Miami Boys Choir (Mi La’Hashem Eilai) Review

General — By on June 30, 2011 4:44 pm

I reviewed Yavoh, which seemed liked yesterday to me, I’m surprised how fast this new album came out. I know it’s been two years, but after a successful album, you usually want to take your time and really tweak the follow up album so that it has much success as the previous one.

I see that Yerachmiel Begun followed the same format as the last album except for one slight mistake. Miami Yavoh had a killer 1-2-3 punch with Ayoim V’Noirah, Me’im Hashem & Yavoh. Only after these 3 songs did he introduce a slow song (Mheira). This time around he has Shema Yisrael, Mi LaHashem Eilai and… Yosis? Yosis belonged at number 4 behind Vtahair which is similar to Yavoh. His song order choice killed the flow for me.

Shema Yisrael – I like the combination of Hebrew and Yiddish in this song, it has the same rhythm as Ayoim V’Noirah from the last album and it’s a great opener, giving me high hopes for this album.

Mi La’Hashem Ailai – The intro is ridiculously long, but the song itself is a good song. Not as good as Me’im Hashem, the English song from Yavoh, but it’s good. My favorite part is the wordless section of this song. Towards the end, the lyrics turn into “Lai Lai’s”, and it’s very “pretty”.

Yosis – Despite my comments in the beginning, I want everyone to know that I happen to really like this song, I just think it’s in the wrong place. I know I shouldn’t pick favorites, but I like Sol Ayal’s voice the most of any of the soloists. He sings the second solo in this song. This song has potential to be sung during dinner at weddings, let me know if you hear it!

V’taher– This is my favorite song on the album. It has the same camp like, cheer song feel to it, much like Yavoh. Listen to Sol Ayal again, he has the first solo, it’s a really clear, sweet voice, without any whine or croak-like sound to it. I would definitely like to see this on the next Step-It-Up game!

Ashrai – This is hand down, my least favorite song on the album. It’s not a bad song by any means, I just feel that it doesn’t go anywhere. The best part about this song is the cool ending.

Torah Tavlin – Talk about a long song… 7 Minutes, really? Hard to find time like that unless you’re in the car or in the kitchen. This is the staple Torahdike (no pun intended) song on Miami albums. I like that Begun tries to incorporate meaningful and thought-provoking songs in his albums. He keeps Jewish music, Jewish. If you have 7 minutes, it happens to be a gorgeous song.

Oh Hashem – Of course, after the heartfelt song comes the techno beat? It’s a 5:33 second song, but the first minute is a seriously long intro. This song is fantastic. I don’t think I have ever heard a good fast English song until now. The soloists are amazing, and the harmonies are outstanding.

Hatov – This song has been in a friend of mine’s  since the Pesach concert, and now it’s finally available to listen to over and over. However, I warn you, this is a tediously slow song, but good. Thank G-d he kept it relatively short (under 5 minutes). The chorus is the real bread and butter of this song and it goes on and on and on, sounding better each time; unless you’re my wife, who doesn’t want to hear it for the 1,000th time.

Melech – This song reminds me of Galei (Yavoh) and Revach. It has that pumping hora beat, but unfortunately it’s not as good as either one of those songs. Also, there’s a part of the song where the soloist is a tad bit too high and it hurts my ears every time. It’s not his fault, he’s an amazing soloist, but the part that was given to him was a bad choice.

Ki Lecha – You have to be a hardcore Miami fan to really enjoy this one. It’s long and drawn out, much like Torah Tavlin, but it’s not as good of song, which is probably why it’s the tenth song on the album.

Ad Musai – Begun brings back the classic Miami sound with this song. It sounds as if it came off the Yerushalayim or Simcha Song album. It’s not an amazing song, but it’s nice to hear the classic sound, it make you want to listen to the older stuff.

Mi La’Hashem Ailai (Hebrew) – On this track we hear the debut of the Eretz Yisrael (Miami) Boys Choir. They sing the title track in Ivrit. Nothing Special. The Soloists are pretty good, but not as good as the American soloists.

Final Note: This is a great album. In my opinion, it’s not as good as Yavoh, but it has definitely grown on me fast. The edge it has over Yavoh is the soloists. This album has possibly the best combo of soloists in Miami history.

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  1. avrami says:

    I think you criticized the album too much!! Its a great album from Miami’s BEST every song is great and i think it’s a step up from Yavo!!!!!!! One more thing the slow songs are perfect and not too long its just that you dont have patients!!!!!! Listen to it again when you are in a better mood and have more time!!!!

  2. Chavi says:

    I love the CD!!! I really enjoyed the soloist and was glad to hear Yair Kenig in Hatov, he was one of my favorite soloist. D.Pearlman also has a really nice voice. I wish that Yehuda Gorkin would have had more solos because he has a really nice, sweet voice.
    Overall great album, I can’t stop listening to it.

  3. Rachel says:

    what ru talking about jm! This cd is ten times better then yavo…the songs are on a whole different level

  4. GPL says:

    I’m a big Miami fan; here are some comments on your review and the new album in general:

    Shema Yisroel is slightly more uptempo than Ayom V’nora. YB took a few risks here, with the opener containing words that are hard to understand and pronounce. I think it’s a very innovative take on the standard Shema Yisroel songs we hear often.

    I don’t really think that Mi Lashem Elai and Me’im Hashem can be compared to each other. MH seems to be more introspective, hence its soft vocal tones and steady beat throughout. MLE is more of an anthem and increases in power and tempo as the song progresses and features the adult choir. . MLE also lays a heavier focus on solos than MH. The quality of the vocal arrangements on this song is top-notch, but it would have been better if each verse were sung by one soloist, not four.

    Not too thrilled about Yosis. Miami already has a Yosis and a Mi Adir, so when I heard it I felt “what’s the point?” The tune reminds me a lot of Esa Einai from Yavoh.

    Agree with you about V’taher Libeinu- it’s a great song which could easily have been featured on an earlier Miami album, but the updated quality of the music and vocals (the guitar solos, the held note on “lo’ad” and the background vocals during the verse (kadsheinu))make it fresh and exciting.

    I happen to think Ashrei Ish is an interesting selection. not really what you would expect from Miami, but it’s very catchy.

    Torah Tavlin has that old-school Miami feel and it’s nice to hear some fresh lyrics.

    Oh Hashem has fantastic music and vocal arrangements, but the lyrics aren’t all that sophisticated. Also, I think YB could have thought up a better title than “Oh Hashem”..

    I think Hatov is a stunning song, but my only complaint is the percussion during the second round of the chorus. Not necessary, and in my opinion, rather intrusive.

    While the tune and style of Melech are similar to Revach and Galei, this song was clearly designed to be more chilled, and “comfortable” rather than serve as a concert opener like the others.

    I happen to think that Ki Lecha is the best slow song on the album. The tune is beautiful and the words haven’t been used before. The high notes are hit perfectly, especially Dovid Pearlman’s solo. It reminds me of the old Asher Bara from many moons ago.

    I agree that Ad Mosai fits into the “Simcha Song” era of Miami, but why use a posuk talking about Hashem’s wrath??

    The Hebrew version of Mi Lashem Elai didn’t do it for me either.

    The soloists on this album appear to be exceptionally well trained, and I particularly enjoy Dovid Pearlman and (surprisingly) Jeremy Hershkowitz. I think that David Charendoff and Sruli Rubin were overused and Yehuda Gorkin was majorly underused. Most of Charendoff’s solos should have gone to Gorkin, and it would have been nice to hear another low voice besides Rubin. I was impressed at how little Yerachmiel sings on the album, and was surprised at the absence of trios that have been prominent on Miami albums of late.

    All in all it’s a great album, though not as iconic as Yavoh, but very innovative in its own right.

    Feel free to comment.

  5. Sara says:

    I don’t think this review was too critical. The album is a very good one, but it’s not perfect. I feel like I can’t trust the reviews where every song gets a gushing response. Even the best composers have hits and misses. Personally though I felt that Ashrei and Ad Musai were great songs that have gotten me pumped for some long walks I’ve had to take lately. I’m glad I bought this album!

  6. Leah says:

    i dont agree with quite a few of things you said! ..this album happens to be the best ever! Sol Ayal has an amazing voice but it is not sweet and it is a drop croaklike..Ashrei Ish is my sisters favorite song! Ki lecha is my favorite slow song and its better that the songs are longer because you get to enjoy them for more time!! The introuduction to Oh Hashem happens to be extremely cool! all in all the album is amazing and enjoy!

  7. JM Derech says:

    Avrami – It’s not about being in a better mood; no album is perfect and this album is no exception. If I reviewed everything without any constructive criticism, then it would be a waste of a review. I have to be objective and look at each song individually.

    Chavi, A lot of people seem to have wanted to hear more of Yehuda Gorkin, I’ll have to listen for him again and see what the hype is about.

  8. Leah says:

    i think nobody is looking for perfection…i think the fact that there is a lot to say about this cd shows that its a good solid album (something that is quite rare these days) i mean come on! this is the third review already! enjoy;)

  9. chaim says:

    my last comment for now
    is it just me, i dont recognise any of the boys on the cover who was on the yovoh dvd from just 2 years ago — strange?

  10. chaim says:

    also what i love about miami songs is that they always have a really funky bass slap to the songs, they are just SOOO funky :)

  11. chaim says:

    woa.. i know ive sent so many comments but im just listening to the cd whilst comenting – this is my final i promise, can i just say your taste in music is SO different to mine LOL
    for example `ashrei` i simply love that style of funk music
    and the song before it `vtahar` i wasnt too big on

    each to their own no?

    but my favourite mbc songs are the `ayom vnorah` and `adon olom` type uplifiting happy songs..

    not rockish kind of songs if that makes sense lol

  12. cra says:

    I must comment, I love Sol Ayal’s solos. On the album, or in concert, he’s an all-time favorite.
    His solos are genuine, and he sings well live. GREAT JOB.

  13. menachem zahavi says:

    the bigest mistake of this reveiw is compearing mi lashem ailai to yavo by comparing the 2 you sound your criticizing the cd

  14. Leah says:

    I looove this cd! I dont think David Charendoff is overused. I love how he sings. I agree that Yehuda G. could’ve used more solos. My favorite soloists are Sol and David Charendoff. Feel free to comment!

  15. rochel says:

    anyone have the english lyrics to me lahashem eali?

  16. Layala says:

    Up upon the mountain
    With holiness around him
    Moshe Rabbeinu learned of his nation’s fall
    And then upon returning
    A fire within him burning
    His words resounding who would come
    To answer his call

    Mi Lashem Alei
    Who will be on His side
    Turn to the One above
    Serve Him with trust and love
    Live by His law with awe and pride

    Lashem Esa Einei
    How can our souls deny
    The road to a life complete
    Just step to your inner heartbeat
    It’s calling Mi Lashem Alei

    The Greek rule was so daunting
    Sacrifice so haunting
    But the courage of one leader
    Who would dare to take a stand
    And in that golden moment
    Mattisyahu brought atonement
    He chose those solemn words again
    That rang throughout the land


    So the money and the music and the culture are
    What we thought we couldn’t live without
    But just maybe we’re forgetting
    What it’s really all about

    Oh the sickness and the struggles of economy
    Many children have been pulled away
    But the answer is the question
    That can truly save the day


    Shout out so our faith will show
    We can shine in the Torah’s glow
    Never can it lead us wrong
    Forever will it make us strong
    Sing so all the world will know.

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