Milliblog Weeklies, Week 163 – Oct.24, 2021

Milliblog Weeklies – India’s only multilingual, weekly new music playlist.
Week 163: On Spotify | On YouTube
15 songs this week. Spotify has all 15, while I haven’t been able to add the 3 specific songs from Oh Manapenne since only the full jukebox is available. So, have added the jukebox to the playlist.

Mauj-e-Karam – Hum Do Hamare Do (Sachin-Jigar) – Hindi: A tune that sounds literally like kumbaya! It’s accentuated by the vocal ‘na-na-na’ chorus that repeats the title hook. The singers do the trick very effectively delivering the easy-on-the-ear melody – Sachet and Parampara, composers themselves. This is the only song that surfaced above the middling stuff in the soundtrack.

Oh Manapenne, Nee Yenadharuginil Nee & Sakiye – Oh Manapenne (Vishal Chandrashekhar) – Tamil: I had added both Lazy Song and Bodhai KaName to Weeklies earlier when they were released. Barring Aao Ji Aao (that, I felt, was a bit too obviously gimmicky), this is one heck of a soundtrack by Vishal! The title song’s soul is Sinduri’s incredible singing. Vishal’s melody is grace personified and if I hadn’t known the composer’s name, I’d have guessed it as A R Rahman, for a Mani Ratnam film! Punya Srinvas’ Veena too adds significant value to the song. Shakthisree Gopalan lifts Nee Yenadharuginil Nee haunting melody with an intimate performance. Vishal’s tune is thoroughly engaging, with a lovely Latino layer. In Sakiye, the melody seems to start from an anupallavi’ish tune, with Yazin Nizar backed by an impressive chorus layer. The song is warmly enveloped in guitar, complimenting the vocals brilliantly.

Mazhai – Yennanga Sir Unga Sattam (Guna Balasubramanian) – Tamil: After the earlier song from the film, Jeeraga Biriyani, composer Guna impresses again with this new song! It’s a breezy melody with a very simple, and repetitive structure. But it’s how Guna layers the two voices, Guna Balasubramanian and Malvi Sundaresan, is where the song scores beautifully. Guna’s vocals are inside a 3-line phrase that gets repeated, while it is Malvi who does the heavy-lifting around it. Even the anupallavi’s male vocals have the same sound effect that makes it a great listen.

Nenjae Nenjae – Borrder (Sam CS) – Tamil: Sam, after a period of mighty impressive work, seems to have been stuck in a rut of late. This song is considerably better than most of his recent work, and yet there seems to be something mildly off. For instance, the anupallavi, the way it starts with ‘En Kaalai Maalai’ clearly seems off and the male voice hardly sounds like Karthik! Overall though, the broader melody works.

Knockout Song – Arasiyalla Idhellam Saadharnamappa (Madley Blues) – Tamil: The song has two heavyweights behind it – no, not the composing duo, Harish Venkat and Prashanth Techno… but singer Anirudh and lyricist Vignesh Shivn! But, the composing duo too have something interesting going for the tune that sounds like a modern-day Chandrababu song with its spartan, Vaudevillian sound, but layered with some imaginative, lilting rhythm.

Preme Aakasamaithe – Rowdy Boys (Devi Sri Prasad) – Telugu: This is one of those kinds of songs that DSP hands over to a Baba Sehgal or Raghu Dixit in an earlier period, but now it goes to Jaspreet Jasz. It is built around a simple, hummable tune with one prominent hook that DSP mines for maximum impact. Here, it is the ‘Alale’ hook. Catchy while it lasts.

Mutyala Chemma Chakka – Love Story (Saluri Rajeshwara Rao and Pawan Ch) – Telugu: While the rest of the film’s soundtrack is on Aditya Music, this one song alone is on Saregama. Reason? It’s a remix! Pawan recreates Saluri Rajeshwara Rao’s 1964 song from Bobbili Yuddham in a spritely, mod version, and in Rakshita Suresh’s confident singing, it works effortlessly. I’m very surprised, though, that Saregama did not bother crediting or mentioning Saluri Rajeshwara Rao in their YouTube upload.

Modati Rojullo – Vinay S (Indipop/Telugu) – Modati Rojullo is Vinay’s debut song, but the overall package demonstrates the imagination and creativity far beyond a debut. Karunya’s voice accentuates the melody, but the song’s considerable appeal is Vinay’s tune that springs a surprise all through the pallavi the same way Sandeep Chowta’s ‘Short and Sweet’ (Kedi) did!

Ollulleru – Ajagajantharam (Justin Varghese) – Malayalam: Justin takes a traditional melody from the Mavila Community and produces a pulse-pounding electronic version that uses the vocals of Hinsha Hilari, Himna Hilari, and Salima PS very well. It’s a simple, repetitive tune with a catchy sound, and Justin’s treatment mixes the old and the new impressively. In a way, it reminded me of Charan Raj’s Salaga song Tininga Miniga Tishaa, in terms of the approach since that song utilized Siddi ethnic group’s musical style in a similar way. Also Rahul Raj’s famous song from Bachelor Party, Kappa Kappa, in terms of the sound and packaging.

Ja Ja Re – Bhoomi 2021 (Sadarang and Salim-Sulaiman) – Indipop: The composing duo pick up Naimat Khan aka Sadarang’s 18th-century bandish and in line with their musical style, produce a snazzy recreation while retaining the original’s Bhimpalasi raaga base. It’s a funky affair with the vocal prowess of Sattar Khan Langa (with backing vocals by Habib Khan Langa, Saadiq Khan Langa) and Vishal Dadlani.

Churaya – Amit Trivedi (Indipop/Hindi): I missed this song back in June. Amit composes and sings this himself, and it has the spring of a catchy ad jingle, built around the ‘Churaya’ hook. But the way he expands on the jingle-like brevity in the antara demonstrates his imagination! The backgrounds, in particular, the brass section, brings the song alive wonderfully.

Tedo Tedo & Mooch – ŠKODA Sonic Roots | Songs of Soil (Amit Trivedi) – Indipop: Amit has already dabbled heavily in Gujarati and Rajasthani folk music and sounds in his film songs. In a new series for Skoda, he goes deeper into the folk soundscape much like the Coke Studio approach. The Gujarati wedding lagna song Tedo tedo is an incredibly rhythmic affair in sync with the State’s rich dandiya musical tradition, featuring none other than Kirtidan Gadhvi. The Rajasthani track Mooch is a joyous affair building on the State’s obsession with the famous facial appendage. Amit takes a bit more creative liberty in this song and the result is something we could have easily heard in any of his film songs too. Mame Khan leads this one brilliantly with this energetic singing, complimented by Ruchika Chauhan.