Israeli authorities have cracked down heavily on vinyl records, but the impact is far from over.
The country’s music scene, the birthplace of its independent radio stations, is now in a state of total hibernation.
A few weeks ago, the head of the Israeli Ministry of Culture, Yair Rosenfeld, issued a decree that banned any record store from opening within 100 meters of a synagogue, a popular venue for worship.
The order, which was signed by Rosenfeld in early February, was the first of many such restrictions.
The ban on vinyl sales is the latest in a string of restrictive measures imposed by the current government.
Last year, Israel crackeddown on vinyl, imposing a ban on the sale of the vinyl-based product to minors.
And in March, the country’s interior minister, Moshe Kahlon, said that vinyl would no longer be allowed in schools, churches, synagogues and cinemas.
In September, he also said that “the sale of vinyl records” would no more be allowed at cinemas and cinemapartments.
Since 2014, the government has also begun restricting the availability of music streaming services such as Spotify and Pandora.
And last month, the Interior Ministry began imposing strict new licensing requirements for recording artists, limiting the number of albums they could release and restricting the way they can advertise.
Despite the restrictions, music lovers across the country have continued to flaunt the records they bought, often selling them at the record shops that still exist in the streets of Tel Aviv, which is one of the countrys most vibrant music destinations.
For years, Israel has been the music capital of the world, and many of the artists that made it big on the underground scene have been left out of the new restrictions.
Now that the music scene is largely shut down, however, the industry faces the prospect of the music that made Tel Aviv a music town, the one that started it all, will be shut down as well.