Saturday, 30 March 2013

Swami - Back It Up Remixes

Swami have released the full seven track digital single of Back It Up. As well as the three mixes of the song that have been released, there are four additional versions of the song.

The DJ Swami remix keeps the bhangra influences of the Desi version. There are some nice dark moments during the track.The Subs Dub It Up version is much more minimalist interpretation of Back It Up. There is a nice acoustic section in the middle and it has a very different feel to the original version.

Both remixes show off a different side to the song and I'm not sure which I like the best. A vocoder mix and an instrumental version of the original song are included in the release.

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Take Five: Cover Versions

Today's Take Five is all about cover versions. It's a huge risk for an artist to remake a song that everyone loves. All too often the new version is not as good as the original. Occasionally, a talented artist will make a cover version that is even better than the original or gives it a whole new meaning. Here are five that will blow you away.

AAG - Bewafa
First produced for the Friction Lab, Aag's version of Imran Khan's Bewafa is phenomenal. The opening of the track is beautiful and the whole song is packed with emotion throughout. For me this is better than the original and has got more plays than Imran Khan's Bewafa.   

Ricky Jatt - Kangna
Dr Zeus' Kangna is a modern classic guaranteed to fill the dance floor. Ricky Jatt has reinterpreted the song and given it a melodic makeover. His vocals are brilliant and soulful. This version has a light summery feel that was never in the club version.

Monday, 25 March 2013

The People's Song - Cornershop on BBC Radio 2

The People's Song, a series on BBC Radio 2, will feature Cornershop in its next episode. Brimful of Asha is the starting point to explore the British-Asian experience in pop.

The People's Song is an aural history of the last seven decades in Britain as told through 50 songs. Previous tracks in the series have included those by The Sex Pistols, The Beatles and David Bowie. As well as exploring other tracks related to the genre, the show features interviews from people who were affected by the song.    

The show airs this Wednesday on BBC Radio 2 at 10pm. A preview clip is on the BBC website.

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Guru - Chhad Gayi

A singer songwriter called Guru has released his debut single. Chhad Gayi featured as Nihal's record of the week on Asian Network and there is a nice video to go with the song. 

The video opens with a shot of Guru playing the piano under a tree surrounded by autumn leaves. It tells the story of his relationship with a girl as he busks around London.There are some lovely sweeping arty shots and the video is well put together. Subtle messages tell the story and I had to watch it to pick them all up. I liked the red bus over Tower Bridge and symbolic closing of the piano lid as a sign that the relationship was over.

The song is as good as the video. Chhad Gayi is slow, sad and soulful. It shows off Guru's excellent vocals, which sound mature for someone so young. The song has a haunting quality which matches the scenes in the video.

Overall, this is a lovely debut from a talented singer and I hope to hear more from Guru soon.

Sunday, 17 March 2013

PHS vs Baauer - Harlem Shake It

Harlem Shake is a viral craze that refuses to die. Panjabi Hit Squad have come up with their own take on the phenomenon, but rather than make their own video they have made a mashup. 

PHS have taken Shake It (Gehra De De) from their album World Famous and mixed it with Baauer's Harlem Shake. Only Sani Surinder's vocals are taken from the track and they work well over Baauer's tune.

There have been a few bhangra style Harlem Shake videos, and I'm sure someone will use this version soon.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Jay Sean - Back To Love (Aaja Re) CandleLightMix

Jay Sean, who once said the key to breaking the mainstream was to be ethnically ambiguous, has made a Hindi version of his current single. Back To Love was a collaboration with Jersey Shore's DJ Pauly D and was released back in January.

The second verse of Back To Love (Aaja Re) is in Hindi and it seamlessly blends with the rest of the song. It's not a direct word for word translation, but enhances the sentiment of the English lyrics. The arrangement shows off Jay Sean's vocals and he sings well in another language.

The last time Jay Sean sang in Hindi was back in 2008 when a Hindi version of Ride It featured on the Indian release of My Own Way. I wish Jay Sean would sing in Hindi or even Punjabi more often as it presents another side to the singer. I do wonder if there is a particular reason why Jay Sean has decided to remake a song in Hindi now after so long. Perhaps he wants to reconnect with his Hindi speaking fans?

Monday, 11 March 2013

Naiem Reza - Dancing Petals

Naiem Reza, who also goes by the name Sleepy Z, has released a track featuring three vocalists and a pianist. Dancing Petals features Abhay Jodhpurkar, Raxstar, Shweta Subram all sing a verse each. Raashi Kulkarni finishes off the song with a piano solo. 

The concept of three vocalists on the same track is an interesting concept, especially as their vocals are so different. The idea works well and Dancing Petals has a haunting dream like quality to it. It's a nice debut single and I'd like to hear more from Naiem.

If you like Dancing Petals, it's available for free download on Naiem's SoundCloud page.

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Parichay - Kasam Se Acoustic Version

Parichay, the singer who featured alongside RDB and Nindy Kaur on the soundtrack of Chaar Din Ke Chandni, has remade one of his old songs. Kasam Se has been transformed into a live acoustic version. 

It's nice to hear an acoustic song from Parichay. The lack of accompaniment shows off his vocals and there is an orchestral feel to it. It's very different from the original version and the mood of the track has changed completely. I would like to hear more simple acoustic songs like this from Parichay.

If you like this version of Kasam Se, it's available as a free download on Parichay's SoundCloud page.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Mere Dad Ki Maruti Review

Falling in love with a hot girl during the wedding season seems like the  perfect plot line for a Bollywood movie. Lose your Dad’s car during the film and it’s Yash Chopra Films’ version of Dude, Where’s My Car.

As the wedding is set in Chandighar, Mere Dad Ki Maruti has a Punjabi influenced soundtrack. There are some famous names in bhangra providing the vocals including Panjabi MC, Manak E, Yo Yo Honey Singh and Diljit Dosanj. 

Haay is PMC’s big Bollywood debut. Sadly he fails to make much of an impact and I find his vocals stilted and intrusive alongside Manak E’s. The women’s verse halfway through seems out of place and doesn‘t suit the song. Naturally as it’s PMC, there is a tumbi involved which sounds familiar!