The Schmooze

Monday Music: Yiddish and Metal, Together Forever?

Courtesy of Dibbukim

It’s almost too fitting that the band Dibbukim comes from Sweden. I don’t know that much about metal, but in my research I’ve found out that the country is home to such bands as Opeth, Amon Amarth, and Hammerfall. I’ve also watched a few episodes of the Adult Swim cartoon Metalocalypse, which, with Skwisgaar Skwigelf as lead guitarist of the fictional band Dethklok, reinforces the impression of Sweden as a mecca of heavy music.

What seems less fitting is that Dibbukim’s songs are not just in Yiddish, but are re-worked versions of Yiddish classics. On their first full-length album, “Az a Foygl un a Goylem Tantsn” (“As a Bird and a Golem Dance”), the Skåne län-based quartet takes such chesnuts as Itzik Manger and Abraham Ellstein’s “Yidl Mitn Fidl,” Abraham Goldfadn’s “Rozhinkes Mit Mandlen” and Herman Yablokoff’s “Papirosn,” and turns these familiar songs into guitar-heavy scream fests.

Listen to ‘Rozhinkes Mit Mandlen’:

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Monday Music: Yiddish and Metal, Together Forever?

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