Milliblog Weeklies, Week 105 – Feb.09, 2020

Milliblog Weeklies – India’s only multilingual, weekly new music playlist.
Week 105: On JioSaavn | On YouTube
12 songs this week. JioSaavn has all the songs, while YouTube is missing just one (since it is inside a jukebox – embedded below) – Marali Manasaagide, from the Kannada film Gentleman.

Mehrama – Love Aaj Kal (Pritam) – Hindi: Pritam is on his way producing an encore for the film of the same title, a decade later. In Darshan Raval and Antara Mitra’s highly expressive vocals, his music booms through the sedate melody with an extra punch in the background rhythm.

Rab Raakha – The Yellow Diary (Indipop/Punjabi): The Yellow Diary had a prolific run in 2018, with both Marz and Izafa, two 3-song albums. They are back after drawing a blank in 2019, but the form is intact. Rajan Batra, the lead vocalist, continues to remind me of Rekha Bhardwaj (male version of Rekha Bhardwaj, that is), and that is a mighty engaging vocal style! The band’s tune continues to be thoroughly interesting.

Mar Jaayein Hum, Ghar Bhara Sa Lage & Shukrana Gul Khile – Shikara (Sandesh Shandilya & Abhay Rustom Sopori) – Hindi: Sandesh Shandilya can always be trusted to produce an elegant soundtrack and with his long-time collaborator, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, all the more so. Mar Jaayein Hum is the soundtrack’s best, literally flowing oh-so-beautifully t the sound of water! Papon and Shradha Mishra are absolutely fantastic! Papon and Shreya Ghoshal handle Irshad Kamil’s lived-in experiences in the lines of Ghar Bhara Sa Lage, with the tune harking back to an older period in time. Santoor exponent Abhay Rustum Sopori’s Shukrana Gul Khile is all-Kashmir… the sound we associate most with Kashmir, with a haunting, foot-tapping Central-Asian sound.

Sila Naal – Titanic (Nivas K Prasanna) – Tamil: Yaazhini, from the film was first released as a short promo in 2018, and then the full song was released in 2019! In between, another song was released as Promo song, Kaalamum Kettu Pochu, in 2018! At last, it looks like the film is actually being released, given that the full soundtrack is now out. If you go past the lovely Yaazhini (about which I wrote in February 2019, and the corny faux-Carnatic music’ness of Kaalamum, the only other song that stands out is Sila Naal, that rides heavily on Abhay Jodhpurkar’s extraordinary singing. The tune reminded me of A.R.Rahman’s music for K.Balanchander in Paarthaale Paravasam… not any single song, but the overall ethos of that soundtrack.

Gaandu Kannamma – Vivek-Mervin (IndiPop/Tamil): Let me begin with clearing the fact that the first word in the title is not the abuse in Hindi, but in Tamil (!), which means ‘getting annoyed/angry’. Having said that, this is a gently lilting and catchy song, even as the duo is known for far more energetic numbers. But this one’s good too, in a different way – I’m glad that they are exploring music beyond films!

Hey Konjum Maaya – Oththaikku Oththa (Justin Prabhakaran) – Tamil: The first single from the film was an unabashed throwback to another era, almost as if the song leapt out from R.Parthiban’s Sarigamapadani. Thankfully, Justin does far better in the 2nd single! The slow Latino dance sound works very well for Nikhita Gandhi and Gowtham Bharadwaj’s singing.

Nee Parichayamutho & Venakane Unna – Choosi Choodangaane (Gopi Sundar) – Telugu: Even as Gopi is recycling his Malayalam material successfully in World Famous Lover, he comes up with a gem of a little soundtrack for Choosi Choodangaane. Probably owing to Madhura Audio’s relatively poorer distribution, I stumbled on it only when someone pointed it out and I found that some singles have been available since late last year! Sid Sriram-led Nee Parichayamutho is a delightful listen even if it is so, so Gopi’ish, with very familiar sounds from his repertoire. Venakane Unna too has many shades of Gopi’s standard sound, particularly in the anupallavi, but it is a gorgeous tune made even better by Chinmayi’s singing. There’s a lot of vocalizing in both interludes (the 2nd one, featuring thavil is particularly lovely) that I feel is by Gopi himself, going by the voice.

Marali Manasaagide – Gentleman (Ajaneesh Loknath) – Kannada: Ajaneesh’s use of the rhythm easily makes this song hugely interesting! The beats are wonderfully inventive, and they delightfully change track in the anupallavi, before getting back to the original one. To some extent, Sanjith Hegde and C.R.Bobby take a backseat in front of such a flashy use of the beats!

No Shame – 5 Seconds of Summer: A new single (the 3rd) from the band’s upcoming album, CALM. The video sees lead vocalist Luke Hemmings fake his own death… and other things people do for the sake of social media posturing! The sound, with a steady thumping, is a catchy affair.