie, to master.
To capture the band at their most locked-in, All Bets Are Off was recorded after months of touring round the globe, but mainly at the studio of legendary funk and soul imprint Daptone Records. That time spent rehearsing and remixing ideas was vital to the album’s sound as Aphek became increasingly fascinated with producing her rhythm section, and fostering the relationship between drums and bass.
“Russian Winter is my first concept music video,” notes Aphek. “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 Corona virus, 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 by sticking to the common-place it will help us move forward into the unknown world.”
All Bets Are Off is out on 29 January on Kill Rock Stars.
Words by Paul Clarke, you can see his author profile here.