The Telugu music in the last fortnight of the decade that went by had quite a few prominent releases with Mahesh Babu’s ‘Sarileru Neekevvaru’ and the Allu Arjun starrer ‘Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo’ getting a complete soundtrack release after teasing the fans eternally. Both films had their 1st set of music releases almost 6 months back.
Singles Anthem – Bheeshma – Mahati Swara Sagar – Aditya Music
Anurag Kulkarni also credited with the vocal arrangements & whistling, is in fine form and breezes through this groovy track in style. The unique sitar strum (Phani) that features through out and the jaunty rhythm work well.
Mahati Swara Sagar is the son of popular composer Mani Sharma and debuted in 2015 with ‘Jadoogadu’.
Sarileru Neekevvaru Anthem – Sarileru Neekevvaru – Devi Sri Prasad – T-Series Telugu
Devi Sri Prasad (DSP) is also credited with the lyrics of this song, which is an ode to the army in general and the soldiers in specific. Not much can go wrong when you have Shankar Mahadevan behind the mic and the veteran shoulders the rendition like he always does. The title hook is infectious. DSP goes for a sprawling orchestration featuring the Macedonian Symphonic Orchestra and it adds good value for the anthemic aspirations of the composition. This is a good listen
Dang Dang – Sarileru Neekevvaru – Devi Sri Prasad – T-Series Telugu
The ‘Dang Dang’ hook, the ‘Lets Party’ reprise and the energy Nakash Aziz and Lavita Lobo exude make for a lively song that will be sought after in the dance floors. Babu’s Trumpets and Trombone stand out.
Title Track – Mathu Vadalara – Kala Bhairava – Sony Music South
It is all in the family here! Veteran composer M.M.Keeravani pens the lyrics for a track composed and sung by his older son Kaala Bhairava, for the film that marks the acting debut of his younger son Sri Simha. The song starts with the prelude to the ‘Mathu Vadalara’ song, in the golden voice of Ghantasala, from the 1966 NTR starrer ‘Sri Krishna Pandaveeyam’ and sets the tone beautifully. The song itself is heady, thanks to the electric guitars, the infectious rhythm and the dopey rendition by the composer.
Samajavaragamana (Female Cover) – Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo – Thaman.S – Aditya Music
This is coincidentally the 2nd track this fortnight to feature the Macedonian Symphonic Orchestra and it is fair to say that the usage is better here. Sung by Shreya Ghoshal and arranged by the super talented composer Ramesh Vinayakam (Nala Damayanthi, Azhagiya Theeye, Ramanujan). Shreya’s honey-soaked vocals and skillful rendition combined with the sedate orchestration make for a great listen and personally sounded better than the more popular male version that has been hogging the charts.
Butta Bomma – Ala Vaikunthapurramuloo – Thaman.S – Aditya Music
Thaman gets Armaan Malik to sing this one and he is excellent. It is hard not to notice how well his voice suits that of Allu Arjun. Thamania’s lively percussions and the whistle add pep to what is one of the most expected music videos. The teaser featuring Allu Arjun doing his trademark glides and moves is already a rage. The tune per se gets slightly monotonous after a few listens.
The title track featuring Carnatic singer, Haripriya & Shanmugapriya (Priya Sisters) along with Sri Krishna is a good listen and packs a punch with its arrangements and the lovely vocal harmony.
That rounds up a rather memorable year for the Telugu music industry that had a lot going for it in terms of variety and more importantly hits. ‘Dear Comrade’ (Justin Prabhakaran) made a mark across all languages it released in for its music. Thaman & DSP were the most sought after composers, especially when it came to the big star vehicles. Anirudh Ravichander tested waters successfully with Jersey & Gang Leader. Chaitan Bharadwaj (Manmadhudu 2, Guna 369), Suresh Bobbili (Thippara Meesam, Tholu Bommalata, George Reddy), Mickey J Meyer (Valmiki/Gaddalakonda Ganesh), Gopi Sundar (Majili, Choosi Choodangane) & Ron Yohann Ethan (Madhanam) were other composers who made a mark with their music in 2019. Bollywood star composer Amit Trivedi set foot with the ambitious Chiranjeevi starrer ‘Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy’ but found limited success. ‘Saaho’ the other big release experimented with the multi-composer trend but ended up with a lukewarm response.
We hope the coming year and decade will be even more memorable and eventful!