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Bengali Music Releases from the first half of April 2020- Reviewed

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Gun Gun Gaiche – Arko Mukhaerjee 

Arko Mukhaerjee never fails to surprise with his depth and understanding of the world. This beautiful and calm song, built on the twinkling notes of a ukulele and complementing chords of an acoustic guitar, basically speaks about the peaceful co-existence of all life forms on this planet. Arko’s endearing voice paints the picture of a utopia where nature is buzzing and alive with the sounds of mirth, not battered down by the unrelenting pace of urban development. The video was shot in a village in rural Bengal, also invoking what we are leaving behind in our quest for success.

Rating– 8/10

Phaguner Aagun – Acharya Sanjay Chakraborty 

A quintessential Bengali song following in the tradition of contemporary music that has its roots in the rich musical heritage of Bengali cinema, ‘Phaguner Aagun’ starts with a surprising movement that is an ode to the blues, with a playful intro on the harmonium. The singer Kinjal seems to be genuinely enjoying himself as he brings out the required emotions. The tabla is the central rhythm nerve, which gives space to a differing arrangement at the bridge. All in all, the song leaves the listener with a warm and pleasant feeling.

Rating– 9/10

Ke Diyechhe Bish – Jayati Chakraborty 

A somber mood invoker, this song, which talks about the poison that is wreaking havoc all around the world now, strikes deep in dark places. Courting themes of life, death and companionship, Jayati’s trained voice finds the right amount of empathy to convey the sorrow and worry. The arrangement is primarily classical, with the tabla taking central rhythm duties. A sarod colours the palette with bright yet poignant notes, creating a shimmering effect along the haunting soundscape of the string section. The video contains stills from across the world of people wearing masks and taking other precautionary measures.

Rating– 8/10

Songopone – Tanmay Sarkar 

This song is a simple declaration of love and basking in the warmth of finding new love when everything is butterflies and marshmallows. From talking about the beautiful woman’s hair and lips to losing oneself in her eyes, Tanmay’s voice reveals that it is unabashedly in love. The music flourishes in parts like golden Bollywood numbers of yesteryears – the usage of strings is tasteful and the solos only heighten the aural experience. They have left no stone unturned in terms of brilliant arrangement and impeccable production.

Rating– 7/10

Etuku Toh Jani E Hridoye – Brishtilekha Nandini 

A very tender song, the vocalist approaches it like she would hold a new-born baby – holding it close to her chest and showering it with all the love she can muster. This song has strong contradictions as it talks about things not ending even after they have. So, the concepts of longing and desolation co-exist, carried by the opposing soundscapes of guitar-based rock music and Eastern classical harmonies. The overall vibe is, however, modern. The mood transitions are breath-taking and beautifully orchestrated.

Rating– 8/10

Mone Kori Assam Jabo – Tusha Hasan and Antora Mondal 

This song is in the tradition of jhumur – a folk form prevalent in the districts of Purulia and Bankura in West Bengal. The flute plays a central role in carrying the essence of the rural sound, while the dialect is typical to people of those regions. The song embodies how people were tricked into getting good work at tea plantations in Assam but were actually turned into slaves. The pathos is belied by the unsettling music and the disquieting vocals. While one will enjoy the song’s ingenious arrangement, it is bound to leave a heavy mark on the heart.

Rating– 8/10

[This review has been written by Shaswata Kundu Chaudhuri]

Prachi Agarwal

Author: Prachi Agarwal

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