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It Takes a Nation

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Subliminal, Israel’s biggest hip-hop star, is profiled by Yoav Fromer today in Tablet Magazine. Born Yaakov “Kobi” Shimoni to immigrants from Tunisia and Iran, the 31-year-old isn’t literally a political conservative, but his message is unabashedly patriotic and nostalgic:

Subliminal’s self-proclaimed “Zionist hip-hop” has always followed an inverted model. (He half-jokingly told me, “I am the establishment.”) While Public Enemy called on listeners to “fight the power,” Subliminal instead decided to join it. “This is Israel, not America,” he explained. “If I see a cop chasing someone down the street, odds are, you will see me running along to help out the cop.”

Here is a new, unreleased track, “Fuego,” that Subliminal made available to us:

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It Takes a Nation

Today on Tablet

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