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Great Songs/Singles 2023: Part 2

columns Dec 29, 02:58pm

List number four…

We did part 1 of our year-end list of great singles the day before yesterday, and we’re doing another today. Looking back on this year is always an interesting experience because we do forget just how much music was released; mostly because it seems like January was a whole decade ago. If you don't believe us, just search for "movies and music released in 2023" online. 

Anyway, here are 9 more singles we enjoyed, and we hope you will give them a listen too.

Trance Effect – Blue Sweatshirt

Dimapur crew Trance Effect released easily one the sunniest singles of the year with 'Blue Sweatshirt', one of the easiest pop-rock songs to listen to. It's cheerful, the band has precise performances, and it's just altogether a good time. 

 

Abhibyanjana - Breezing Through

Abhibyanjana has always been good at making soul-infused pop music, and the title track of her EP is no different. There's lots of languid acoustic guitar on this tune, and therefore quite the calming listening experience. Combine that with some classic pop-inspired dreamy lyricism and the simplest production, and you end up with an obvious winner. Good stuff, this.

 

Tejas and Brighu Sahni - If I Could Fly

This is an expectedly glittering tune from two top-shelf songwriters, so we're going to keep it simple. Their voices sound so nice together, there's a string section that sounds glorious, and the song is oozing with emotion. Get those sad memories ready, because this one's going to be the fuel that gives you the kind of poignant moment you sometimes search for on a tough day.

 

Umi - Falguni

This song is so good. 'Falguni' is an atmospheric, despondent, melancholy combination of Indian classical and electronicambient music. The textures are so detailed you can physically feel them, the changes in tone are mysterious but oh-so-cool, and there's an unsettling nature to the sounds that's truly addictive to listen to. We aren't going to rank any of the singles in this list, but if we did...

 

Yaksha - Lacuna

Here's a fantastic, improvised instrumental that features nothing but a musical interaction between an acoustic guitar and... a handpan! Do you really need to know more? If yes, it's seven minutes long and has this organic energy to it that's palpable. And if you want to know even more, go ahead and give it a listen.

 

Khus Fir - There's Something There

Bangalore musician Khus Fir takes much inspiration from songwriting of decades past on the understated but ultimately stunning 'There's Something There'. Good indie music is pretty sparse instrumentally but conveys an honesty and a directness that other genres simply don't have; this song has it in spades.

 

Akshita Mengi - Noor

Very similar instrumentally to the above tune but the polar opposite in intention, singer-songwriter Akshita Mengi turns the melodrama up to 11 on 'Noor' to a point where you cannot ignore the completely heart-on-the-sleeve brashness of this song. You don't need a second listen to unpack what she's talking about here, but you will need a few listens because... well, you'll really want to play this one again. It's pop.

 

Medha Sahi - Ordinary

One of the more confident debuts we've come across this year, 'Ordinary' is a study in the half-whispered, electric piano-backed ballad made popular across down-on-our-luck people in India (which is most of us currently) by a certain Mr. Kuhad. Good lyrics, an easygoing approach to production and a very nice chorus = win.

 

Fakeer And The Arc - Fly (feat. Sange Wangchuk)

Rap outfit Fakeer And The Arc finally released new music after what seemed like three years... never mind, it was three years. It was worth the wait, though; 'Fly' has fun grooves, really cool playing, a relaxed but head-nod-able vibe, and thoughtful lyricism. It also has no intentions of doing anything particularly 'mainstream' or 'trendy', and that makes it genuine. Put this one in your rotation if you haven't yet, would you?

 

Thanks for listening, and see you very soon.

 

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