The new year sees a mixture of film and independent music. As usual, folk and Rabindrasangeet sees new renditions, while film music embraces minimalist electronica. The surprising song on this list is Euphoria’s first Bengali song.
Nao Chariya De – Koushik And Friends
Koushik Chakraborty’s upcoming folk fusion album ‘Dikshunnopur’ is a gem which is bringing different forms of folk music spread across Bengal, both in India and Bangladesh. In this rendition of a fisherman’s song, which falls under the traditional form of Shaari gaan, the folk finds its heart inside the rock structure. Starting off as a slow burner, the song has different sections which make it an entertaining listen. A montaar (cross between mandolin and guitar) heads the riffs while a synthesizer lays down ambient soundscapes as Koushik sings about the joys of fishing. An interesting interlude where all instruments bleed into each other changes the entire vibe of the song, giving it an experimental edge.
Akashbhora – Euphoria
India’s legendary folk rock band Euphoria have released their first Bengali song ‘Akashbhora’, a recreation of Rabindranath Tagore’s composition. The soundscape is a lilting wave of warmth and comfort with a tabla, flute and ektara giving it an authentic Bengali edge. Even the Western instruments move around in this melodic space, accentuating Palash Sen’s rich voice as he sings about a world filled with wonders and how his song spreads all across the sky. While the folk fusion is certainly a wonder, it follows traditional Rabindrasangeet music. There is a hint of an accent in Sen’s voice which is a downer.
Ami Tomar E Oshukh Chena – Charitraheen 3
A beautiful song which courts the unsung aspects of love and care, it is built on an acoustic guitar and mellow background sounds. Unassuming and subtle, the song imparts a sense of calm in the listener. The male vocals is brimming with emotion as it brings out understanding things left unsaid and the pain that accompanies an illness that might separate the lovers. The guitar moves around the entire song, decorating it in its simple grace. It follows neither a Western nor an Eastern mood, but simply embraces what the composition requires. The only nagging issue is the heavy superimposition of the vocals as it sounds much louder compared to the music.
Tomake Jotobari – Madhurima
The song starts on an exotic note that feels like one is being transported to a temple on a mountain top. It has that smoky, tantric vibe. Riding on short flourishes on a sombre flute, it takes a deep dive into the bittersweet agony of being unable to express one’s love. The words choke while the tune remains forgotten. The singer’s voice has the essence of lovelornness, while the music bears the scars of unrequited love. Beautifully written lyrics paint pictures of dreams breaking into pieces of glass as the object of desire remains hidden in obscurity.
Tui Aamar Hoye Jaa – Thai Curry
A typical commercial film song about love and longing, ‘Tui Aamar Hoye Jaa’ has an upbeat vibe which is bound to leave the listener with a warm feelings. Buoyed by minimal electronic beats, the music is colourful and serves the purpose of pushing the duet vocals into the limelight as the chorus calls for the lovers to unite. The interlude sounds like something that has been influenced by ‘Khwabon Ke Parindey’ from Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. Though perhaps it won’t be a hit song nor something which will be remembered, it is surely a pleasant listen.
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