Thursday, August 16, 2007

Karma Karahana- Israeli PMT trance tracks

Elsewhere, you'd go to great lengths to avoid sufferers of PMT, or pre-menstrual tension. But to Israelis, these initials stand for Post Military Trip, and evoke an extended backpacking journey with a distinctive soundtrack. The hypnotic electronic music evolved in Goa and has supplanted bass-heavy 80s ecstasy house music. In a highly personal documentary film, director Shruti Bhardwaj examines this rite of passage and the Israeli music genre which flourishes alongside it. It's been shown on BBC and in film festivals around the world, and was reviewed in the Times of India


The most jarring scenes shows Bhardwaj learning from a news cameraman about a trance party the morning after a suicide attack in Sinai. "At 9 am, people were getting into a dark club...maybe it's a denial of the political situation...20 people were dead (in the Sinai attack) but still people danced." ...young Israelis are restless and frenzedly search for a freedom that has nothing to do with war and bloodletting.

Raves are not yet passe here - although it can be as much a moneymaking venture as a philosophy once the PM trippers come full circle at home. Bhardwaj thinks the sound jibes with something in the sabra psyche, and that the Israeli/India connection is more complicated than a shared psychedelic experience set to a beat. She compares her escape from a conservative upbringing by Indian parents abroad to the release that Israelis seek from tense daily confrontations with Palestinians.

European progressive musicians have as much popular appeal here, where the crowd is younger, as in Goa. Scandinavian and other European trance artists regularly tour Israel, inspiring a new generation of trance musicians such as BLT & Cosma, Skazi, and Astrix. There are 24/7 raves on hot summer nights in Tel Aviv and even Jerusalem. The writing is on the wall for a "Holy Rave": these ironic posters stress that "the time has come."

3 comments:

Red Bull said...

Is it sabra pschye or psychedlia? Maybe if the trance scene got better in Gaza....

Michael said...

I caught this film in a showing in London. I certainly enjoyed it. The information we see in the UK on news from Israel is often depressing - and this film has life in it - real life.. young people enjoying the dance scene. For a country where the youth are required to serve in the army, it is good that they can have the release of Trance music. Ms Bhardwaj made a great documentary - It deserves to be more widely shown

Anonymous said...

An excellent job. Shruti Bhardwaj really has an incredible eye for a story i must say. Extremly brilliant! It most definately needs to be shown more widely. She and the film deserve success. Very brave and passionate of her. Wow! That is a genius in the making.