August 2019, especially the 2nd fortnight saw a spate of releases across languages and offer a fascinating concoction of genres. There was positive news about the release of Gautham Menon’s much-awaited ‘Enai Nokki Paayum Thotta’, that resulted in the last 2 tracks of the album getting to see the light of day.
Karadu Moradu Poove – Bakrid – D.Imman – Star Music
This is Imman’s worthy follow up to the hugely popular Kannaana Kanne (Viswasam). Riding over Manonmani’s delightful Sarangi, this song outlines the relationship the protagonist shares with a camel (the Bakrid connection!). The lyrics by Gnanakaravel describe the ungulate as a ‘rough & tough flower’. It is good to see the growth of Narayanan Ravishankar from being one of the better contestants in Airtel Super Singer to making his mark here, as a lead singer for a top composer. He stamps his authority with his diction and pitch-perfect singing and I sincerely hope this will catapult him to the big league. The ‘Thararaaram’ hook is addictive.
Rating – 8/10
The ‘Sober version’ sung by Punya Selva is a lovely listen as well, despite the slightly off diction. The humming haunts beautifully here and Punya is superb. Imman apparently spotted Punya in a talent hunt held in France. An Eelam Tamil based in London, she is a Doctor by qualification.
Aalanguruvigalaa – Bakrid – D.Imman – Star Music
This seems to be the season of eco-friendly songs. We had ‘Manidha Malaigalai Aalvom’ (Siragu) earlier in the month. This one penned by Mani Amuthavan takes an inclusive approach (Etthana peru vandhaalum, vaazhndhukkalaam vaanga, edam irukku – ‘No matter how many descend, we have space for everyone!’). The lyrics are poignant and poetic at once. Sid Sriram is in familiar territory and strides through in his inimitable style. The woodwinds (Nathan) and strings (the bumblebee-ish prelude!) are superb.
Rating – 9/10
Kaatre Silamurai – Mei – Prithvi Kumar – Divo
Debutante composer-singer Prithvi Kumar channels his inner Bryan Adams for this one and the result is instantly likeable. Lyricist Christopher Pradeep, on the other hand, takes inspiration from the ‘Bard of Avon’ for his opening lines (All the world’s a stage – As you like it) and puts together some lovely lines brimming with optimism. The flute (uncredited) goes for a lovely jig in the first interlude and lifts the mood to a new high that eventually culminates in the peppy second half of the song. A perfect song to go with your morning cuppa!
Rating – 8/10
Prithvi Kumar is a founder member of the Chennai based fusion band ‘Oxygen’. He currently lives in New York and pursues music part-time.
Edharkadi – Adithya Varma – Radhan – Aditya Music
The 1st single from the official Tamil remake of Arjun Reddy that will mark the debut of star kid Dhruv Vikram is here and it is sung by Dhruv himself. He is also credited with the rap lyrics. Dhruv seems at ease behind the mic and displays good control in delivering a song that touches the higher octaves frequently. This is the Telisennae/Bekhayali equivalent if you have seen Arjun Reddy/Kabir Singh respectively. Radhan builds a pulsating rock sound and the rap portions fit well in the overall scheme of things. The music video featuring Dhruv lacks the intensity of the composition and could have been done better.
Rating – 8/10
This is the 2nd time a single has been released from the official Tamil remake of Arjun Reddy. But between the 2 singles the entire film has been re-shot in entirety, with a different cast and crew (except Radhan & Dhruv). Vikram’s mentor and National award winner Bala, directed the earlier version titled ‘Varmaa’, before his much publicized ouster. The single that released earlier, ‘Vaanodum Mannodum’ (sung by Vignesh G), is a good listen and I hope Radhan retains it.
Takkaru – Ayngaran – G.V. Prakash Kumar – Divo
If you thought this was sung by Shankar Mahadevan, you are not far off with the guess. Siddharth Mahadevan, his older son is the singer and sounds so much like his dad here. GVP spruces the song up with a catchy Nadhaswaram & Thavil (Thirumoorthy & Sundar respectively) in the middle and joins with his voice for a couple of lines in between. Shiva Shankar’s fun lyrics are adequate. A catchy song that rides on Siddharth’s effortless singing.
Rating – 7/10
The song is available only as part of a jukebox.
‘Thithippa’ (sung by GVP) & ‘Tan Addi’ (sung by Anthony Daasan & Rajaganapathy) from the same album are engaging as well. While the former has an interesting sufi flourish in the Charanam* it deserved a better singer in my opinion whereas, the latter with its brassy sound seems heavily inspired by Harris Jeyaraj’s ‘Danga Maari’ from Anegan. Including the racy ‘Uyirinum Uyarndha’ (sung by Hariharan), ‘Ayngaran’ is an album that has good variety in the 4 tracks on offer.
*Charanam in carnatic music parlance, refers to the stanza’s in a composition, that have the same tune (in most cases). There can be more than one Charanam and generally loops back to the beginning of the song (Pallavi).
Pogadhae – Independent Release – Gunasekaran Balasubramanian – Trend Music
Composed and Performed by Gunasekaran Balasubramanian, this piano led melody talks about love and breakup (lyrics by Vivek Ravichandran).The composition brings out the melancholy well and
is the composer’s 2nd independent single. A good listen this!
Rating – 7/10
Kannane – Kanni Raasi – Vishal Chandrasekhar – Star Music India
Right in time for Janmashtami, comes this pleasant track that woos Krishna (‘Kannan’ as referred to in Tamil). K.S.Chitra brings all her experience to play and delivers this with aplomb. Look for her modulations to suit the lyrics. One hardly gets to hear such nuanced articulation these days. Vishal’s arrangements are apt and effective in keeping with the mood of the song.
Rating – 8/10
The song is available only as part of the complete jukebox.
Pattaampoochi Kannalae – Sixer – Ghibran – Muzik 247
This is the 3rd single from the film. The first 2 were honestly quite.. meh, considering what we have come to expect of Ghibran. The composer’s earnest singing and the catchy title hook work well in this short track. Sowmiya Mahadevan is the female singer. Anu’s lyrics try too hard to sound trendy and end up being uninspiring and eventually pulling the song down.
Rating – 6/10
Adadaa Naana – Enai Nokki Paayum Thotta – Darbuka Siva – Divo
It has been about 20 months since, ‘Maruvaarthai’, the 1st single from this film released. The song worked wonders for the singer, Sid Sriram. But the same cannot be said of the composer. The song became a rage even as the makers chose to mask the identity of the composer (Mr.X) as a surprise. This film was expected to be his big break but the delay in release, despite the top names involved, meant he has had to wait for his time in the sunshine.
Of the 2 songs that have released now, Adada Naana, sung by Nakul Abhyankar, is a breezy number, led by Keba Jeremiah’s guitars. The jazzy Sax portions by Maarten Visser enliven the mood.
Lyrics are by Thamizhanangu
Rating – 7/10
100% Kaadhal (music by G.V. Prakash Kumar), the remake of the 2011 Telugu hit 100 % love, has 10 tracks, but they pale in comparison to Devi Sri Prasad’s popular compositions from the original. Barring Thiru Thiru Gananatha and Nenjellam Nindraaye that are mildly interesting, none of the other tracks make an impression. The makers could have just used the songs from the Telugu version and achieved a lot more mileage, instead of reinventing the wheel.
2 tracks from Vetrimaaran’s ‘Asuran’, composed by G.V.Prakash Kumar, released (Gaana Exclusives) right at the end. But neither have anything new to offer, in terms of sound or verse.