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Singles Roundup #63: Hip-Hop, Alt Rock, Trap and more!

April was a thrilling month for music lovers as we were blessed with some mind-blowing releases. As we eagerly await the highly-anticipated TIMD Awards, indie artists across the country are leaving no stone unturned to make their mark in the industry. Brace yourself for a list of upcoming artists who are creating waves in their respective cities and setting the bar higher for the future. Without further ado, it’s time to discover the fresh and innovative sounds of these promising musicians below!

1. Matlabi- Natasha Noorani

Lahore-based musician, festival director and ethnomusicologist Natasha Noorani releases her fourth single from her upcoming debut album ‘RONAQ’. The song is a hauntingly beautiful exploration of the internal struggle faced by individuals trapped in cycles of oppression. With themes of generational trauma and the experiences of women and matriarchs, “Matlabi” is a powerful commentary on the impact of societal and cultural norms on individuals. 

2. Simpler Times- Black Letters

Black Letters’ first release in 2023, ‘Simpler Times’, takes listeners on a journey back to a time when songwriting was uncomplicated, as the title suggests. The track’s organic sound coupled with the band’s new bassist, Harikiran, results in a refreshing listening experience. ‘Simpler Times’ is the first of four singles to be released this year, and it sets a high bar for what’s to come.

3. Golden Skin- Sultan

New Delhi-based multi-talented artist Sultan Aftab Khan releases his second single ‘Golden Skin’. The track is a tantalizing exploration of love, lust, and intimacy. The song’s progression feels like a lover’s embrace, both lustful and loving. The minimalist vocal section that follows keeps you hooked, leading straight into a liberating guitar solo that is sure to give you goosebumps.  

4. Premonition- UKato and Three Oscillators 

Premonition, the latest single by UKato and Three Oscillators, is a genre-defying track that manages to blend apocalyptic and cinematic themes with raw, unapologetic, and aggressive motifs. The track starts with an eerie sense of calmness, and the trap beats sustain this feeling before a sudden explosion of glitchy soundscapes that hits the listener with full force.

5. Monsta- Candid Nib

Dehradun-based music producer and rapper Shobhit Pathak aka Candid Nib releases his latest track ‘Monsta’. The track  is a perfect showcase of his unbridled talent and undeniable determination. With his unswerving calibre, he cements his position at the pinnacle of the game, and makes it clear that he will do whatever it takes to stay there. 

6. Closurize- V I S H, The Nakama Theory

Dubai based Indian music producer and songwriter Vish releases his new single ‘Closurize’ featuring vocals by The Nakama Theory. The song blends 80s nostalgia with new wave music, and the result is a unique and immersive listening experience. The use of vocal harmonies and ad-libs by Ashwin, along with ambient vocals performed by V.I.S.H.’s daughter Keira Natania, creates a rich and layered sound. 

7. 2006- Sidharth Bendi

Hyderabad-based indie artist Sidharth Bendi releases his latest single titled ‘2006’. This alternative track, written and produced entirely by Bendi himself, is an emotional reflection on childhood memories and the struggle of growing up.The song’s composition is a unique blend of mind-bending electronic-pop sounds accompanied with Indian classical tabla beats and Sidharth’s soulful vocals. 

8. Bosundhara – Jananta Juri

Guhawati-based artist Jananta Juri has created a beautiful and unique song called “Bosundhora.” The Assamese RnB track is the first of its kind in the Assamese music industry, and it captures the deep love and appreciation that Juri has for planet earth.The music is produced by Assamese Industry’s ace music director Poran Borkakoty (Jojo), which adds a touch of class to the already impressive work.

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9. Insaniyat (Prime Time)- Many Roots Ensemble feat. MC Mawali, MC TodFod

Many Roots Ensemble are back with their latest release, ‘Insaniyat (Prime Time)’, featuring the talented MC Mawali and the late MC TodFod. This hard-hitting hip-hop anthem delivers a powerful message of revolution, encouraging listeners to stand united for one another regardless of their differences.The track features swooshing drums, funky guitar vamps, and tasteful organ fills, all held together by a firm groove.

10. Oregano- Stenfer

New-Delhi-based 22-year-old musician Stenfer releases his latest song ‘Oregano’. The song has a fresh sound and an infectious beat that creates a unique listening experience. The song is perfect for dance parties and a chill evening with friends. 

11. Segments- Jatin Talukdar Project

Mumbai-based guitarist and producer Jatin Talukdar releases his latest single ‘Segments’. Talukdar showcases his mastery of the guitar with a tender solo that perfectly contrasts the subsequent blistering guitar lines and high-energy riffs. The production is clean and the mix is well-balanced, allowing each instrument to shine through. 

12. Thehra- Lakshay

Delhi-based singer/songwriter and music producer Lakshay releases his latest debut hindi single ‘Thehra’. The song, written, produced and performed by the artist, captures the feeling of being trapped in a moment while desperately longing to move forward. Lakshay’s personal story of struggling to create music during the lockdown adds a layer of authenticity and vulnerability to the song. 

13. Girl Who Loved The Night- Diyatom Deb

Diyatom Deb’s “Girl Who Loved The Night” is a powerful and thought-provoking song that tackles the issue of sexual violence against women in India. The lyrics are raw and unapologetic, calling out the patriarchal society that perpetuates these crimes and demanding change. The haunting melody and soft vocals add to the emotional weight of the song, capturing the pain and sadness of the subject matter.

14. Pirates- Kairvina

Kairvina’s “Pirates” is a delicate and enchanting tune that explores the themes of liberation, acceptance, and self-love. The Mumbai-based singer/songwriter’s ethereal and dreamy vocals float seamlessly over a subdued and soulful soundscape, creating a beautifully pure and profoundly honest song.

15. Undertow- Jenn Steevs

Goa-based singer/songwriter Jenn Steevs releases her latest single ‘Undertow’ which is also the final track from her debut EP. The song talks about the struggle of accepting the reality of a situation and moving on. The lyrics of the song are melancholic yet alluring. The gentle guitar and piano music is accompanied by Jenn’s emotive voice that beautifully conveys the song’s message. 

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