A.R. Rahman/ You Got Me, Nexa Music
Ace composer A.R. Rahman pumps up the jam on his new English single ‘You Got Me’, featuring singers Nisa, Heat Sink, Simetri, Jonathan and Pelenuo, and written by Nirmika Singh.
Ideal for the dance floor, the number has a strong hook, Latino flavour and vibrant percussion. Uma-Gaiti’s video has a celebratory party vibe. Rahman himself begins the vocals, and the others take turns.
The good thing is that Rahman targets the younger generation rather well. After a few ups and downs in his recent career path, this comes as a foot-tapping surprise.
Rating: 8/ 10
DJ Paroma/ You’re Not Worth A Sorry, Artist Aloud
Beginning her career in an airline cabin crew, DJ Paroma got a chance to check out clubs in various cities across the world. Soon, she decided to become a full-time disc jockey.
She’s now sung on and produced ‘You’re Not Worth A Sorry’, featuring rapper Parry G. The song, which is about heartbreak and healing, has a catchy club feel and Punjabi-Hindi-English lyrics, interspersed with rap portions.
It’s a good song for the dance floor, though in terms of concept and sound, there’s nothing pathbreaking. But it’s something the jilted lot can relate and even shake a leg to.
Rating: 7/ 10
Ruby Sant feat. Uday Iyer/ Shivshakti, self-released
The term Vedic Rock has been used to describe a blend of spiritual chants with rock music. On ‘Shivshakti’, singers Ruby Sant and Uday Iyer take the concept a notch higher to produce a Vedic Metal track.
The song is high on energy and features crisp solos by lead guitarist Mradul Singhal and zitar player Siraj Khan. Sant’s singing is controlled and Iyer, who’s been with the bands Agni and Project Schwa, is great on the higher notes.
Drummer Aditya Oke and bassist Anish Poulose coordinate well, and the climax ‘Jahaan big dekho hai Shivshakti’ is explosive.
Rating: 8/ 10
Rain In Sahara/ YTOFIAJ, self-released
If you’re wondering what YTOFIAJ means, it stands for ‘You Think Our Future Is A Joke?’. On this song, Assamese band Rain In Sahara makes a fervent plea to preserve the environment and tackle global warming.
The sound seems inspired by nu metal acts like Linkin Park and Limp Bizkit, blending hard rock vocals with hip-hop stretches, played against snazzy synthesiser and guitar lines. The words “We will never be defeated, we rise, we rise” reflect the conflict.
Lain Herringman’s video goes perfectly with the song, and the whole effort has a touch of class.
Rating: 9/ 10
MassQline & Jatin/ Bharatiya Rail, Mass Appeal India
Here’s a fabulous concept in Indian hip-hop. On ‘Bharatiya Rail’, singer MassQliine and guitarist Jatin use the Indian railways as a metaphor to describe the unity and diversity of this country.
Unlike many rap songs which talk of anger, life in the slums or political activism, this one is about Indian people and their journeys, and how they are different yet similar. The lines “Rail nahin hum Hindustan hai poora” sum up the song’s statement, and the video by Crevixa goes well with the lyrics.
A catchy intro and smart riffs add to the musicality quotient. Both MassQline and Jatin combine perfectly on lyrics, composition and production, with Abhishek Gaur providing the song concept. Totally on track.
Rating: 9/ 10
Thomson Andrews/ Happy Nagar, Times Music
Singer Thomson Andrews releases a peppy and infectious tune on ‘Happy Nagar’, a song which keeps up to its title. Add to that a fairy tale-themed video, and you have a fairly entertaining package.
The highlight of the song is the use of the mandolin, played delicately by Sukanti Roy. Though there’s nothing novel in Andrews’ singing, he sticks to the track’s mood and gives it a frothy feel.
Tushar Mishra and Anushree Gupta chip in with a rap part, with Mishra writing simple lyrics. All in all, a commendable effort, boosted mainly by the video concept and the instrumentation.
Rating: 7/ 10
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