Author Archive

Screenshot 2018-12-22 at 4.20.58 PM.pngYou can find old year round ups non filmi here – 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017

  • If you don’t want to waste time reading (you know because blogging is dead), scroll down straight to the playlist.
  • The post is filled with links and you must check out few of them especially where I am talking about Namit Das.
  • The selection here is what I came across as new albums came out and/or when someone shared something with me. The flip side of being permanently absent from social media is – losing out on good music reccos. Please feel free to add your reccos because I know that there is a lot that I have missed…or not.
  • If you want to have a quick look at the list here it is:
Song Album Singers
1 Hass ho gaya Sahotas Sahotas
2 Jigar mein dard Namit das Namit das + Anurag shankar
3 Jaantha tha Sanam puri Sanam revolution
4 Bawra Sahil Samuel Naalayak band
5 Marz Yellow diary Yellow diary
6 Tum ur main he to hain Zaraasa Pavan Gaikwad
7 Gaddi Zero to infinity Raftaar
8 May or Sheeda Young desi Young desi
9 Insaan Alif Alif
10 Sapne jeete hain Harpreet unplugged Harpreet
11 Baalkada
Coke Studio 11
Nagma, Lucky and Jimmy Khan
12 rap hai sara Lyari U.G. + Young Desi
13 wah jo kalaam Asrar, Shamu bai and Vishnu
14 Ya kareem Bridge of dreams Shubha mudgal
15 The awakening Live at the Amarrass desert festival Lakha khan
16 Mess Cold/Mess Prateek kuhad
17 Marijuana Shamoon ismail Shamoon ismail

Hass ho gaya Sahotas, remember them? Band of brothers who shot to prominence in early 1990s when ATN TV channel used to play music. Though I couldn’t find their ‘original’ music video of this song, I am happy that I could find them and put them on the list. Simple, non autotuned, a bit off note here and there and insanely enjoyable.

Jigar mein dard – Anurag Shanker and Namit DasI have written about the duo earlier this year as well. You have got to hear them live to know what dimension they bring to our dying ‘non-filmi-non shouting – non bollywoodlike’ genre. Namit’s alaap refuse to leave me to this day. As far as this song goes, well, hear it and feel yourself. With people like Namit on the scene, I do feel there would be a part resurgence of Ghazal or Ghazal like joy.

Jaanta tha – Sanam Puri and the gang – I know this came in 2015 but I heard it thanks to the album that came out this year. Beautiful, 90s-sque pop album grammar of this album,  wonderful experience.

Baawra – Nalayak band – I know Sahil Samuel came out with this song in 2017 but I didn’t come across it then, largely because they released a set of songs this year as an album and that is when I got a hold of it. It turned out to be a good outing and even though I found the lyrics to be a bit of a let down, I loved the sound of the band.

Marz – Yellow diary – Thanks to someone pointing me to Sony youtube channel earlier this year, I came across this explosive song. Though the follow up of this song with the album titled izaafa, wasn’t as good as the song Marz, I would love to see what Yellow diary does next. Do see and hear the the song. You won’t regret it. Word.

Tum aur main he to hain – Pavan Gaikwad – A simple album albeit too short had this lovely little gem..Do check it out.

GaddiRaftaar and Deep Kalsi – The space is filled with below average clowns who think wearing oversized clothes and having misogynistic lyrics in a song is enough. Raftaar is miles ahead of all of them in terms of talent and thank God for it. I loved his album Zero to infinity and especially this song did me in. It has a lovely little tribute to Babu mann as well.

May or Sheeda – Young Desi – This is a Punjabi rap that I discovered through a dearest bud in Pakistan. This is rap song. This is savage funny. Young desi is so kewl! Fun fact – somewhere in the song, this appears on screen ‘1947 was more injurious thank alcohol or smoking’. *Mic drop*

Alif – The find of this year for me. Though I cannot get over Katyo Chukho, I suggest you check his channel right away and Yes, do check out the song(?) in the playlist.
Sapne Jeete hain – Harpreet – Though it was still not as beautifully sung as he is capable of, this quiet little song of Harpreet penned by Dr. Shiv Bahadur Singh Bhadauria has remained a favourite of mine since last 3 years and thankfully now I can speak about it, openly.

CokeStudio 11 – Though we shared a playlist of our picks of this season earlier this year hereBaalkada, Rap hai sara and Waah jo kalaam refuse to leave my playlist and that is why I have included these 3 lovely songs in the playlist as well. Whatever happened to CokeStudio India at MTV (Remember Imran khan was the brand ambassador for it? Hahaha!)

Ya kareem – from Bridge of dreams – is a hauntingly beautiful song and though largely Shubha mudgal and the team has been embarassing in the whole album, this beauty stands out. It is not available on Youtube and if you want to listen to a portion of it, may be try iTunes or click on this link. 

Live at Amarrass desert festival – Yet another beautiful album that I discovered thanks to Amazon music.My favorite remains the awakening with which the album opens. It is done by Lakha khan sahab and boy does it pierce your heart..!

Mess – Prateek Kuhad – Of course the visuals play a large part in yours truly loving this song, (even the taxi seat cover adds to the mood). My heart is a mess…Prateek Kuhad you beauty and a big up to everyone associated with the song, in any capacity and what a way to end the year. Fantastic time to be alive and of course to die. May be check the live version at amazon music...it doesnt have that glass crackling vibrancy to it but a good enough vibe to accompany you as you cry slowly, alone.

Marijuana – Shamoon Ismail – Explore his channel, I implore you. His work is plain brilliance and buzz has it, we will see him in the next season of a popular music movement. This song here is one for long drives and for closed rooms where you find yourself, sitting with half finished chai, a cigarette you threw too soon, a longread article you promised you will read tonight…Listen on, you crazy people and till then remember – Toon jivain marijuana, Koe davay na drama, Chaliay baar tenu mein naal le ke jawan, Toon jivain marijuana, Tethoon jalay zamana,  Jaande loki nae jeray tera fasana

A Few Quick points and useless gyaan:

  • 2018 was an excellent film year and like someone said, it took 3-4 years of hard work and writing for everyone to find better stories and excellent execution of 2018. Let us hope our music scene (film and non film) is also where film making was 3-4 years ago.
  • Yes, I love Ali Sethi and it kills me to see Bollywood lifting songs that Ali has been re-imagining and Ayushman-khurana-ising it. Guess which one has more ‘views’? One example here and for the second one, search ‘kithay naina na jodi’.
  • If you are one of those who don’t get jealous of other people,  do not devoid yourself from what Shivani and Chhaya are doing. Check out their channel here. Check from oldest to current songs, there is just so much happiness and effort here with a bit of character progression as well. I hope Bollywood doesn’t corrupt them. I cannot run in the gym without the music they handpick for their dances. You have no idea how good their videos are. Real hardcore workout, real happiness, not sitting on sorry ass and making opinions about things on social media in a bid to get a job with those you ‘hate’. Hit it! brrrruah!
  • I hope non film songs (and not those by mainstream record companies) get a suitable outlet to come out with more songs. I am sad by what has happened in this area so far.

Quick useless gyaan:

  • If you are looking at non apple, sweat proof, bluetooth earphones, do not consider BOSE soundsport – they have a huge issue of battery drain. Don’t consider the skull candy SB wireless 2, they are not sweatproof.
  • If you are looking for good headphones and can do without noise cancellation, please pick V-Moda Crossfade Bluetooth 1. Do not pick the ‘latest’ model (BT CrossFade 2), their sound is not as good as the earlier model, though BT Crossfade 2 are more portable. If you are a confirmist and don’t want to invest in ‘weird’ design of V-Moda, then please stay happy with your QC35 Bose and some such. Fun fact – it is not about ‘design’ stupid!
  • If you are looking at buying a good sound dock, consider looking at these before making a choice –  Devialet Gold Phantom and Marshall Woburn.

Here is the Non film playlist and below that, the dinchak playlist. Happy new year!

Dinchak kyunki – badhaaiyan tere ot nu tere pot nu tere baaaap bantey got nu! 

Finis~

Mukkabaaz-2018-Full-Movie-Free-Download-720p

 

In the last 5 years, 2018 was easily the best when it came to film music. It was also the year in which the drip irrigation music release technique (‘release one song when you want and let them wait for the album’) was at its peak(?). At the time this post is getting baked, albums for the music release of Simmba (to be released on 28 December) and Zero (To be released in 3 days) are yet to hit the music listeners. So Boo you makers! for being so insecure and under-confident about music. I hope some sense penetrates your nonsensical surround sound system you cover yourself with, filled with Yes-men and favour seekers (who can also make a playlist for you, I hear). I have so much to say but I guess we should just get down to the business end now.

We have picked  one song per album, a rule I wish I could go around but am thankful it exists. Do suggest your favourites which aren’t on the list for I am sure I have missed some gems. Also, there is a separate Dinchak playlist that would be tagged along with the non film music post.

If you are in no mood to read, just scroll down to play the embedded playlist.

If you just want to have a quick look at the list, here you go.

No. Song Singer Lyrics Music
1 Adhura Main Deepak Thakur Vineet Kumar Singh Vineet Kumar Singh
2 Aaj Se teri Arijit Singh Kausar Munir Amit Trivedi
3 Binte Dil Arijit Singh A M Turaz Sanjay Leela Bhansali
4 Lae Dooba Sunidhi Chauhan Manoj Muntashir Rochak Kohli
5 Lo Safar Shuru Jubin Nautiyal Sayeed Quadri Mithoon
6
Shraddha Mishra
Faiz Ahmed Faiz
Sandesh Shandilya
Papon
7 Ae Watan Arijit Singh Gulzar Shankar ehsaan loy
8 ishq di baajiyan Diljit Dosanjh Gulzar Shankar ehsaan loy
9 Saansein Prateek Kuhad Prateek Kuhad Prateek Kuhad
10 Tera fitoor Arijit Singh Kumaar Himesh Reshammiya
11
Jonita Gandhi
Irshad Kamil
Niladri Kumar
Arijit Singh
12
Ammy Virk
Shellee
Amit Trivedi
Shahid Mallaya
13 Har Har Gange Arijit Singh Siddharth-Garima Sachet-Parampara
14 Naina Banjare Arijit Singh Gulzar Vishal Bhardwaj
15 Wo Ladki Arijit Singh Jaideep Sahni Amit Trivedi
16 Mere naam tu Abhay Jodhpurkar Irshad Kamil Ajay Atul

 

Adhura main – Being a fan of Deepak’s Harmonium accompanied voice since humnee ke chhori ke, it was easy to love this earthy song with emotions spilling all over the senses. Vineet, the composer and lyricist, has summarised the entire struggle in this fabulous song. You cannot listen to this song on repeat, that is how devastating it is.

Aaj se teri – Endearing, melodious, rich, simple and filled with love.

Binte dil – Though I am madly in love with Nainowaale ne and Ghoomar, I just couldn’t get beyond this mad mad song that has everything and a little more. Of course the song is composed and written very well, but for me, the refreshing whiff is Arijit‘s effortless singing. Those who tell you they loved Ranveer Singh because of ‘khali bali’, are actually thinking of this song. Yep.

Lae dooba – A song filled with Shiv Kumar Batalvi‘s mainu tera shabaab lae baitha vibe, Lae dooba gave us Sunidhi Chauhan the way we are almost forgetting she can touch your soul.

Lo safar shuru ho gaya – When Mithoon composes happy romantic songs without the Aashiqui-sque familiarity, such pleasant songs emerge and boy what a delight they are!

Raat yun dil mein – The first duet I liked this year. I dislike romantic songs but when Faiz is done right, it feels…Jaise beemar ko…bewajah qaraar aaye..The song cures you of ailments you didn’t know you had.

Ae watan  – A song in 2018 that celebrates ‘desh prem‘ subtly, a rare event these days. Pahuchu mein jahan bhi meri buniyaad rahe tu. Though towards the end of the song, I felt like I am listening to the end notes of ‘Noor e khuda’, it only made me love the song more.

Ishq di baajiyan – Though I didn’t enjoy the backup vocalists going a bit too hard on ‘door na jaa’, S.E.L.’s masterstroke of using Shankar Mahadevan‘s voice smartly did me in. Though it is the least ‘repeated’ song this year amongst all here, how can you not fall for Diljit Dosanjh’s charming voice?

Saansein – Main apne hee mann ka hausla hu, Hai soya jahan par mein jaga hu..Main peeli seher ka nasha hu…Main madhosh tha..ab main yahan hu. Prateek Kuhad, you beauty!

Tera fitoor – There is always time for an old fashioned, non autotuned fantastically composed romantic song from Himesh Reshamaiyya isn’t it? I don’t care how the video is, I love this song a bit too much for my own good I guess. Arijit Singh, are you human?

Ahista Ahista – Laila Majnu, the album delighted me in ways that A.R. Rahman’s albums used to. There is too much to thank this album for and I choose Ahista Ahista for the playlist. Irshad Kamil has penned easily the best film song of the year here. Doori ye kam hee na ho, main neendo mein bhi chal raha. Truly a song worth dying for.

Daryaa Mannmarziyaan was no Dev D, still it came dangerously close and broke everything that came its way this year. Both versions of this song are super good, still I feel the rush much more thanks to Ammy Virk‘s version. I could write pages about the way Ammy makes me soar. Most importantly, don’t forget – Shellee.

Har har gange – The most intense yet calm song of the year. Off late, We seem to hardly get spirituality right in Hindi films, let alone music. This is a beautiful exception. Tera karm hee hai jo sang tere hee jaaye. No intellectualising, just a simple message, delivered simply. Arijit singh, I love you.

Naina Banjare – I was so tempted to put the title song here, still this mad song took the better of me. Giri re giri babua, beech bajaare. Did you notice Arijit call Naina as Nahena…?

Wo ladki – The overarching tune, magnificent composition, irresistible singing and what atmosphere! Amit Trivedi, the dominator of the year!

Mere Naam tu – The only reason I have not put any song of Dhadak is because even the title song (which wasn’t as embarrassing as other ‘dubbed’ songs) had the stamp of Ajay Atul and you could predict the pace and sound of the song. This one however, has a ‘Jaadu teri nazar’ madness and that with the confident Abhay Jodhpurkar on the microphone is just too difficult to put away. Lastly and most importantly, Irshad Kamil. Yep.

P.S. – I feel compelled to mention a few more things here.

Genres that Hindi film music touched this year which I absolutely loved:

Friendship – Tera yaar hu main from Sonu ke Titu ki Sweety – If that horrible qawwali detour wouldn’t have existed in the song, this would have made it on the list above. Still, a good addition to the genre.

Sensuous done right –  Mujhe Chaand pe le chalo – A.R. Rahman misses a lot and hits far too few off late. Nikita Gandhi and Irshad Kamil ensured this one is a hit and boy does it stay hit! (With No-hea Kakkar-isation of every song these days, it is difficult to extract real emotions from the barrage of autotune-ness these days…and this is why, Mujhe chaand pe le chalo feels even more delicious).

Inquilaab – Azaad Kar – The film had other gems as well but somehow it was reassuring to hear a wistful Swanand Kirkire pay tribute to times we are living in.

Me, as I am – Tere jaisa tu hai – I love the song but for occasional shrillness. What I absolutely love are the opening lines. Hear them again if you cannot recall them.

Kashmir – Katyo Chukho – It would have been unfair to ‘trap’ this song in the main list above. This is the best song I have heard this year and this is a song for which I would always be thankful to the makers of Laila Majnu. They gave me Alif. A song to live by and die to. It is what Channa vey wanted to and what Agar tum saath ho was.

Infinite Joy (a.k.a. Bitiya rani) – I cried all 3 times that I saw the song on screen. Yep, this one. What brilliant work by Sunny Bawra-Inder Bawra, Kumaar and of course Shubha Mudgal.

2018 – One of the most difficult years to make this playlist and am glad it was so.

 

Screenshot 2018-10-26 at 11.06.04 PM.png
I have loved Zohaib Kazi’s work for a while now and that is why I was over the moon to hear that he is going to be on the driving seat for season 11. He has anyway been associated till season 6. The buzz started with CokeStudio Explorer that featured 4 songs with varied artists and barring the last song, everything felt nice, solid and quite trippy. After explorer ended, curtain was raised on the season opener song and in came Hum Dekhenge. I loved it then and I love it now. The artist line up was just way too tempting and too good to be true. Anyway, I won’t go on and on episode-wise as you can find it here. Our picks from this season are as under:

Baalkada The way this song started made me soar like an airplane. Naghma & Lucky were fantastic! Jimmy Khan’s presence works like a balm. The gamut of genres that CokeStudio Pakistan has touched should be a case study to those who ‘do music’ in our country as well. We need to just look at the arc of emotions CokeStudio Pakistan has chosen. Arey mujhse pooch lo yaar, I will make an excel sheet for you containing those details and I will lend my time for free to you. At least touch some other genres, Dear Indian music movements!?

Rap hai sara -. The way this song has been done, it has raised the swag factor of CokeStudio in multiples. All the boys ran a riot in the studio. I last smirked at someone’s entry when Bohemia entered the studio in ‘Kandyari dhal Geet’. Young desi has bettered it. If this song was a part of a concert in a big stadium, this song would have EVERYONE take their shirts off and throw them on the stage. Lyari underground is a revealation and I loved their part as well. Confession – I prefer watching this song that hearing it and trust me, I have watched it way too much, super super stuff! (ande waala burger reference here)

Rashamama – Zarsanga makes a dashing entry to the studio and aided with Khumariyaan and a superb Babar ali khanna, she holds your attention and makes you sway with the absolute magical track. Yet another song that widens the arc of the genres which CokeStudio Pakistan explores with every passing season. Zarsanga is plain brilliance on display and her woi allah! calls are a hoot! The song then pauses and what is possibly the best moment in asserting Cokestudio Pakistan’s swag (watch how the camera pans, the music that accompanies the angle from roughly at 3:07 mins to 3:14 mins to know what I mean), Gul Panra gives her interpretation of the song. Her part is more contemporary and filled with modern arrangement which doesn’t feel bad (or wrong) either.

Nami danamChand tara orchestra, under the guidance of Omran Shafique gave us this gem. There was too much happening in terms of lighting and not in a good way. Barring that, this song soared. They should have named the song Raqs-e-bismil. I have a positive bias to Chand tara orchestra because of their name and sound. Before this season, I didn’t know about them. It is very very good to see old cokestudio musicians take the lead in inducting new artists. Like Babar has done in last few songs and my heartthrob Omran has done here…What a fantastic, liberating song! Me raqsam Me raqsam…indeed

Jind mahiya – A slow, almost reggae like pace mixed with obvious habibi influence is what catches your attention from the first second in the song. Shuja Haider’s composition is as free flowing as his singing and even though in the BTS video, he insisted it is a chichora song, the song comes across as adorable and way too catchy. This is like ‘rockstar’ without self deprecating tone and peppered with innocence. This is exactly the kind of execution that I was waiting for since the season started. The houseband played up perfectly and there was nothing over the top and surprisingly, the song sounds very well produced. Lest I forget, the dholak play from Babar added just the right amount of nasha. Easily, the first song of the season that I loved without any ‘if’ or ‘but’. Thumbs up!

Ya QurbanKhumariyaan boys made me go mad. I absolutely loved what they have done here. The song, the dance, the vibe, the happiness that dripped from their soul via their song and instruments…this is vintage CokeStudio Pakistan, this is what we wait for when CokeStudio Pakistan announces a new season. You can make half talented musicians stand and ‘fuse’ their work like there is no tomorrow, but it takes a special khaalis presentation like this to blow your mind away. How about those maddening whistles? Everything, just about everything is top notch here. Not a note wrong, excellently done boys! Fun bit – check out the Game of Thrones opening credits done by the boys here – Game of Thrones Main Theme (Cover) by Khumariyaan

Balaghal ula Be Kamalihi – When she sings, Lord hears. Simple. These are Gulzar’s words but ring in true everytime I see (holding both ears as I say her name) Her Highness Abida Parveen. There is really nothing that comes to mind when I try to analyse this song because this here is not a track, it is devotion finding its way to our souls. A magnificent presentation. Please explore it.

Wah jo kalaam – Penned by Asrar and along with him, Shamu Bai and Vishnu played a riot of colors and beauty in what is one of the best songs in all of 11 years of the studio in Pakistan. I have always had a bit of a problem with Shamu’s pitch but here, Asrar has used that to the track’s advantage. With zero accompaniment from the studio houseband, this beautiful song hits your core being like a bolt of lighting. Talking of Zero accompainment from houseband, I suspect Shamu bai was using her own Harmonium and Vishnu was using his own Dholak. The melodious strum and humming from Asrar in the beginning reminds you of all the good things that music and all of us have lost over the years. There seems to be zero innocence of ‘being’ these days in anything. For a moment, let us all just remind ourselves of this powerhouse called Asrar who has a lot that is yet to be exploited by the popular scene. Don’t you love his ‘wah wah’ in the song? A pucca performer. Do check his ‘Gaddiye’ as well, if you have time. I get a strong feeling that Vishnu will, in the years to come, make more appearances in the studio. What a brilliant command this lad has…especially the way he picked up Hyder hyder part. This is the song that, everytime when it ends, leaves me weeping. Kudos to the producers for letting this song be.

Luddi hai jamaalo – The studio always has an ace up its sleeves when it comes to re-imagining old film songs. I can’t say the same about non film songs and yes I am still sore with the wounds of Hawa Hawa. In Luddi Hai Jamalo the studio has shown how the old songs are to be touched up. The way they have added violins and the opening la la la is exactly what they should have touched up Hawa Hawa. Here, Humaira Arshad and Ali Sethi have done a decent job of sticking to the song yet adding their touch. I absolutely loved the way the sound has been managed, it sounds so fresh yet vintage. The last minute or so where the song really accelerates doesn’t feel out of sync or mood. I didn’t feel anything outstanding about Humaira’s part but I was blown away by Ali Sethi. Can this man do any wrong? I really don’t think so. If I were a ruler with a kingdom, I would have relinquished all to this man just for his ‘Howaan tathon paray Kyon mera dil daray, Chad kay duniya saari, Teray tay kyon waray’ part in the song. I am not kidding.

Aurangzeb – by Mughal-e-funk is quite an interesting track for the simple reason that it explores a genre within a genre. Presenting Aurangzeb‘s reign and conflicts via instrumental is totally a new way to present instrumental tracks. The houseband and especially Babar ali Khanna really came together to touch up Mughal-e-funk‘s exciting presentation in the studio. Excellent Sitar, Superlative Harmonium and a solid backup vocalist sound…what’s not to like? (I know, the lighting..! still…I liked this track)

Ko ko korina – I am from Lucknow and one of the reasons I love CokeStudio Pakistan is that they showcase the music from their region which I may not have come across earlier. Personally speaking, while growing up, I was more intrested in exploring Umar Sharif’s plays and swaying on Hawa Hawa than anything else. So when I saw CokeStudio reimagine what they have posted as ‘infamous’ Ko Ko Korina, I was hearing it for the first time. I know I will lose a lot of friends here but I didn’t find this song bad at all. I in fact liked how the studio, in a rare display of self control, conducted the song with the right amount of mischief and melody. No, I didn’t find Ahad Raza Mir or Momina Mustehsan out of tune. I would still say that Momina was struggling in Antras but largely lovely lovely song. I then went and checked the original song and well, I could still not get myself to dislike this re-imagination. I am just raving mad at the studio for what they did with Hawa Hawa. One might argue, that my grouse with Hawa Hawa‘s re-imagination is because unlike Ko Ko Korina, I have grown up with Hawa Hawa, so I am not as emotionally invested with Ko ko as I am with Hawa Hawa. I will disagree to that train of thought for the simple reason that Ko Ko Korina‘s re-imagination didn’t take any unneccesary turns and the pace and treatment was upbeat (what a lovely guitar – keyboard play by Rufus and Momo by the way!), Whereas the Hawa Hawa reimagination was half hearted, sounded dead on arrival and took that unnecessary tirbal turn which still haunts me at night. So there, that is my take. I liked Ko Ko Korina! Someone please join me and let us petition the studio to re-re-imagine Hawa Hawa?

In addition to the above:

  • Shikwa/Jawab e shikwa – was so good till Natasha baig’s part. To me she has been the find of the season. Still, the usually dependable Fareed Ayaz & Abu Muhammad Qawwal put me off this time and I couldn’t bring myself to repeat the song just because of them and this applies to their self absorbed ‘piya ghar aaya’ as well. Sad.
  • Runaway – would have been much better with just Krewella.
  • I absolutely loved the first 3 mins of dil hai pakistani
  • I disliked the way Main iraada came together. That was cacophony and largely due to excessive artists and over the top audio mixing
  • I liked Dastan-e-moomal rano but couldn’t sit through the whole of it on repeated listening. I like the subtle presentation of the song.
  • Illallah was so good but was let down by poor lyrics and somehow ‘aaja piya tori yaad satave’ sounded like a mifit with the mood of the song. Hear the first 2 odd mins of the song though to see what this song could have been.
  • I disliked the uncertainity about ‘will this be a 3 song or 4 song episode’. Nope don’t play with that. Please.

Some of the best music memories that I have since the last 10 odd years are attributed to CokeStudio Pakistan. Some of the most aggressive views that have popped up in my head have been a result of poor imitation of CokeStudio 11 by other movements in and outside Pakistan, CokeStudio at MTV for one. What happens when the movement you have come to love starts showing signs of becoming a bad parody of itself? That is exactly what happened with the season 11 and it pains me to write this because in my books, even when CokeStudio Pakistan is bad, it is miles ahead of garbage that is masquerading as ‘music movement’ in and around the subcontinent. Make no mistake, it is not just Season 11 that has disappointed. The downward spiral has continued since Rohail has departed and the only exception to that has been the superbly Season 8. Though I would not write off Zohaib and Ali Hamza, I would like a little bit of ‘pause’ in the execution. Everything need not be over the top, extra experimental and please slow down those maddening lights. Lastly, please don’t play around with melody and defile it like you have done with Hawa Hawa this year. Ever.

Love from India

P.S. – Bhaga ke le jaunga Ali Sethi ko main ek din, dekhta reh jayea Pakistan aur dekhta reh jayega India. Yep.

P.S.2. – Please fire whoever has been in charge of audio mixing this season.

Image and video courtesy – CokeStudio.com.pk – You can download all songs for free from here.

11d30-1g9uhmxajetryqgyeio_ccw

Sounds offensive no? But it’s a fact that you are acting like bhakts and here’s why.

Illogical
Do you know bhakts are supposed to be illogical? Shazia has rationally pointed out all the holes in your decision here so there isn’t much to say there. But your response? Well, it is stupider than Modi’s logic for climate change. (Look it up here ) We thought you wanted to open a conversation, your response shows you don’t even know where to begin. No communication, no valid reason presented to her. Why? Is it too much to ask you to think critically? If yes, then you are no better than bhakts and all the talk of independent cinema and artists voices is baloney. If no, then think.

Herd mentality
If you can think you will know you are jumping on a bandwagon without really standing up for anything. Just like bhakts keep shouting ‘hindu khatre mein hain’ at every given opportunity without knowing jackshit about what Hindu means. Or Hindustan for that matter. Just because everyone is high on moral outrage you are high on it too. Sorry, this way your voice and stand becomes more irrelevant than you think. But oh, I forgot you cannot think. For yourselves.

Righteousness
Are you a film festival or a Khap Panchayat? I smell so much self-congratulatory pride in your actions and statements. Why? Suddenly you have become all righteous and in the weird most way possible. Oxfam is Ok with you, Lars Von Trier is Ok with you but Bebaak is not. Even after all mentions of the co-producer in question have been removed. And yet, his involvement in other projects go unnoticed. Really now? Who made you the Sarpanch of the me too movement? And a patriarchal one that too.

Convenience
Bhakts have no identity of their own, they derive it from their idols. By taking a stand that is as pointless as it is stupid, you seem to be trying to latch on to the identity of the me too movement because you have none of your own (you can’t have an identity if you can’t think for yourself, btw) Your decision seems to be a strictly PR exercise to keep a good, clean, progressive image in public. A ‘show’ to display you are on the ‘right’ side. That is what patriarchy has done all along. Are you any better? Doesn’t look like to me.

Sense of ownership
Have you noticed bhakts demanding India be exactly the way they wish to be? Have you noticed that all who don’t fall in line are summarily lynched and removed from the system? Do you really think the me too movement is simply about arbitrarily disconnecting those who don’t agree with you? Not only have you denied Shazia a fair hearing, your responses show you wish to have no conversation about it because you seem to know what you are doing is right. Somehow that is enough and Shazia has no place or say in the matter. Wonderful. I thought only bhakts did that. The me too movement, is not yours alone to decide what to do with it. Just like India does not belong to the bhakts alone.

Entitlement
The me too movement is a variety of things for all of us, women and men alike, small and big alike. For some it is about speaking up, for some remaining silent, for some taking action, for some backing off. But for all of this to have happened, women and men alike, have taken individual stands. They have made difficult choices. They have lost friends, reputations and careers among other things, to ensure we finally call out hypocrisy and entitlement. Your stand reeks of both to me, hypocrisy and entitlement. Will you call yourself out? Guess, that would be bad for PR. If you won’t you don’t stand in solidarity with the movement because the one thing it has taught us all is where we all are complicit in the system. But you seem to be a system unto yourself and an ill-thought out one at that. Doesn’t it remind of you something called the bhakt behavior?

Any answers to all of the above? If not, try watching Bebaak again, you may still have a copy. May help you develop a brain. And a spine.

Btw, Bebaak means fearless.

Fatema Kagalwala
A very disappointed film fan who also happens to be a feminist.

The hype, the excitement, the wait ends today.
Sriram Raghavan’s Andhadhun releases. And everyone is eager to watch it to know the answers to the questions the trailer raised.

Meanwhile, why not give a viewing to the short that is supposed to have given Sriram Raghavan the core idea of the movie?

Here’s French short The Piano Tuner, by Olivier Treiner.


While we all wait for Rima Das’ Village Rockstars’ theatrical release, there is more good news for the film and its fans.

Village Rockstars has been selected as India’s official submission to the Best Foreign Language Film category at the Academy Awards, popularly known as the Oscars.

The 12-member selection committee of the Film Federation of India, led by Kannada producer-director Rajendra Babu, announced the decision after watching 28 entries, which included Meghna Gulzar’s Raazi, R Balki’s Padman, Shoojit Sircar’s October, Dipesh Jain’s Gali Guleiyan, Nila Madhab Panda’s Halka, Siddharth Malhotra’s Hichki, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmaavat, Tabrez Noorani’s Love Sonia, Ashwin Nag’s Savitri biopic Mahanati, Ravi Jadhav’s Nude, Chezhiyan’s To-let, Rahi Barve’s Tumbbad, Sukumar’s Rangasthalam, Rahul Bhole and Vinit Kanojia’s Reva and Deb Medhekar’s Kabuliwala adaptation Bioscopewala.

The director-cinematographer-editor-producer Rima Das says, “I have been waiting for this day and praying! Luckily, I got this news in my village at Chhayagaon, Assam (I arrived last night) I am glad that I am with my family and the cast of the film. Otherwise, a news like this, if you are alone in some far off land, could put you off the balance! Although I have been jumping around uncontrollably and creating all sorts of a nuisance. I still can’t believe that our film is India’s Oscar entry. I am pinching myself, screaming shouting with joy.”

She adds, “We are totally overwhelmed by the announcement that Village Rockstars is India’s official entry to Oscar this year. I am so grateful to the selection committee for believing in our film.”

The film which had its World Premiere at Toronto International Film Festival and India Premiere at Mumbai Film Festival 2018 has screened in more than 70 prestigious international and national film festivals and won 44 awards including 4 National Awards (Best Feature, Best Editing, Audiography and Child Artist).

It was an official selection at Film Bazaar Recommends (at NFDC Film Bazaar 2016), 2017 Marche du Film (Cannes) Work-In-Progress, San Sebastian International Film Festival 2017.

Until now only three Indian films have made it till the last round and were, as a result, nominated in the foreign language film category at the Oscars – Mehboob Khan’s Mother India (1957), Mira Nair’s Salaam Bombay! (1988), and Ashutosh Gowariker’s Lagaan (2001).

The 91st Academy Awards is scheduled to be held on February 24, 2019.

Here’s Rima Das sharing her joy on Twitter:

(click on any pic to start the slide show)

Vasan Bala’s Mard Ko Dard Nahi Hota (The Man Who Feels No Pain) became not only the first Indian film to be featured in Toronto International Film Festival’s Midnight Madness, but also the first Indian film to get the Grolsch People’s Choice Award in the same segment.

Here’s Vasan’s acceptance speech at TIFF…

 

And this is how the film was introduced by the Midnight Madness curator Peter Kuplowsky. So much fun!

Here’s all the early reviews from TIFF:

Writer-director Vasan Bala’s wild and wacky yet also warm and fuzzy fable about a resourceful young man who transcends ostensible physical limitations to become a two-fisted, swift-kicking hero likely will prove to be an irresistible crowd-pleaser on the global fest circuit, and in international release on various platforms.

Review on Variety by Joe Leydon

But those getting superhero fatigue should not worry, for along came an Indian superhero origin story inspired by every action movie on the planet that’s so funny and meta, Deadpool is crying of jealousy. This is The Man Who Feels No Pain.

Review at Bloody Disgusting by Rafael Motamayor

Through the tongue-in-cheek humor and mind-blowing action, the makers of the film manage to capture the crowd-pleasing essence of a masala film, without any of the problematic aspects of the genre. In a time where every Bollywood movie is eager to teach and preach, ‘Mard Ko Dard Nahi Hota’ takes you back to the time 7-year-old you broke your leg trying to leap into a flying kick. But instead of yelling at you for being an idiot, Vasan Bala gives you a mat to cushion your next fall and a bottle of water to keep you hydrated.

Review at BizAsia by Sahar Junejo

His film, whose title toys with Amitabh Bachchan’s 1985 Mard, summons many adorable tropes of Bollywood and superhero films — bachpan ke dost, dadaji as teacher-mentor, mother’s murder and a haunting chain, limping and one-legged martial arts masters, evil villains — but each one has its own dancing, subversive curlicue that twists and twirls the cliches, making them funny, cool, with oodles of street cred.

Review by Suparna Sharma

– Review at NowToronto by Norman Wilner