Small is the new big
2015 is half over. Yes, six months have gone, in a whoosh! Today’s been a day of heartbreak. From stumbling across Shahid Kapur’s wedding invite on the <g data-gr-id="76">Internet,</g> to missing out on an impromptu gig by Coldplay frontman Chris Martin at the café. I practically live at, today has been difficult, to say the least. So, a good part of the night was spent in immersing myself in music. It’s true, there isn’t another healer like music! Of course, the first 30 minutes, or so, were spent in listening to Coldplay (Strawberry Swing, Fix You, Paradise, Viva La Vida, Clocks- my favourites!), and cursing myself for deciding to stay home instead of heading to the aforementioned café for my usual glass of Pimm’s. But, the inevitability of Shahid’s wedding continued to cause me pain. And, this pain wasn’t going to be cured by <g data-gr-id="82">angrezi</g> music. Desi heart, after all, craves for desi music!
It’s nearly dawn now, and I’ve been on a Bollywood music bender. It’s been a year of underdogs, as far as cinema is concerned. Small is big, has been the unspoken mantra. From first-time filmmakers to newbie actors, from fresh composers to hitherto unheard (of) singers, 2015 has been all about young blood making it big! We’ve seen some wonderful movies – Badlapur, NH10, <g data-gr-id="78">Piku</g>, Baby, Dum Laga Ke Haisha. But, the same, unfortunately, can’t be said about the accompanying music. Good soundtracks have been few and far between. But, must admit, that these handful OSTs have managed to create a niche for themselves! Here are my top three picks of the year so far:
<g data-gr-id="65">Piku</g> (May)
Piku is a film about a father-daughter relationship set in Kolkata, and it thus came as no surprise that director Shoojit Sircar chose a Bengali composer to score the film. Anyone familiar with the Bengali-popular music scene in the last five years will be familiar with Anupam Roy’s name. Roy’s sound is characterised by his melodic depth, excellent lyrics and his rootedness in Bengali culture. And, the album reeked of this ubiquitous Bengali-ness! While his music does tend to sound repetitive, what cannot be denied is the fact that he has a deep understanding of emotions and brings them out with deft subtlety. His music is the kind that takes a while to grow on you – a lot like Leonard Cohen, come to think of it. But, there’s something about its inherent organic charm that hooks listeners. My favourite from the movie is Bezubaan, which is, quite easily, the centerpiece of the album. Rendered by Roy, the song stays with you for long after its over!
I have to admit I’m a huge fan of Meet Bros <g data-gr-id="72">Anjjan</g> and Kanika Kapoor. It’s amazing how they use the same chord pattern and vocal style to churn one hit after another! Remember Baby Doll from the Sunny Leone <g data-gr-id="73">starrer</g> Ragini MMS-2? Well, they repeated the same magic with Chittiyaan <g data-gr-id="74">Kalaiyaan</g>! And, what a hit it was! It took me about 10 seconds to get into the groove and unsuccessfully imitate Jacqueline Fernandez’s steps, such is the infectious energy of the song!
And, there was Sooraj Dooba Hai by <g data-gr-id="70">Amaal</g> Malik, veteran Anu Malik’s little nephew. It’s a straightforward EDM track on the lines of Swedish House Mafia and Avicii’s music – boisterous, loud, catchy, easy on the ears, and foot tapping. I’ve heard terrible things about the film, so I don’t intend to watch it ever. But, if music could determine a movie’s fate, then Roy would’ve been a super hit!
Dum Laga Ke Haisha (February)
Okay, first off, I’m going to show off. This little gem of a film has been directed by somebody I’ve hung out with. He, Sharat Katariya, is married to a friend of mine. I remember watching his first film (10ml Love) at a private screening and telling her that it won’t be long before Sharat takes the industry by storm. DLKH was nothing short of genius. And, the music, scored by Anu Malik, was like a trip down the memory lane for all of us who grew up on music from the previous century! From Kumar Sanu’s melodious, nasal voice to music reminiscent of the Seventies’, the DLKH OST was nostalgia at its best! My favourite, of course, was Dard <g data-gr-id="87">Karaara</g>, where Sanu teams up with Sadhana Sargam to take us back to the 90s’ (remember Malik’s Paas Wo Aane Laga Zara Zara from Main Khiladi Tu Anari?). Seasoned Malik has announced his comeback with a bang, and I couldn’t be happier.
Perhaps it’s time to turn the clock back, a little, and get some melody back into our music, our lives!
The author is a playback singer, former sports journalist & television producer, and writer of all things fun, serious, and in-between