The first half of December has surprises that are usually unheard. From a Bengali ghazal to a much-awaited Bengali rock song, it covers various sonic spheres, along with the usual dosage of love songs.
Kadajawle – Lakkhichhara
A long-awaited new song from one of the big daddies of Bangla rock, ‘Kadajawle’ is a promise of a new tangent of rock music that stretches the genre to its maximum limits. While using folk elements may not be new, when combined with an electric slide guitar that shoots off into ambient horizons, it really opens eyes or ears in this case. The lyrics are hopeful – they talk of emerging out of the dark and dirt -quite necessary in today’s time as the world gets restless about breaking out of the havoc wreaked by the pandemic.
Tumi Alor Kachhei Jeo – Timir Biswas
Though it sounds like a singer-songwriter effort, this song has been brought alive by two people – a guitarist and a vocalist. Timir’s husky voice trembles with emotion as he reminisces about his past love who has gone towards the light, where he doesn’t exist. He lets her go because he feels he is small when compared to her. The acoustic guitar creates a simple yet yearnful melody bed which goes hand in hand as the song tries to wash its hands-free of the past and retire with a wound that will heal in time.
Ondho Hoye Jaao – Charitraheen 3
An ominous piano chord sets the tone for this brooding number that throws existential questions about human relationships and its darker underbelly. It takes the cliché that love is blind and asks for acceptance of lovers as they are. The transition to the bridge is breath-taking as the song transitions from a dreary piano recital to an intense hard-rock number with double pedal drumming. But its total effect is bound to raise the hairs all over the listener’s body. And this is a wondrous turn of affairs for the commercial films which usually banks on formulaic love songs.
Rangabo Bole – Arkapriya Banerjee
This song hits the bull’s eye for mushy love songs. However, its treatment takes it into a league of its own. Starting with piano chords and sweet guitar notes, it segues into the melodic cacophony of folk instruments like khol, dhol, mandira while a guitar jangles in the background. A sweet acoustic solo is also not off the plate. The lyrics use picturesque metaphors to send the message that the woman has left everything else and come to her lover’s home to colour up his life.
Koto Aar Thaka Eka Eka – Piu Mukherjee
A Bengali ghazal that uses jazz arrangements as well as traditional Indian classical melodic movements, this song is a beautiful blend of diverse styles brought together by masters of the craft. While the vocalist’s skill brings out the pain of loneliness and desire for a partner, the music is the main attraction. The tabla bounces off the sarod’s sudden ramblings and tries to tame it as it goes head-on with the relentless string section adding a melancholic touch to the whole affair. The bridge is where the Western instruments take a strong stand like a periodic wave that refreshes the Indian classical shore.
**The review has been written by – Shaswata Kundu Chaudhuri**