Throughout the world, there are numerous scenes in music that go ignored or fall to the wayside. Israeli’s rock scene though, has stood out with its plethora of artists, and Tamar Aphek is one of the more prominent faces of Israel’s contemporary rock.
Aphek, a musician with years of vocal and piano training and later acquiring a degree in law studies, made a 180-degree shift picking up an electric guitar for a complete change. Performing in local groups like Carusella and Shoshana, Aphek honed her skills and never looked back. Aphek reminisced on that discovery of the guitar with a simple purchase. “I remember when I bought my first really cheap, small amplifier, and my first shitty guitar,” she says. “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. It was the feeling of holding a weapon.”
She now steps out on her own with her eponymous debut, All Bets Are Off (Kill Rock Stars) which is set for release sometime in January 2021. Naming the album for her was a simple process. She offers:
“I chose the name ‘all bets are off’ long before the COVID 19 pandemic became part of our life. The name meant to symbolize uncertainties in life in a way that deepens the cognitive dissonance one feels when inconsistency and contradictions are tackled, either on a personal level or within a society. Now, few months deep in the Corona crisis, I can’t help thinking about the prophetic messages of this name. I guess this expression can relate to a situation in which one factor alone, namely a little virus, can change everything, and that former assumptions no longer apply.”
In anticipation of the album, Tamar Aphek shares the first single “Show Me Your Pretty Side,” driven by sparse guitar notes, accentuated by horns, and a rhythm section that handles so much more than simply keeping the pace, with deeply soothing bass notes that remain entrancing throughout.