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Jukebox 2014

There were ditties that were on loop, and the ones that were just desultory. Suanshu Khurana goes through last year’s crop to choose the best and the worst of Bollywood.

Written by Suanshu Khurana |
Updated: December 29, 2014 9:52:47 am
Haider songs The music of ‘Haider’, had great moments, with melodic and lyrical depth.

There were ditties that were on loop, and the ones that were just desultory.  Suanshu Khurana goes through last year’s crop to choose the best and the worst of Bollywood.

THE GOOD

‘Haider’ (all songs): It’s hard to choose from this masterstroke of an album. Every song put out by the Vishal Bharadwaj-Gulzar-Faiz combination — be it the heaving Khul kabhi toh, a fresh take on Mehdi Hasan’s famous Gulo mein rang bhare, or the eeriness of a fantastic hook created through shovels hitting the earth in So jao na — had great moments, with melodic and lyrical depth.

London thumakda, ‘Queen’: This one raised the bar among the current breed of Punjabi Bollywood numbers. It dominated dance floors, advertisements, and even the most sombre parties. A tumbi paired with Labh Janjua’s voice and Amit Trivedi’s Midas touch was enough to turn this groovy number into a chartbuster.

Baby Doll, ‘Ragini MMS 2’: It stuck from the moment it hit us. The trademark tumbi, along with contemporary beats, remained the backdrop of the track which was layered with the fresh voice of Kanika Kapoor. The raw texture of her slightly shrill voice seemed to have been transported from the interiors of a Punjabi wedding sangeet to a contemporary studio set up. The audience bonded over this rockstar of a song on the dance floors and social networking sites with much enthusiasm.

Kanpura, ‘Katiyabaaz’: The song was far too powerful to be comfort food. Rahul Ram and Amit Kilam of Indian Ocean, along with lyricist Varun Grover, delivered an absolute cracker with Kanpura. It was mostly dominated by the robustness of Ram’s voice, and was one of the finest earthy yet contemporary numbers to hit Bollywood in 2014, and well, it came from the indie side of things.

Patakha Guddi, ‘Highway’: Nooran Sisters, with their rustic voices, hit all the right notes with this AR Rahman ditty. There was a sincere charm to this song. For us, it was also the bull’s eye of the year. It was engaging, upbeat, well-orchestrated and had even the most tiniest detail going for it.

THE BAD

Photocopy, ‘Jai Ho’: Himesh Reshamiya sang this garba track composed by Wajid. The scattered arrangement, no sense of lyrics and loud percussion, marked this dud of a song that faded from memory even before the film released.

Ummbbakumm, ‘O Teri’: Most Mika Singh songs tend to have some hook, if not lyrical sense. But when the singer decided to turn composer, he delivered Ummnnakumm. No amount of percussion and bass-heavy arrangements paired with brass sounds could salvage it.

Tanki, Youngistaan: Tanki hai hum, funky hai hum, monkey hain hum/Aadhe nahi pure paagal hain hum. That’s how this number, attempting techno-pop in terms of composition, opens. This is, by far, the only Sneha Khanwalkar song that has ever been intolerable for us, mostly because of the lyrics and partly because of its all-over-the-place arrangements.

mohabbat barsa dena tu, ‘3D CREATURE:’ The year’s worst song belongs to last year’s favourite — Arijit Singh. The composition reminds one of Nadeem-Shravan era, and was the most stale attempt of the year. Most beats seemed to have been ripped off from several
international hits.

Madmiyaan, ‘Tevar’: Another Mika Singh song, this one needed to come with a statuary warning — “Buy at your own risk”. The Sajid-Wajid composition is off-base and comes with cringe-worthy lyrics. The film will release in 2015, but for the song that was released in 2014, it’s the end of the road.

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