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SPLASHNEWS-Review of Eli Marcus-“Dovid Hamelech”

by SPLASHNEWS March 31, 2015

@SPLASHNEWSUSA: “Wow! Pretty good for a new guy”! This statement sums up most of the comments I’ve heard since this great album found its home in many homes across the country. “Dovid Hamelech” by Eli Marcus is indeed an album produced with a mark of quality. An album produced with a determination to give us solid songs which we will enjoy wherever we may be and for people of all ages. Kudos to the producers Shai Bachar and Nir Graf. How can an album have so many good songs? Well, take a look at the composer. Yup, it’s the man from Sea Gate, Yossi Green. Yossi continues to be a force in the JM world and his sea salted soul does not cease to delight on this album. Did I recently develop an ear for poetry? I’ll continue to monitor this development. This well balanced album has all kinds of surprises and you are sure to find a favorite. Which songs are my favorites? Read on to find out!

  1. Sheyiboneh- The album starts off with a great Chabad style horah. The theme in this song is asking for the Bais Hamikdosh to be rebuilt quickly in our days. The melody coupled with this lyric makes it a happy song of hope. Yossi Green doesn’t take long making his presence known on the album. We hear his bridge at 1:53. Nice arrangement throughout and I especially like the blend of horns. Great album opener! 4 out of 5 stars
  2. Rofei Nemon- This stunning slow song starts off with only the soft vocal of Eli before being joined by piano and then acoustic guitar for the high. The music interlude is interesting and features what I believe is a harmonica or something of the sort. The drums come in the second time around along with strong vocals and nice harmony in the high. Eli’s vocals really impress toward the end of the song basically starting from 3:35. He ends off sounding like his relative Benny Friedman. 4 out of 5 stars
  3. Dovid Hamelech- You know sometimes you get to a title track, and it’s a major let-down? Not this time! This song is one of my favorites on the album. Really catchy chorus. I like the electric arrangement that’s got cool stuff through the whole track without getting out of hand. At 2:50 we get a bridge that freshens up the song before the last high. It’s also in this bridge where Yossi Green opens the door while Eli is recording and wants to join the fun for a second. Or so it seems. Want a driving song? You got it with Dovid Hamelech. 5 out of 5 stars
  4. Kol Torah- This song comes from a midrash saying that by Har Sinai the world heard the first ever Kol Torah from Hashem Himself- “Anochi Hashem Elokecha”. The track starts of really slow and then at 1:45 the Yossi Green beat kicks in. Listen and you’ll know what I’m talking about. You might need to listen to this more than once to appreciate it. It’s got a laid back sort of feel. He ends of the song with a vocal that could easily be Lipa Schmeltzer. It’s not. All in all, this song is vintage Green. 3 ½ out of 5 stars
  5. Mazal Tov- Yeah! This is the song you buy the album for. The music arrangement in the low and high parts contrast really well which keeps it exciting every time you listen. You will like the song as soon as you turn it on. 5 out of 5 stars
  6. Chavivi- I believe this song is in the salsa genre. Pass the chips. This is a song when you want to chill and need some music in the background. Not my favorite song but it definitely adds flavor to the album. Mild or Hot? You decide. 2 ½ out of 5 stars
  7. Av Harachamim- Really nice intro made up of a piano, guitar, and percussion blend. This is a three part song and is like a classic Jewish slow song with a subtle more artsy arrangement. I would have liked to hear a little more music and a beat in the high part like a more classic song but that just my opinion. 2 out of 5 stars
  8. Osios- Really funky song that I can’t stop humming to myself! The intro is so random and has nothing to do with the song that follows. That makes the song even more awesome because I love the unexpected. The lyric comes from the sefer Megaleh Amukos- who I happen to be a descendant of. Leave it to Yossi Green to find words for songs where no one else would ever dream of looking. You may be familiar with the lyrics in the high part as they are more famous and come from the Zohar Hakadosh. This song includes many Yiddish lyrics as well; explaining that we are “tied” to Hashem and the Torah. Love this track! 4 out of 5 stars
  9. Look Inside- This song is composed by Eli Schwab who is starting to make his mark in many albums as a fantastic composer. To be honest I did not like this song to begin with but really started to like it more with every listen. In fact when I was too quick to make my voice heard that I wasn’t a fan, I really started to get bombarded by music aficionados; most notably Yossi Zweig. Yossi, you may not be completely crazy after all. The song is really fresh and different. Don’t get thrown off by the Yiddish! 3 ½ out of 5 stars
  10. Keili Machzik- A solid, more typical fast song. It’s a classic Jewish rock with heavy electric guitar riffs throughout. There is also plenty of flute which is interesting for such a song and I like it. The beat picks up for a bit at 3:10 before Yossi’s background vocals join in for the ending. 3 out of 5 stars
  11. Yishtabach- This really nice slow chazzanus style song starts off sounding like an old record with old-time chazzanus. This shtick was also on Lipa’s “Likro Es Hahallel” if you recall. The low starts with Eli backed up by a full choir and is followed by Yossi Green. Now this is interesting because Eli and Yossi take turns singing but Eli sings with a Litvishe Havaarah and Yossi with a Chassidishe Havureh. It is a brilliant idea and turns the song almost into a combination of cultures. A nice way to end the album. 3 ½ out of 5 stars

Two 5 star songs and three 4 star songs- That’s what I call a solid album.

Shout out to those that are still reading this and shame on those who switched back to their cell phones after just 2 lines. Ha! As always feel free to leave any comments below or email comments to splashnews.jmr@gmail.com Of course we welcome you to join us on twitter for all music news, updates, and quick reviews- @SPLASHNEWSUSA     Thanx for reading and stay classy.

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