Sunday July 1, 2012
Top recent listens (June 2012)
Neray aah, Nindiya ke paar and School di kitaab – Coke Studio Pakistan, Season 5 – Episode 3 (Overload & Rachel Vicajji; Uzair Jaswal; Bohemia)
Coke Studio’s Pakistani version continues to produce gems in the capable hands of Rohail Hyatt. Uzair Jaswal’s Nindiya ke paar beautifully leads to Nusrat’s Tere bin nahi lagda, while Bohemia’s School di kitaab is a cool hip-hop mix!
Dholna, Kandyaari dhol geet & Tora bahraam khaana – Coke Studio Pakistan, Season 5 – Episode 4 (Atif Aslam; Bohemia & Chakwal Group; Hamayoon Khan)
Episode 4 is no different either! Atif Aslam’s dependable voice helps Dholna soar, while Hamayoon Khan works his Pashto magic all over again in Tora bahraam khaana. The highlight of this episode is the superb jugalbandi between Bohemia and the wonderful Chakwal Group – Kandyaari dhol geet!
Some nights, We are young, Carry on, It gets better and Why am I the one – Fun (Some Nights)
Fun is a very recent discovery by me – I love their sound; a wonderful mix of Queen, Coldplay and BeeGees. The title song is all Coldplay, while Why am I the one is likely to remind you of BeeGees strongly. Good sound and very enjoyable album.
Kappa kappa – Bachelor Party (Malayalam – Rahul Raj)
I had added Pathirayo from this film in my May 2012 list. I had not heard the complete soundtrack back then – after listening to it, I find it necessary to add Kappa kappa too – it is super spunky and with striking choreography too. When I had tweeted that I really like Amal Neerad’s style, in terms of cinematography and choreography, I got tons of responses that those are the only 2 areas he focuses on and not the plot, which is usually lifted/copied from Hollywood or Asian films. That makes him sound exactly like the Malayali version of Bollywood’s Sanjay Gupta – a terribly unfavorable title . But he does seem to have extracted great music out of Rahul Raj, in this film.
Amar mawte, Ei to ami chai & Phiriye dewar gaan – Hemlock Society (Bengali – Anupam Roy)
Anupam Roy is definitely going from strength to strength, almost like the Amit Trivedi of Bengali music. Lopamudra’s Amar mawte has been ringing in my ears for a very long time. I heard his debut pop album wasn’t that well received and that’s really a shame since it was very good.
O Madhu – Julayi (Telugu – Devi Sri Prasad)
The only song that worked for me in this otherwise bland soundtrack by Devi Sri Prasad. The man may have assumed that his usual style is enough for this film, but he seems to be mistaken. Adnan sees O Madhu through, thankfully.
Thappaattam – Aarohanam (Tamil – K)
Only Indha vaan veli was released (via YouTube) earlier – so it was part of my May 2012 list. Here’s the ebullient Thappaattam making it to the June 2012 list. This song, sung by Ranjini Chander, K, Sharadha and Harish has an incredibly cool retro tune/flavor. The feel of the song is addictive and foot-tapping – quite a unique sound from K since he doesn’t seem to given us this sound yet.
Payphone, Daylight, The man who never lied, Love somebody, Tickets – Maroon 5 (Overexposed)
Overexposed is a fairly competent album by Maroon 5, but coming so close to their last album (Hands All Over), I guess one can take their current album title quite seriously. The sound is less edgy and far more pop’ish – Tickets, for example could easily be mistaken for a Lady Gaga track! Still, it’s not all bad – the album does work.
Chandanathennalaai & Veerali thanka pattin – Vaidooryam (Malayalam – Vidyasagar)
The typical Vidyasagar soundtrack in Malayalam – heavily raaga based and wonderfully sweet. Chandanathennalaai reminded me of Rahman’s Love Birds number Malargale malargale immediately, which led me to assume that it could be a similar mix of Hameer Kalyani and Saraswati. I may be wrong though and would love to know the actual base. Veerali thanka pattin stumped me during the raaga connection – it seems like Sreeraagam to me, but again, I’m an untrained music lover with only curiosity as my trump card. Would love to know this song’s raaga.
Belagedhu coffee, Aalochane, Smilevasi & Everybody rock to the beat – Romeo (Kannada – Arjun Janya)
One of the best Kannada soundtracks in recent times – full marks to Arjun Janya for producing a consistently enjoyable package. Every rock to the beat(u) can easily be borrowed in other South Indian languages – it has the pan-language appeal in its tune. Also, but for the credit note, I’d have assumed it is sung by Jassie Gift, but it is not!!
Anuragham, Shyaamambaram, Anuraghathin, title song & Namosthuthe – Thattathin Marayathu (Malayalam – Shaan Rahman)
Thattathin Marayathu is a great example of a director-composer combo that is in perfect sync. Right from Coffee at MG Road to Malarvadi Arts Club and now this film – Vineeth Srinivasan and Shaan Rahman have worked up a great rapport that translates into great music!
Tumhi ho bandhu, Daru desi, Yaariyaan & Luttna – Cocktail (Hindi – Pritam)
Pritam, the commercial cocktail machine is in superb form in this soundtrack. Everything just works perfectly (except the jarring and odd Second hand jawaani, of course) and Pritam particularly scores well in his choice of singers – I’d have chosen Shalmali for Tumhi ho bandhu, but the man opts for Kavita Seth, reserving Shalmali for Daaru desi.
Title song, Dhigu dhigu jabilee, Dhoodi pinja lanti pilla & Pedavanchullo prema – Tuneega Tuneega (Telugu – Karthik Raja)
It’s heartening to see Karthik Raja get his groove back. Yes, there are generous inspirations, no doubt – the title song seems very similar to Lemon Tree’s Fool’s Garden while parts of Mike testing (Be Ready) sounds similar to Zombie by Cranberries. That doesn’t take much away from this delightful soundtarck however.
Title song – Bol Bachchan (Hindi – Himesh Reshammiya)
A surprisingly simple and addictive tune – it is perhaps the repetitive nature of the tune that makes it click. Clever work by Himesh.
Nee indri & Iravugalil – Ponmaalai Pozhudhu (Tamil – C.Sathya)
Iravugalil’s guitar drawl, along with Karthik’s magical vocals makes it a charming listen. The composer takes to singing very confidently in the short Nee indri – another neat tune!
Yemito, Ye mantramo & Manasa marchipo – Andala Rakshasi (Telugu – Radhan)
Radhan makes a promising debut with Andala Rakshasi. Yemito is my personal favorite while the stinging pathos of Manasa marchipo makes it endearing.
Aaja tu aaja, Tere bina & Saawariya calling – Tanha Sa Hoon (Indipop – Lesle Lewis)
One of the early Indipop stalwarts, Leslie Lewis, seems to be trying hard to get his earlier groove back. His style didn’t work in the Indian version of Coke Studio, but he at least gets some things right in this pop album of his – thankfully.
Kandha kaara vadai & Pottadhu pathalai – Saguni (Tamil – GV Prakash Kumar)
A largely standardized soundtrack from GVP – Kandha kaara vadai rocks with its witty, satirical lyrics, while Pottadhu pathalai is a superbly catchy drunk kuthu.
Silenced by the night, Disconnected, On the road and The boys – Keane (Strangeland)
Keane’s Coldplay’ish (and Snow Patrol’ish) sound can only take them so far – Strangeland is not that promised land where the band shines best. But all isn’t lost since the album lets the band do what they do best; it’s just that this is getting into a routine. There are good songs like Silenced by the night and particularly, Disconnected that works rather well, if you like Keane’s sound.
Yaarilla yaarilla – Adduri (Kannada – V.Harikrishna)
The ony song that stood out for me in Harikrishna’s latest, with its retro sound. The song is strongly reminiscent of 80s Kannada film music and Hari does a great job in adapting it to the current trend.
Nuvvele nuvvele – Devudu Chesina Manushulu (Telugu – Raghu Kunche)
For a Puri Jagannath film, Raghu Kunche’s music is shockingly substandard. Shreya Ghoshal comes to Raghu’s rescue in just this song.