It’s been more than a year in India that the music industry had to put an indefinite halt on all live shows. These live shows were a massive source of income for most musicians but instead of being frazzled, they came up with various alternatives in the past one and a half years. While some really started digging and being accepting of these online shows, some buried themselves deep into their work and releasing original music. While we did get a glimpse of what could be the new normal in the music industry for a couple of months, we are back to square one now.
The only consistent thing in the industry has been the constant new releases by established as well as new musicians. We, at The Indian Music Diaries, recognise this talent by creating our bi-monthly compilation of the latest releases in the music scene.
1. They Can Never See by The Earflower Experiment ft. Bruce Lee Mani
Multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer Astaaq Ahmed who goes by the moniker The Earflower Experiment released his latest single after more than a year called, They Can Never See, in collaboration with legendary guitarist Bruce Lee Mani. The song tries to capture a rather intimate moment between a dictator and his wife. Despite the song being set in a fictitious reality, it is supposed to be relatable in regards to the socio-political climate today. The song’s catchy and gripping with not only an interesting story but also is thought-provoking.
2. Falling by Kiara Chettri
17-year-old singer-songwriter Kiara Chettri released her latest single Falling. Unlike most love songs, this one’s about falling out of love. This song is harsh and real with its poignant lyrics. This blues-y upbeat track with Chettri’s powerful mature vocals is just another example of the young musician’s prowess as one of the finest upcoming musicians.
3. Whisper by Shrey Jadav
Mumbai-based singer-songwriter Shrey Jadav released his latest single Whisper. He’s known for classical soul, Rock, RnB and Pop music. The song is about the uncertainty of modern love and the ‘swiping’ culture where physical intimacy is easy to find but we’re so afraid of taking the plunge into something serious because we’re all afraid of getting hurt. It is a first-person song about telling your lover to open up to you and say what they’re really going through at that moment. Jadhav’s heartful songwriting and soothing vocals make this song indeed very emotive.
4. Be OK by Sosin Naomi
Nagaland-based singer-songwriter Sosin Naomi released her debut single Be OK. The song is about holding on to yourself and also embracing severe times with the manifestation of our hopes. It speaks of an aspect of self-care and moving forward, making it extremely relevant and relatable in the post-pandemic era. Naomi’s songwriting along with mature yet soothing vocals and her catchy style of music makes her one to watch out for as an upcoming musician.
5. Hair Tie by Dev Makes Music
Mumbai-based Dev Modi who goes by the alias Dev Makes Music released his sophomore single Hair Tie. This upbeat punk, rock song is pop enough to classify as a party song with fast-paced drums and catchy guitar riffs. The song is about being in love with someone and admiring the little things about them.
6. Despite by Static River
Delhi/Toronto-based singer-songwriter and electronic music producer Tanya Sharma who goes by the moniker Static River released her debut single Despite. This song is a spiritual awakening – realising that the human spirit marches forward ‘despite’ everything in the way. The music video supporting this electronic pop-rock song was shot in Canada and Delhi where the cold winter scenes were are from Canada and the warmer scenes from Delhi. Sharma’s haunting vocals and post-rock sound makes this song alluring and introspective.
7. Safar by Mayank Arya
Mumbai-based multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter Mayank Arya released his debut single Safar. This indie-pop song with an acoustic vibe aims to spread hope and love all around with its happy vibes. The song is an attempt at encouraging people to look at the glass half-full and to believe in themselves. Arya seamlessly transitions from English to Hindi throughout this catchy, feel-good song.
8. Savera by Sankskar Vaidya
Raipur/Mumbai-based singer-songwriter Sanskar Vaidya released his sophomore single Savera. It is about Vaidya’s battle with anxiety during the lockdown and how every new morning can lead to things getting better and he hopes that it resonates with anyone listening to it. With a simple composition that later reaches its crescendo, Vaidya’s poignant lyrics and his soothing vocals – together make this an emotive song for the listener.
9. Wrong Time by Manan Mehta
Jaipur-based pianist and singer-songwriter Manan Mehta released his sophomore single Wrong Time which was recorded as Compass Box Studio’s signature one-take live recording. This song stems from an innocent love for a girl in high school where Mehta hesitated to put it forth as normal sentences, so he found a way to bring it into consciousness with this song. This song, unlike his debut single which was more inclined towards shoegaze, melancholic tone has a different sound. Mehta’s style has seamlessly interwoven with Compass Box as together, they make this song lean towards a groovy jazz vibe with a saxophone composition and Mehta’s soothing vocals.
10. Seaman by Father, Son & Alcohol ft Melroy Fernandes
Bangalore-based music producer and teacher at The Music School Bangalore Rahul Desai who goes by the alias Father, Son & Alcohol released his latest single Seaman in collaboration with Melroy Fernandes. Experimental is the way to describe this four-minute track. It spans across genres besides electronic such as glitch, IDM and also has hints of a jazz piano tune as well.
11. Walking Piece of Art by Vandita Narayan (Prod. by BA55ICK)
Bangalore-based singer Vandita Narayan released her latest single Walking Piece of Art which is produced by BA55ICK. The core concept of the track revolves around Narayan painting an array of her emotions ranging from intimacy as well as vulnerability which come to life through the aesthetic music video. Narayan’s mature vocals with electro-pop beats and melodies indeed make this track a ‘walking piece of art.’
12. My Mind by Perp, NSHKO
Mumbai-based singer-songwriter Urmila Sivadas who goes by the moniker Perp collaborated with France-based singer-songwriter and producer NSHKO for her latest single My Mind. This song is based on the immense and sudden sting of loneliness brought about by the lockdown which is felt by an entire generation of young adults. With laid back, groovy beats and melodies and Sivadas’ calming vocals give this song a rather chill vibe.
13. When Nature Calls by Shanka Tribe
Kerala-based live trance music band Shanka Tribe released their latest single When Nature Calls. The band likes to categorise their unique style of music as nature trance. They incorporate various chants, mantras and expressions to convey deep emotions through their music. They include a number of tribal instruments in their music such as didgeridoo, darbunga, conga, handpan, oud, African flute, djembe, bongo, darbuka and a lot more.
14. iljhaam by NICK
Bhilwara, Rajasthan-based rapper and songwriter Nitesh Singh who goes by the moniker NICK released his latest single iljhaam. This track was born after a lot of experimenting in trap and hip-hop music. This hardcore rap track over a drill beat is the artist’s attempt to stand out in this field and bring new elements and thought behind it through experimenting.
15. COLDER! by Ksar, Blxck Riot (Prod. By Speaking Beats)
Kshitij Dhogra who goes by the moniker Ksar collaborated with international artist Blxck Riot for his latest single COLDER! which is produced by Delhi-based multi-genre producer Mayank Panigrahi who goes by the moniker Speaking Beats. The drill beat with raw vocals gives an unfiltered energy to the listener. The artists aim to inflict a distinctive listening experience on the audience.
With the future of live music still bleak, musicians can definitely use all your support. Stream their music, encourage them, give feedback, support them in any way possible. After all, music is what has helped in getting us through this year full of uncertainties.