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Ninet Tayeb Explores Her Struggle With Anxiety In 'Self Destructive Mind' Video: Premiere

Ninet Tayeb
Daniel Kaminsky

Ninet Tayeb

Ninet Tayeb wanted to get up close and extremely personal in the video for her "Self Destructive Mind," premiering exclusively below. Her husband and regular musical collaborator, Joseph E. Shine, volunteered to direct, and Tayeb agreed -- albeit with a degree of ambivalence.

"He knows me better than anyone, I think, and he said, 'I'm going to make a video that will show the way I see you in my eyes,'" the Israeli-born singer and actress, now based in Los Angeles, tells Billboard. "I was like, 'OK...but you better watch it.' (laughs) It's the first video he directed, so I'm taking the risk. We do almost everything together in terms of music. He's a very, very talented man and I trust him, so I told him, "Let's do it. Let's see what you got...'"

The "Self Destructive Mind" video is a slow-burning clip blending acting and dance that chronicles Tayeb's struggle with anxiety. "I was having a lot of panic attacks in my life," says the Israel Idol and MTV Europe Music Awards winner, who's released five albums and collaborated extensively with Steven Wilson, among others. "I'm very exposed. I'm not wearing makeup or anything. The dancing part is trying to explain what's happening in my mind while I'm having these attacks. This whole subject is all around, so we wanted to deliver something that will be real, no masks and filters, for better or for worse.

"I just really want people to feel something when they watch it. They can hate it, but they can tell, 'Yeah, OK, this is the shit. She's not hiding anything...'"

"Self Destructive Mind" is the first single from Tayeb's sixth album, which she and Shine are currently plotting out. "We have a lot of songs, 'cause I'm writing all the time," she reports. "We just need to choose the right songs and then not try to do more than what the song needs. For me it's really important to listen to the song, what it wants to say. It's not about me -- it's about the music and the lyrics." Tayeb hopes to have the album out next year, but before that her acting will be spotlighted again in January, when Netflix begins streaming When Heroes Fly, an Israeli series in which she portrays the girlfriend of a military veteran suffering from PTSD that took the top prize at the CanneSeries awards this year.

"I'm so proud of this one," says Tayeb, who has acted in several other TV series and the 2009 film The Assassin Next Door. "For me to take this role, I told the director that, 'It scares the shit out of me. I don't know how I'm gonna do it.' He said, 'OK, if you're scared that's a good thing. Let's do it.' When I take on anything, whether it's a role in a movie or a song or a collaboration I'm doing, I need to feel like it's really my everything. That's how it went on working on this role. This series is about so many things. I think a lot of people can feel connected to it when they see it, so I can't wait until it's on Netflix so it can reach more people."