Despite the short period in which she was active musically, Inbal is considered to have had a significant influence on Israeli music.
(Photo: Rinat Dvorasky)
She was born on January 15 1971 in Rehovot to the poet Ofra Shunit and the guitarist Avraham Perlmutter when at the age of eight he exposed her to music and taught her to play the violin. Her sister Iris was a keyboardist for the band "Bearers of the Hat".
Of course, she is best known for the band "The Witches", which she formed at the end of 1992. Together with Yifat Netz and Yael Cohen, they began performing in clubs in Israel. Perlmutter wrote and composed most of the songs and served as Guitar player, Yael Cohen as drummer, and Yifat Netz as bass player. The band had its first success at the Ein Gev Festival in 1993, arranging and performing the song "Magic on the Sea of Kineret". The band's performance of the song came out on a broadcast record that Perlmutter painted the cover of. The song was broadcast extensively on various radio stations and created great exposure for the young band.
(Photo: Ronen Lalena)
In early 1994, the band recorded their first album - "Until the Next Pleasure". Corinne Elal produced the album, and all of his songs (except for "Bird" written by Cohen and "Sexual Tension" written by Netz) were written and composed by Perlmutter. The album featured energetic rock songs and was a huge success and a gold record status. The single "Until Next Pleasure" is one of the band's most prominent songs and its most famous to date.
In the middle of 1995, the band recorded their second album - "Strange Times". This time arrangements and production were done by all three. Perlmutter wrote and composed all the songs on the album, except for "Unknown Pursuit," whose lyrics were written by Cohen. With the release of the album, it was less successful than its predecessor.
The Witches continued to appear frequently, including a show in Caesarea as a warm-up for Bjork performance and in "Amphi Wohl" with Ohad Naharin.
In April 1996, the band released a mini-album called "The Witches Are Covering" with covers of songs that are beloved by the band members. There's a story that connects to the album, Annie Lennox has banned the band from including the cover version of the song "Sweet Dreams" in the mini-album and as a protest, Perlmutter distributed the song on an underground tape she designed and wrote about it "Shit Rights".
Another amazing cover version that exists on the album is the song "Shivers" by The Boys Next Door - Nick Cave's first band. Inbal loved Cave and his songs and when he came to Israel for the first time she bravely approached him and asked him to record a song with her and her band. Cave agreed and it was a dream come true for Inbal, but also and especially a groundbreaking event in Israeli music when an artist on the scale of Cave agrees to collaborate with an Israeli artist.
After the release of the album, the band went on a tour to promote it, where they hosted Dana Berger, Korin Elal, and Alona Daniel. After the release of the mini-album, the band's activity diminished greatly and their last performance took place in September 1996.
With the decline of The Witches, Perlmutter continued to pursue independent musical activity. She recorded sketches for a solo album, played in Korin Elal's shows, and recorded an album in London with Ram Orion called "Inbalance". The two intended to release the album but this did not materialize at the time.
In the album, Inbal gave expression to the collection of baby games she had in her possession, sounds of the games appear throughout the album in the various songs. The recordings were made over five days in January 1996 on a four-channel tape and all the songs were written by Perlmutter during her visit to London. On March 25, 2016, the album "Inbalance" was released for sale by Orion, with all proceeds going directly to the Animal Welfare Association of Israel.
Inbal was also part of a temporary supergroup called The Fuckers. Tal Gordon, Iggy Waxman, Asi Levy, and Inbal just wanted to play and have fun together, without production, without interventions, and without record companies. Inbal is the one who invented the name for the band but the other girls refused and only after her death did they decide to adopt it. Tal Gordon wrote: "We wanted to be like boys, do nothing with producers and record companies, put each one the 40 shekels per hour in a rehearsal room, order pizza and swear. It was kind of child's play."
(Photo: Flash 90)
Drugs were an integral part of Inbal's life and accompanied her, especially in her last period until they took center stage. With heroin, she first experienced on her trip to London at the age of 20, and in the last year and a half of her life, she was already heavily addicted. Her friends tried to help but without success. Among other things, they were right with her in rehab treatments and even collected NIS 15,000 for her to finance special treatment. Korin Elal who was with her in a relationship for a while said that at first she hid it very well and not everyone knew and until they understood what was going on they did not know what to do.
Perlmutter was killed in a car accident on October 1, 1997, at the age of 26. It happened on New Year's Eve and just one day before The Witches planned reunion appearance.
In the evening she went into her black collectible Volvo and drove towards Ramat Gan for a holiday dinner at the home of her new partner, Shrek de Mayo. She did not get there. Her car collided with a guardrail at the Rishon Lezion interchange. No stop signs were found on the road, and no evidence of drug use was found in Perlmutter's blood. The mystery surrounding her death continues to this day, more than 20 years later.
In 2023, a new documentary film about Inbal's life "If It Ends" was released. The film reveals for the first time her personal diaries, rare archive pieces, and intimate meetings with those who were closest to her. Some did not know about the power of the dark beast behind the good fairy.
"If It's Ends" dives into the soul of a groundbreaking creator who plunged into the abyss and left a mark on music and culture in Israel.
On January 15, 2021, on the occasion of what was supposed to be the 50th birthday of the late Inbal Perlmutter, the band "Fruit of the Imagination" released their debut single "In Eternity". The song was written by Dudu Rose - the band's lead singer and a devoted fan of Inbal and The Witches, more than twenty years ago, on the night he was informed of Inbal's death.