Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Top 30 Hindi Film Songs of 2015!

So I quickly (and finally) managed to submit my nominations for this year's RMIM Puraksar (You should too, last day is 31st December, 2015, don't thank me for reminding you this early!). Process is simple, fill up your top 30 favorite Hindi film songs of the year (in any order). And after putting a little more thought, I tried to rank my top favorite songs up, and the result is this year-ender blog-post (Yay!). Here you go:

1. Agar Tum Saath Ho (
Do I need a reason to tell you why it is the best song of the year? You must have looped this over a thousand times already and are probably still playing it.

2. O Saathi Mere (Tanu Weds Manu Returns)
Uff, "aag aur paani se phir likh de woh waade saare; saath hi mein roye hasein, sang dhoop chhaon re". This intricate composition has been written with the same "aag-pani", transitions between the same "dhoop-chhaon".

3. Moh Moh Ke Dhaage - Female version (Dum Laga Ke Haisha)
The beauty of simplicity. No heavy orchestrations, no over-the-top arrangements by Any Malik, simple heart-touching lines (by Varun Grover) rendered beautifully by Monali Thakur.

4. Wat Wat Wat (Tamasha)
Fun and heartbreak blended so well with two equally good vocals. I still smile every time Arijit goes "tiiiip taaap ke". :)

5. Aam Hindustani (Bombay Velvet)
What a piece! An elaborated 3 minute prelude to a 9 minute grand composition. This track opened the film as well as the soundtrack, and very richly so!

6. Mohabbat Buri Bimari- Version 2 (Bombay Velvet)
All that jazz aside, this is inherently very Hindi film composition. And Neeti Mohan takes it to another level.

7. Byomkesh In Love (Detective Byomkesh Bakshy!)
Blek took their old club bumber (Fog+Strobe) and got it married with... Shobha Gurtu's thumri, and how! Beautifully used in the film too with the slo-mo sequence.

8. Bach Ke Bakshy (Detective Byomkesh Bakshy!)
This is Sneha Khanwalkar doing her job! Too many rappers yet doesn't feel like a spoiled brought. 

9. Shaam Ke Saaye (Talvar)
Gulzar and Vishal doing a kind of composition that Gulzar and Pancham did in Ijazat. Only grouse: Why didn't Vishal sing this one himself?

10. Tu Kisi Rail Si (Masaan)
There is something ethereal about this one. There is something broken in it. There is something that would speak to everyone, everyone could relate and feel. Varun Grover's lyrics and Indian Ocean's music touches that raw nerve quite beautifully.

11. Matargashti (Tamasha)
Absurd fun. It took me several repeated listenings to get the head and tail of this song's structure that ends transcending Whatsapp-Twitter generations with heartwarming Dev Anand tribute. 

12. Dil-E-Nadaan (Hawaizaada)
Ghalib's heavy-worded Dil-E-Nadaan done like a breeze. 

13. Aayat (Bajirao Mastani)
Arijit's soul and SLB's grandness. This one captivated me, got me intoxicated, despite some of its flaws.

14. Ab Tohe Jaane Na Doongi (Bajirao Mastani)
Ustad Bade Ghulam Ali's thumri redone like a modern romantic composition, and done so well at all levels-- from arrangements to vocals. Payal Dev was a discovery for me.

15. Dhadam Dhadam (Bombay Velvet)
Give Neeti Mohan all the Best Singer awards this year for this one.

16. Naak Pe Gussa (Bombay Velvet)
Amidst all the grandness of jazz in this album, comes this intimate one. Mohan's voice kisses your ears.

17. Le Chal Mujhe- Female version (NH10)
Composer Bann Chakraborty made 5 tracks out of this one tune for the album, but this one by Shilpa Rao is an ace (Arijit's come close too). Must hear! 

18. Sooraj Dooba Hai Yaaro (Roy)
New Year's Eve is tomorrow, right? This shall be played, twice at least!

19. Teri Dua (Hawaizaada)
I don't really like this one in its entirety but the music is arresting, and Wadali Brothers' entry in this one is just divine!

20. Kinna Sona (Bhaag Johnny)
Almost every year, there's one song by Mithoon in a multi-composer soundtrack that nobody listens to. This one is that. 

21. Gulabbo (Shandaar)
Trivedi pulling off Rahmanesque bits in a fun track!

22. Chittiyan Kaliyaan (Roy)
Because, why not? 

23. Lip To Lip (Katti Batti)
So mushy yet so lovely. 

24. Chori Chori (Hunterrr)
Soft composition that touches soft corners. The word 'earworm' is made for this.

25. Sooiyan (Guddu Rangeela)
Nothing exceptional from Trivedi, yet so lovable.

26. Judaai (Badlapur)
This one burns like a flame. Rekhaji bowls you over in her lowest notes, and there's terrific Arjit too. 

27. Jee Karda (Badlapur)
Grungy rock with shennai in it. Whoa!

28. Banno (Tanu Weds Manu Returns)
So good to see a really good number busting all the charts and not some daru-shaaru party song.

29. Mai Tujhse Pyaar Nahi Karti (Baby)
Poetic compositions aren't dead. Just that no one listens to them when it is not marketed in your face.

30. Foreign Balamwa (Margarita With A Straw)
Mickey McCleary, when not over-ambitious, gives most enjoyable tracks. Also, Sonu Kakkar is so good here.
I've tried to cover as many film albums as I could here, favoring some underrated ones (like those from Baby, NH10, Bhaag Johnny and Margarita with A Straw). Hopefully, in this list, you end up discovering some songs that you might have missed. In that case, my job as a music reviewer would be done. In case I have missed some good ones that you feel should be up in any top lists on the earth, please add in comments!

Additionally, summarizing the above list brings me to:

Top 5 Hindi Film Albums of 2015:
  1. Bombay Velvet (Amit Trivedi)
  2. Tamasha (A R Rahman)
  3. Detective Byomkesh Bakshy! (Madboy/Mink, Blek, Sneha Khanwalkar, Peter CatRecording Co., Mode.AKA, Joint Family, IJA)
  4. Hawaizaada (Rochak Kohli/ Mangesh Dhakde/ Ayushmann Khurrana/Vishal Bhardwaj) 
  5. Bajirao Mastani (Sanjay Leela Bhansali)

That's all folks!

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