Sunday November 19, 2017

Milliblog Weeklies – NOV12.2017

Given the proliferation of singles over full soundtracks and considering the fact that I make playlists for myself every week consisting of new music (both singles and songs part of fully released soundtracks), I have decided to share those playlists as well without being constrained by the full soundtrack release or reviewing that first. I intend it to be the kind of playlists I have always made and enjoyed for myself – multilingual and runs for about an hour.

Here’s the first Weeklies playlist, on Saavn and Apple Music. Below the links, you’d find a Tweet-style (since I share it on Twitter first as a Milliblog-Twitter-Exclusive; do follow me on Twitter at @milliblog) commentary on each of the songs.

On Saavn:

Bewajah (Anirudh, Hindi): Technically, his 3rd Hindi song, after ‘Yun hi re’ (David, 2013), and the Kolaveri-redux Sachin Anthem (featuring Dhanush, 2012). This one’s a total earworm – has an incredibly catchy hook and an eye-popping vertical video!

Rafu (Tumhari Sulu, Hindi): The soundtrack’s best, easily, with Santanu Ghatak, making his Hindi debut after after the Bangla album Hingtingchhot. Delightfully mellow, featuring involved vocals by Ronkini Gupta.

Silk Song – Armaan Malik, Shirley Setia: Composed by Clinton Cerejo, the memorable ad jingle now has a slighty longer version feat. Armaan & Shirley. The song is cloyingly sweet, just like the chocolate, but it’s likeable because of the innate familiarity.

Tanha begum (Qarib Qarib Singlle, Hindi): Hussain Haidry aces lines like “Saari saari raatiya charkhe atariya; bijli vali racket se maru macchariya”. Antara Mitra does a pitch perfect retro-style rendition aided wonderfully by Rochak’s spiffy tune.

Ban ja rani (Tumhari Sulu, Hindi): Guru Randhawa spruces up his Tu meri rani (2016), with help from the former’s mixer Rajat Nagpal; this is a significantly better version that smoothens out some of the earlier version’s quirks. A cutesy Punjabi ballad.

Kukkotti kunaatti (Aruvi, Tamil): Moves seamlessly from child’s pov—Praniti’s delightfully innocent & sweet singing—to the duo singing about the child herself. Wonderfully imaginative vocal harmonies and sparkling orchestration by Bindhumalini & Vedanth.

Asaindhadum mayil (Aruvi, Tamil): Oothakkaadu Venkata Subbaiyer and Ray Charles go to a bar and order something potent! The Simhendramadhyamam-raaga original morphs into a bewildering pastiche featuring Bindhumalini’s freestyle scatting!

Hawa Hawai 2.0 (Tumhari Sulu, Hindi): Tanishk Bagchi, Hindi film music’s undisputed recreation-master thankfully uses Kavita’s original vocals in Hawa Hawai 2.0 (like Badrinath’s Tamma tamma where he used Bappi Lahiri and Anuradha Paudwal’s vocals) and hits another remix jackpot.

Jaane de (Qarib Qarib Singlle, Hindi): A serene melody by composer Vishal Mishra, befitting Atif’s dreamy voice. That “aadatan toh sochenge… hota yun toh kya hota” detour in the melody is a lovely touch!

Oru veettil (Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru, Tamil): Good old Ghibran, with a multi-layered sound, splendid chorus and strings, and excellent singing by Shashaa Tirupati and Inno Genga.

Kulebaa vaa (Ippadai Vellum, Tamil): The soundtrack’s best, with its exotic and immensely catchy sound that Imman has mastered as a template by now. Malaysian singer Kumaresh Kamalakannan and Nalini Krishnan deliver the song wonderfully.

Iraiva (Velaikkaran, Tamil): Anirudh first literally begs and prays, but soon loses patience and delivers an angry, vocal chord busting missive to God! And then Jonita joins and they both sing about each other, forgetting all about God! Thoroughly engaging tune, though!

Sevatha pulla (Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru, Tamil): Ranjith holds the song in great stead with his singing, and Ghibran’s reggae-ish sway and a particularly neat anupallavi makes the song work easily.

Baitikochi Chuste (PSPK25, Telugu): The 3rd Anirudh song in this week’s playlist, in the 3rd language! He sings this one himself and the tune is typical of his music – breezy and easy to get hooked on to.

Hasi bisi (College Kumar, Kannada): Arjun Janya usually pulls a lot of Harris Jayaraj’ish elements in his music. As soon as the energetic rhythm kicks in, you’d know what I’m talking about 🙂 Shweta Mohan handles the lush melody beautifully.

Marali marali offers Arjun’s usual arsenal of fusing desi elements like thavil and violins to a funky college song with a catchy ‘College kumara’ chorus. Naavu last bench too extends the sound, riffing off the iconic ‘We will rock you’ and adding a layer of Kerala folk percussion for added effect. Hasi bisi is lovely! Arjun tops up the wonderful melody with an energetic rhythm and Shweta Mohan handles the vocals beautifully. Nanna kuse, the soundtrack’s other melody is a lovely listen too, with its jaunty rhythm, soulful melody and expressive singing by Nithin Rajaram Shastry. Good stuff by Arjun.

Keywords: Arjun Janya, College Kumar

Listen to the songs on Saavn:

Vishal Mishra’s Khatam kahani has the same verve of a Krsna song; this too written by Krsna’s frequent collaborator, lyricist Raj Shekhar. Nooran sisters’ exuberant singing pitches the song into a racy, wacky qawali zone. Their other song, Jaane de, featuring Atif Aslam, is the complete opposite – a serene melody befitting Atif’s dreamy voice. Rochak Kohli’s Tu chale toh, with its breezy melody and Papon’s vocal range stumbles only with that awkward change in pace. Rochak’s Tanha begum is better, with Antara Mitra’s faux-retro and the mock drawl producing a funky mix. Short, winsome package by Vishal and Rochak.

Keywords: Qarib Qarib Singlle, Vishal Mishra, Rochak Kohli

Listen to the songs on Saavn:

Listen to the songs on YouTube:

Kukkotti kunaatti moves seamlessly from the child’s perspective—Praniti’s delightfully innocent “Aala marathula yeraadhey, maangaya parikkaadhey; maanga marathula yeraadhey, thengaaya parikkaadhey“—to the duo singing about the child herself. It’s a package that works wonderfully with imaginative vocal harmonies and sparkling Ukelele, violin, viola and cello. Oothakkaadu Venkata Subbaiyer and Ray Charles go to a bar and order something potent, in Asaindhadum mayil ondru! The Simhendramadhyamam-raaga original morphs into a bewildering pastiche featuring Bindhumalini’s freestyle scatting set to Balu’s scintillating trumpet, Fedrick Rosario’s accordion and Naveen Nabeer Kumar’s bass guitar. Cement kaadu seems uncomfortably filmy, though Bidhumalini’s singing and that stunning interlude lift things significantly. Bindhumalini aces Anbin kodi too, with her uninhibited scatting and soaring phrases easily outshining the limits of the tune. Merku karaiyil is the soundtrack’s most affecting melody, with an almost-Bengali outlook and almost taking a page out of Sean Roldan’s book, with a lovely banjo-sarangi mix. Hemanth and Chandran, on violins, join Bindhumalini in the Aruvi theme to close things on a brilliant high – a new-age variant of a Thadhaane folk thread. Bindhumalini and Vedanth Bharadwaj, given their decidedly offbeat musical inclination, add a beautiful hue to Aruvi’s soundtrack that is completely unique and highly original.

Keywords: Aruvi, Bindhumalini Narayanaswamy, Vedanth Bharadwaj, 200, #200

Listen to the songs on YouTube:

Guru Randhawa spruces up his Tu meri rani (2016) into Ban ja rani, with help from the former’s mixer Rajat Nagpal; a significantly better version. Tanishk uses Kavita’s original vocals in Hawa Hawai 2.0 and hits another remix jackpot. His original, Manva likes to fly, is an ebullient tune articulated with infectious enthusiasm by Shalmali. Farrata, by Amartya Rahut is a high-energy song brimming with breathless enthusiasm. Santanu Ghatak, making his Hindi debut after the Bangla album Hingtingchhot, produces the soundtrack’s best, the delightfully mellow Rafu, featuring beautifully involved vocals by Ronkini Gupta. Tumhari Sulu nails its multi-composer sound brilliantly!

Keywords: Tumhari Sulu, Laxmikant-Pyarelal, Guru Randhawa, Rajat Nagpal, Tanishk Bagchi, Amartya Rahut Bobo, Santanu Ghatak

Listen to the songs on Saavn:

Listen to the songs on YouTube:

Ranjith holds Sevatha pulla in great stead, with a reggae-ish sway and a particularly neat anupallavi. Oru veettil and O sathiye are good old Ghibran, with multi-layered sound, splendid chorus and excellent singing by Shashaa Tirupati and Inno Genga, and Armaan Malik, respectively. Laali laali extends that sound, with a catchy background that carries enjoyable nuances. Ghibran showcases his incredible sense of sound in Theeran da, with a punchy swagger in orchestration, while Tinga tinga, with its obviously item-song’ish outlook is passable, with that foot-tapping sound. Ghibran’s music is never uninteresting, but it can be good enough, like this soundtrack.

Keywords: Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru, Ghibran

Listen to the songs on YouTube:

Apple Music playlist of 50 songs (except the Telugu song from Sarovaram, Amrutham kurisina that’s not available on Apple Music)

Single Saavn playlist of all the 51 songs:


Helicopter – Ranchi Diaries (Tony Kakkar)

Thodi si jagah, Dhundlo tum and Title song – Tu Hai Mera Sunday (Amartya Rahut)

Main kaun hoon, Meri pyaari Ammi, Sapne re, O re manwa, Gudgudi and I’ll Miss You – Secret Superstar (Amit Trivedi)

O mere sanam – The House Next Door (Girishh G)

Jogi, Tu banja gali Benaras ki and Pallo latke – Shaadi Mein Zaroor Aana (Arko, Raees & Zain-Sam, Rashid Khan)

Ittefaq se – Ittefaq (Bappi Lahiri and Tanishk Bagchi)
Yet-yet another recreation of an old Bollywood song. Yet another recreation by recreation-master Tanishk Bagchi. But, this one’s quite nice too, like Tanishk’s Tamma tamma recreation, with him sprucing up the original’s elements cleverly in a way that doesn’t dilute the effect but actually accentuates it. Good choice of singers – Jubin Nautyal and Nikhita Gandhi.

Na jaa – Jia Aur Jia (Nisschal Zaveri)
The only song that stands out in this otherwise lackluster album. The only song composed by Nisschal Zaveri as well. That he picks Nandini Srikar to deliver one version helps it sell the song’s introduction and it doesn’t disappoint, with its soft, ghazal-like outlook and ambient backgrounds. The other version by Asees Kaur is a good listen too.


Rail aaraaroo, Aei arakka and Aram seiyya virumbu – Nenjil Thunivirunthal (D.Imman)

Semparuthi, Ennenna kaatchigal – Indrajith (KP)

Kulebaa vaa, Thodra paakkalaam – Ippadai Vellum (D.Imman)

Kaarigai kanne – Aval (Girishh G)


Adhilekka and O kshanam – Oxygen (Yuvan Shankar Raja)

What Amma What Is This Amma – Vunnadhi Okate Zindagi (Devi Sri Prasad)
In an otherwise banal soundtrack that does nothing to Devi’s already-limited range, he produces his own Kolaveri in What Amma What Is This Amma. He sings it himself too and sets the tune to an easily likeable rhythm and instantly sing-along tune.

Amrutham kurisina – Sarovaram (Sunil Kashyap)
Sunil’s music in the song reminded me of Chakri’s style – a simple, highly melodious tune that works in perfect sync with the simple, lilting rhythm. The choice of singers elevates the song considerably – Hemachandra and Harini!

Ala Meda Mida – Next Nuvve (Sai Karthik)
Yazin Nizar’s involved vocals definitely help, but beyond that Sai’s choice of layering a constant veena backdrop helps significantly in the pleasant melody.

Ishtam and Nijama – Good Bad Ugly (Harshavardhan)
I started listening to the 2 songs of Good Bad Ugly almost with no ishtam, since I had no idea what to expect from composer Harshavardhan. But the way Ishtam started, I sat up straight! It sounded just like a Raja intro! Harsha’s singing almost kills the song, but the Raja signs are all over the song, including the interludes and a gorgeous tune! In Nijama too, Harsha’s singing is the weakest point, but that rhythm is straight out of Raja’s 80s repertoire!! Pleasantly surprised!

Supere and Nijame kani – Mama O Chandamama (Munna Kasi)
The 2 songs that truly stand out owe a lot to Ilayaraja! Supere has the template of Ram bam bam while Nijame is a photocopy of Vamsi-Raja’s Jigi jigi jigija, that Mayamalavagowla masterpiece from Chettu Kinda Pleader. To be fair, both sound pretty good, but still like vague imitations of Raja’s music.


Aalayal tara venam, Aalayal tara venam Reprise, Aigiri Nandini, Shiva Tandav, Kandu nee, Oru vaanchi paattu, Thaalolam, Roshomon, Sajan more ghar aaye, Sita Kalyanam, Separation and Karaiyaadhe – Solo (Masala Coffee, Thaikkudam Bridge, Ragini Bhagwat, Abhinav Bansal, Agam, Prashant Pillai, Filter Coffee, Sooraj Kurup, Govind Menon and Gaurav Godkhindi)

Manjaniyum, Mele manathu – Chakkaramaavin Kombathu (Bijibal)


Ondhe jeevana, Kshanvu kooda and Ninna haage – Gowdru Hotel (Yuvan Shankar Raja)

Kodeyondara Adiyalli – Raju Kannada Medium (Kiran Ravindranath)
Kiran’s song and, in particular, the song’s picturization showcases the fabulous landscape of Karnataka. Sonu Nigam is obviously the clear highlight of the dulcet melody.

There’s more sound-led glitz in Endhira logathu sundariye than a cohesive tune. Sid and Shashaa’s voices are digitally mauled, perhaps owing to the ‘robot’ theme, a musical cue that plagued Endhiran‘s soundtrack too. Madhan Karky’s enjoyably clever lyrics doff the hat to ‘computerized Rajini’ (KaNini Rajini nee!) and a 3-word phrase that fits his father’s famously controversial 3-word phrase’s meter – ‘Indiran thottathu mundhiriye’ from Raja Paarvai’s Andhi mazhai pozhigiradhu. Raajali, Rahman’s 2nd song featuring the bird (after Achcham Yenbadhu Madamaiyada’s Rasaali) works well as an Arima arima follow-up, with a similar musical grandeur. A customary soundtrack, quality-wise and number-wise.

Keywords: 2.0, Endhiran, Endhira logathu sundariye, Raajali, A.R.Rahman, A R Rahman

Listen to the songs on Saavn:

Listen to the songs on YouTube:

Manjaniyum has the same enthusiasm and liveliness of Mullavalliyum Thenmaavum’s Dhumthanakkadi, besides a similarly upbeat percussion. The children who sing it—Bijibal’s son Devdutt and Sreya Jayadeep—completely own the infectious rendition. Alanjoriyana‘s gentle and lilting melody is thoroughly endearing too and Bijibal’s own singing has a rawness that makes it all the likeable. Bijibal’s trademark old-world charm is beautifully on cue in the breezy Mele manathu, and it alternates between that and a more mod and vibrant sound—including splendid strings—effortlessly, in Subha’s excellent vocals. Bijibal has nailed this very-native and warm melody sound by now… it continues to be so enjoyable!

Keywords: Chakkaramaavin Kombathu, Bijibal

Listen to the songs on Saavn:

Arko’s Jogi gets 3 versions, and the pleasant song’s melodic soul comes out best with Shafqat’s version! The other 3-version song, Rashid Khan’s engaging Tu banja gali Benaras ki has all 3 variants in good stead – Asit Tripathy, Asees Kaur and Shafqat. JAM8’s Main hoon saath tere is a passable poor-man’s Dharma ballad. Raees & Zain-Sam’s Pallo latke remix is a fairly entertaining fusion of Rajasthani and Punjabi, topped with Faziluria tipsiness. Anand Raaj Anand’s Mera intkam dekhegi is a hysterical outburst and is clearly a remnant from the earlier decade. Decent enough soundtrack despite the multiple composer palette.

Keywords: Shaadi Mein Zaroor Aana, Arko, JAM8, Raees & Zain-Sam, Rashid Khan, Anand Raaj Anand

Listen to the songs on Saavn:

Listen to the songs on YouTube:

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