One of Israel’s most influential bands, Vaadat Charigrim are a band that prove good music has the power to transcend boundaries and overcome borders. Their sound may draw reference to Ride and Slowdive, but by infusing it with influences closer to home, and positively exploiting the rhythmic lilt of their ancient language – all their songs are in Hebrew – their evocative, multi faceted tunes have earned them an ever growing international following among the more discerning ranks of the shoegaze crowd.
The bands latest album, ‘Sinking As A Stone’ was released last Friday (25th September); The follow up to 2012’s ‘The World Is Well Lost’, the album is part two of the bands ‘Tel Aviv Trilogy’ and features seven tracks that deal with the loneliness and frustration that many a young Israeli can find themselves in.
In addition to the album the Tel Aviv trio have also announced that October will see them perform in the UK for the very first time. As an appetiser for what to expect, the band have released a video of them performing ‘Hashiamum Shokea’ (translation: ‘The Boredom Sinks In’) live, with a little help from fellow Tel Aviv act Reo.
In anticipation of the live shows we managed to get a quick interview with Vaadat Charigrim to get a bit of background on the band…
BM: Who’s who in Vaadat Charigim?
VC: We are – Yuval Guttman on drums, Dan Fabian Bloch on bass. Juval Haring – vocals and guitar.
BM: We already know you are from Tel aviv – but how did you all meet?
VC: We knew each other from underground shows in the city, other bands, being part of the same labels, etc.
BM: Where did you first get together?
VC: At a school’s bomb shelter. Dan’s kids went there, and they let us use the space.
BM: You’ve been compared over here to Ride and Slowdive, but can you tell us where you draw your influences from?
VC: Plastic Venus, a local Israeli band from the late 80s early 90s. because of their guitar sound and also because they were so different from other bands around them thematically and sonically.
BM: You’ve been quite neatly pigeon holed into the ‘shoegaze’ genre – is that how you would describe your sound?
VC: We just say, “oh, it’s Israeli rock”.
BM: What about the name for the band – what does it mean? And why did you choose it?
VC: Vaadat Charigim – A committee that every institution has, especially the army in Israel, for singling out and dealing with exceptional cases, or irregular cases.
It also just sounds like we are those irregulars, since Vaadat Charigim also literaly means “group of misfits”.
BM: Most bands have something that draws them together as a unit – be it musical tastes or shared experiences. What is it that bonds you guys together?
VC: Touring mostly. Being on the road, especially in the USA, where touring is a bit rougher.
BM: You’ve just released your second album, ‘Sinking As A Stone’ which is part two of your Tel Aviv Trilogy- is there a theme or story to it?
VC: Its about being bored of Israel always sucking so much.
BM: What kind of sound were you aiming for with the recording?
VC: Something between Tim Hecker and Yo La Tengo , with some Heidegger in there somewhere in the words.
BM: You’ve got the live dates in the UK coming up next month. Can you tell us a bit about your first ever gig?
VC: Not sure, but I think it was at an underground gallery/space in Tel Aviv called The Zimmer.
BM: How would you describe your live shows?
VC: A reflection of the day we had in the van.
Catch VAADAT CHARGIM at the following.
Oct 21 Birmingham Sunflower Lounge
Oct 22 Manchester The Old Pint Pot
Oct 23 Leeds Venue tbc
Oct 24 London Shacklewell Arms
Oct 25 Brighton Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar