The Firstpost Playlist: The Weeknd, AR Rahman, Nancy Sinatra, Ben Hur and more
Is it another weekend already? Time sure seems to be flying fast. We're already been in October a while, and before you know it, November and December will have gone by as well. And then — goodbye, 2016. Another year gone.
But if you're trying hard to make the final few weeks and months of 2016 count, here's a thought: listen to the Firstpost Playlist. Members of this newsdesk have been bringing you an eclectic mix of songs for a while now, and whether you love quirky melodies, classic sounds or AR Rahman, there's something for everyone. And a chance to discover a whole lot of new music.
So without much ado, let's do our weekend ritual: plug in those headphones, and click play. And as always, tune in to tune out.
'Summer Wine' by Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood
Written by Lee Hazlewood, this 1967 song brings back fond memories. It was my mother's favourite song, and she would blast this and other Sinatra songs on full volume on an old cassette player we owned. The original version of the song was sung by Suzi Jane Hokom. But it wasn’t popular till Frank Sinatra’s daughter, Nancy Sinatra, lent her voice to a cover version, which made it a viral hit. It's refreshing because the song doesn't take itself too seriously and Sinatra's voice, like her father's, is magical.
— Ankita Maneck
'Black Lights' by Novelists
Novelists is a progressive metalcore band from France and Souvenirs is their debut album. They decided to give it this name since the word 'souvenirs' has the same meaning in both French and English. It took them over two years to develop the songs and you can tell from all the tracks that along with being extremely versatile, they even just love making music and having fun during the process. This is especially clear in the guitar solo for this music video. Like their band name, with every song of Souvenirs, they're trying to weave a story and in this track you know it's a melancholic reverie right from the first note from the piano. The track is really short but very intense and the other tracks match these levels of intensity, which makes listening to the Novelists quite emotionally cathartic.
— Siddhi Desai
'Ben-Hur Overture' by Miklos Rozsa
Ben-Hur (1959), apart from being a great Hollywood movie, also has one of the best overtures, something which viewers usually don't focus on. The music in the overture is as epic and grand as the movie itself and seems to summarise the experience of the whole movie in its six-and-a-half minute track.
— Anshu Lal
'Aaromale' by Aishvarya Khumar, Matt Bacon and Sabrish Nanda
'Aaromale' was originally composed by AR Rahman and sung by Alphons Joseph for the Tamil movie Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa (VTV) in 2010. Already a huge fan of the entire album, 'Aaromale' was always the best companion on those days when you just want to take a long drive or walk to an unknown destination. It is an intense and breezy number, emoting love obviously.
So this cover version definitely interested the die-hard VTV fan in me. Aishvarya does a brilliant job in this version and manages to bring back the magic the original composition created, in her own style though. Her deep voice works beautifully for this track.
On a cloudy monsoon evening, this song is the one that I would play on repeat several times. Very few covers do justice to the original, but Aishvarya's is one such that got me humming for a long time now. Also, the guitar riff in the background throughout the song, goes really well with the singer's voice.
Not to miss out on the playlist, especially for all the AR Rahman fans!
— Mridula Ramadugu
'Starboy' by The Weeknd Ft Daft Punk
First the bad news. The thing that made The Weeknd what he is (his hair) no longer exists.
In an extremely trippy introduction to 'Starboy', you are shown a cleaned up Weeknd; short hair etc. What follows is baffling; not the crazy kind but the curious kind. Filled with Weeknd's signature confusing, symbolic visuals, we see him waltzing around with a bright red cross. He drives a car with a black dog. The entire song is more or less black. If Weeknd is trying to make a point about atheism, 'Starboy' makes one loud and clear.
The music, however, is extremely foot-tapping. Hear it once, and you will listen to it on loop, I guarantee you (if you're like me, you'll be singing along every single time too). The Daft Punk touch is definitely there. 'Starboy' is a single from his upcoming studio album, and if this is what we can expect, I can't wait to heat what's next.
— Swetha Ramakrishnan