“Dreidel,” the lead single off Ronnie Levin’s upcoming album “I’m in love with your brother,” explores the tale of two men in love in Jerusalem. Its heartbreaking, honest narrative details the trials and tribulations of such a romance, accented with religious imagery and symbolism. It’s a story told from a first-person point of view, with lyrics lamenting over an indie rock arrangement akin to acts like Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever and Turnover.
Levin writes with a purpose, and these lyrics demand your full attention. While the musical buildup and eventual release of tension feels satisfying and even cathartic as a listener, it’s the cherry on top to an emotionally moving listening experience: the main source of that emotion being the lyrics.
“You spun me like a dreidel and left me all bruised up,” is a prime example of how Levin weaves religious ideas with raw feelings of betrayal and heartbreak. It ties two differing themes together seamlessly, and conveys such a personal story in a way that truly resonates with his audience.
His voice, smooth as silk and reaching a healthy tenor register, is full of passion, fire, and intensity as the song progresses, reaching its full gusto in the bridge right before a gnarly, emotional instrumental, then quieting down to a tender melody as the song concludes.
Over the course of the song, you ride the wave of an emotionally tormenting love— coasting off the feelings of what once was, and realizing with time what it truly is. It’s a song that resonates with anyone who has been burned in love before, and is going to be a staple in any playlist for those late night feels.
Ronnie Levin is a Tel Aviv storyteller, telling his tales through song one at a time. His music works through themes of love, loss, and his own lived experiences as a gay man in the Middle East. While acknowledging the inherently competitive world of music, Levin is gaining international attention by staying true to his story, his values, and his own individual artistry.
Written by Jess Ward