Saturday November 21, 2020

Milliblog Weeklies, Week 134 – Nov.22, 2020

Posted by Karthik

Milliblog Weeklies – India’s only multilingual, weekly new music playlist.
Week 134: On JioSaavn | On YouTube
18 songs, this week. YouTube has 17, and is missing only Ludo’s Dil Julaha because it is embedded inside a jukebox. JioSaavn playlist has 16 songs and is missing Oh Andha Naatkal ‘s Ini Oru Thollayum Illai and Chivaraku Migiledhi’s Saami Saami (both embedded below).

Meri Tum Ho & Dil Julaha – Ludo (Pritam) – Hindi: Ludo has turned out to be a wonderful album for Pritam – yet another one! Jubin Nautiyal and Ash King join their voices in Meri Tum Ho’s gorgeous melody that gains a lot from the instruments Pritam assembles. Darshan Raval-sung Dil Julaha is a lot of fun, with that captivating rhythm that, for some reason, reminded me of music from the North East.

Madhubala – Songs of Love (Amit Trivedi) – Hindi/Indipop: This is Amit at his most prolific – after Songs of Faith and Songs of Trance, here he is with another album! The first single is a pleasant departure from those earlier album sounds and is almost sparse with a solo piano in the background mostly to go with his singing. The singing is a bit flat, but Amit makes it up with the background’s emotional pull.

The Mission Paani Anthem – A R Rahman (Advertising jingle/Indipop): I thought I had become immune to most of A R Rahman’s ‘anthems’ given how monotonous they seem to have started sounding, either the ones in his films or his advertising jingles. This anthem, for Harpic, stands out as a superb exception! The core melody is very, very immersive. And given Antara Nandy’s rendition, the kids’ chorus that starts off so beautifully with those vocal effects, and the progressive build-up in the tune, Rahman has a winner here! Prasoon Joshi’s lyrics are brilliantly on point – I could imagine that ‘Paani’ and ‘Zindagaani’ callouts in
“Swachata Aur Paani
Humko Bachani Hai Ye Zindagani”
…coming from Rahman’s uniquely familiar voice too, though he doesn’t sing in this one 🙂

Dagar Dagar – Jyoti Kavi (Hindi/Indipop) – Jyoti’s debut single is a great listen and took me back to a time when A R Rahman was composing his Tamil-fused melodies for Hindi films like Kabhi Na Kabhi or Doli Saja Ke Rakhna! Her voice is apt for the melody, the melody itself is a flowing, nicely accentuated affair, but where she truly aces is the background music that is so well put together.

Bujji – Jagame Thandhiram (Santhosh Narayanan) – Tamil: If Harris Jayaraj took inspiration from Michael Jackson literally to produce his many songs, Santhosh does it the right way by getting the soul of MJ’s music aptly and concocting something very original. He has superb support from Anirudh’s singing, and Dhanush’s outstanding dance moves. Towards the end, everyone gets down to the thara-local level like only they can, in a thoroughly enjoyable twist!

Ini Oru Thollayum Illai – Oh Andha Naatkal (James Vasanthan) – Tamil: An outstanding attempt at tuning Bharathiyar’s lines, again. James is not quite correct that this is the first time these lines are being used in film music. The 1982 film Thookkumedai had music by Shankar-Ganesh and they have composed these lines too, sung by T.M.Soundarajan. The 2 versions are like chalk and cheese, though! James’ melody is beautiful, like a lovely ghazal, with extremely good singing by Karthika Vaidyanathan. As if not content with that, James also gets Chithra to sing a kavadi-sindhu style middle portion, and when she enters, the song gains a new high!

Oru Arai Unathu – Maara (Ghibran) – Tamil: When was the music of Maaa composed, really? I get a vibe of Ghibran’s earlier form in this soundtrack so far, with 2 songs – not his current style! This song’s Celtic style music and the vibrant melody is propped really well by Yazin Nizar and Sanah Moidutty’s singing. Thamarai’s lyrics are fantastic, splitting everything between yours and mine, though I first thought they are singing about a slap for me and a slap for you, before realizing they are singing about rooms 🙂

Thank You ISAI – Srinivas (Tamil/Indipop): Now, that was a highly inventive song! It’s less of a song and more of a CV/resume for singer Srinivas where he cleverly creates a coherent song out of the songs he has sung! So Tamil, Hindi, Malayalam, Telugu song names/titles merge with each other as they are listed! Creative idea, handled well as a thank you note for music, and the opportunities Srinivas got in his career.

Saami Saami – Chivaraku Migiledhi (Vivek Sagar) – Telugu: Vivek Sagar composes and sings an eclectic, hypnotic song that sounds like Thaikkudam Bridge’s music on an acid trip! The sound is both relentless and frenetic, but in a wonderfully coherent way that has superb impact!

Emito Idhi – Rang De (Devi Sri Prasad) – Telugu: This is such a delightful surprise from DSP – a song that completely belies his familiar style and actually enters the Ilayaraja zone in terms of the melody and the backgrounds! The background music is so carefully and tastefully done, particularly the use of keyboard (by Vikas Badisa) and strings (by CMU Orchestra, Chennai)! Observe the anupallavi and charanam – they both have the standard 2 lines by Haripriya, followed by 2 lines by Kapil Kapilan. But when Kapil sings in the anupallavi
“Kala laa chey jaaripokamundhe
Shila laa samayanni nilapamandhe”, the backgrounds remain without the high that DSP hits in the charanam when Kapil sings the equivalent,
“Nene unnantha varaku neetho
Ninne chirunavvu vidavadhanuko”, the keyboard sweep is quite something else! Beautiful song!

The Guntur Song – Middle Class Melodies (Sweekar Agasthi) – Telugu: Usually, the Malayalees get this template of a song based on a city (in Kerala, of course, besides the Gulf) really well. It’s great to see Sweekar nail that template. The song, sung by Anurag Kulkarni, is a lovely ode to Guntur, with a special focus on the kinds of food available! The visuals are mouth-watering, as much as the lyrics!

Ranguladdhukunna – Uppena (Devi Sri Prasad) – Telugu: This is the second song this week by DSP where he plays against type and wins spectacularly! That beautiful vocal chorus by El Fé team is the first thing that stands out wonderfully. Then, the vocals by Yazin Nizar and Haripriya (her second song this week, with DSP). The anupallavi’s gentle rhythm and the interludes are so charmingly handled! And I notice the film also stars Vijay Sethupathy!!

Bhalegundi Baalaa – Sreekaram (Mickey J Meyer) – Telugu: In a pleasant twist, Mickey’s new song sounds like trademark Devi Sri Prasad! It’s only later in the song, after the second interlude, Mickey’s touch seems apparent before getting back to DSP territory. The rhythm is straight off DSP’s repertoire, though Penchal Das’ earthy singing lifts the song considerably, while Nutana Mohan’s brief sojourn is where Mickey identifies himself.

Poganathilere – Grahanam (Anandhkumar G) – Malayalam: After the Vineet Srinivasan-sung Mizhinilavai, released last month, the new single from Grahanam too impresses! The tune has a light, uplifting feel to it, and Vaishnavi Kannan’s singing too is on the dot. That Poganathilere hook leading to the first interlude, with Vaishnavi’s humming is lovely, in particular.

Kanavukal – Enpathukalile Ebhyanmaar (Renjith) – Malayalam: A gently flowing melody by Renjith that shines with excellent use of the flute and Kerala-style rhythms in the background. Vijay Yesudas’ singing is the icing, though – it is exceptionally engaging. The melody’s raaga escapes me but that’s what made to sit up and take notice. Shades of Darbari Kaanada, perhaps? I don’t know.

Titliaan – Avvy Sra, ft. Afsana Khan (Punjabi/Indipop): Composer Avvy Sra gets an easy win given the melody’s Shivaranjani raaga base. It’s a classic template used umpteen times in film songs, but it continues to shine, with a specific allure only that raaga can offer. Afsana Khan is stupendously good with her singing!

The Mountain King – Dhruv Visvanath (Indipop): I hear Dhruv reserved this song for Bejoy Nambiar’s soundtrack for Taish when the director heard it first and requested the song. I love Dhruv repertoire a lot but the first reason why I loved this song may not be something he would have envisaged – the melody reminded me of Charukesi raaga! Fantastic song!

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