Apifera is: Nitai Hershkovits (keys), Yuval Havkin aka Rejoicer (keys), Amir Bresler (drums) and Yonatan Albalak (bass). Accomplished solo artists in their own right, the four musicians have come together for their debut album Overstand, out this October. Named after a variety of bee-attracting orchid, Apifera create organic-sounding structures, harmonies and arrangements intended to reflect the rich variety and equilibrium of the natural world.
While Overstand is the quartet’s first full-length as Apifera, the four artists have played together on several Stones Throw recordings. Yuval’s albums as Rejoicer, Energy Dreams and Spiritual Sleaze, featured contributions from the rest of the band, and Apifera collaborated with funk legend Steve Arrington for his upcoming album Down To The Lowest Terms: The Soul Sessions, out in September.
Apifera’s influences range from the folk music of their home country Israel, to Impressionist composers Ravel and Satie, traditional music from Sudan and Ghana, and the transcendental jazz of Sun Ra. Working intuitively, the quartet wrote and recorded Overstand mostly live in just three days, and the final album includes minimal overdubbing. “Orchestrating is a big part of our sound,” says Nitai. “We paid a lot of attention to the textures, discussing timbres and temperatures in detail throughout the recording process.”
Drawing on real-life spiritual and psychedelic experiences, often intertwined with nature, as a springboard for their music, Apifera showcases a sound “more like a lucid dream than reality”, as Nitai puts it — free, improvisatory, and live.