When freedom of speech and expression has been curtailed with reasonable restrictions, the common man finds refuge under the wings of art. Such is the story of six artists and collectives who took up music, in order to question the ruling government that is all set to lock horns in the upcoming Lok Sabha Elections 2019.
The beauty of these soundtracks lies within the lyrical notes that questions several issues such as lynching, propaganda, fake news and scams. Here’s a quick rundown on legitimately produced music that you ought to listen before you get inked.
- Aisi Taisi Democracy
This one’s a political satire collective that has been touring in the country with ‘The Azadi Tour 2019’. The artists include Indian Ocean’s Rahul Ram, and Varun Grover to name a few. The list of compositions that are available online include Chunaav Ka Mahina, Bharat Desh Mera, Modi Ji Modi Ji – An ode to demonetisation, Anshan Tension Song, and The Rafale Song that touch upon several burning and controversial issues ahead of the elections.
- One Sided Stories
Mumbai’s Indie side was a boost for Raghav Meattle, a young Indian singer-songwriter who let it all out in his track ‘One Sided Stories’- a part of his crowdfund his album, Songs From A Matchbox. This song in particular delves into the spread of fake news and emergence of government propaganda. Be it WhatsApp forwards that add fuel to the growing intolerance in the country or one sided information which is falsified; this bold song takes a dig in a melodious form.
- Achhe Din Blues
With a video over six minutes, this blue is a gem of an art by Aamir Aziz. The soothing vocals with guitar playing provides a fresh narrative on incidents that have occurred in the ruling government’s tenure. The 29-year-old is featured in this reel has a recurring mention of a ‘pagal awara kutta’ (mad dog on the loose), which has a different interpretation altogether. According to the artist, ‘pagal kutta’ is the common man who’s not ready to accept the lies of the empire, as quoted by Homegrown.
- Saffron Ablaze
With the Ranveer Singh starrer Gully Boy giving rap culture a major acceleration to rap culture on the Indian front, political parties couldn’t resist from engaging with the millennial trend. With Congress and BJP having their own rap battle on social media, two artists – Armaan Yadav and Shaayak from Ashoka University released their own rap song titled ‘Saffron Ablaze’. From topics like lynching, beef ban to Kathua rape case, this hard-core rap will leave you out of words.
- The Modi Song
YouTube’s popular comedy network, East India Comedy has spoken of spoken out on major trivial issues with their satirical videos and rants. One such topic includes PM Modi’s governance in their ‘Modi Song’. This catchy track describes the PM’s unending international trips, demonetisation and the summary of what the BJP-government has done since 2014. The song is a spoof of Alisha Chinai’s popular Indi pop song ‘Made In India’.
- The Ska Vengers
One of the pioneers of ‘Ska’ as a genre in India have been the Ska Vengers. This 8-piece collective has done several socially relevant songs including one titled ‘Badda’. It laments the censorship of our media that is so frequent in today’s times including the manipulation of the Indian news media that is agenda driven at times. Another one – in a cover of The Specials’ 60’s tune ‘A Message to you, Rudy’ revamped as ‘A message to you, Modi’ slams Modi and BJP as a whole.