hear this

Thursday 2 August was my late mother’s birthday. She would have been eighty-six. Also my imaginary friend Rusty Shirazi’s nineteenth, who shares Lee Jeffers’s birthday for reasons I’ve enumerated before. I was preoccupied with freelance work all day, though, and shamefully forgot the duple occasion.

Friday 3 August, yesterday, my muse of the last four or five years Ivri Lider released his sixth full-length studio album, Mishehu Paam (Somebody Once). Naturally I bought and downloaded it right fast. I’ve been w.a.i.t.i.n.g. His last, Beketzev A’hid Batnu’ot Shel Haguf (The Steady Rhythm of Body Movements), came out in 2008! I mean, the last four years haven’t been entirely barren of Ivriana—his side project with Jonny Goldstein, The ¥oung Professionals, is tremendous fun—but, well, Ivri’s solo work broke my ten-year-long writer’s block.

And so, how is it, the new album? Admittedly, Ha’anashim Ha’chadashim (The New People, 2002), the first album I downloaded, will always be the sentimental favorite and Beketzev A’hid Batnu’ot Shel Haguf on first listen made me wish to die, on second to live forever. So Mishehu Paam had a lot to live up to. The title track was promising: the video hit YouTube in May.

Heartbreaking visually, musically and vocally powerful.

The remaining twelve tracks? Took a couple of listens to creep up on me. No standout that’s going to displace “Ha’anashim Ha’chadashim,” “Al Kav Ha’mayim,” “Sfarad,” or my god “Bo” from the 2002 release or basically every track from the 2008 from my affections, but really. Yes. Yes.

Here’s the second video, “Mazal Tov Israel,” a doubtless terribly topical (if one understands Hebrew) collabo with Mooke.

Added to the soundtrack for the three stories I’m working on: “The Oily Man,” a tale from the subcontinent first mentioned back in May and Still. Not. Done. Dammit; another, as yet untitled, subcontinental story; and the fourth Liam story, “…and the Changelings.” And for the on-going revision of the novel in which Rusty Shirazi plays such a central part. (Happy belated, Rusty!) And the designing and the editing and the designing and the proof reading.

Exhausted, that’s what I am. Help me out, T¥P!

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