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10 Best Indian Videos of 2016

Parekh & Singh get vibrant; Monica Dogra’s art deco project; Vernon Noronha’s moving tribute


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Parekh & Singh.

1. Dualist Inquiry: ‘Violet’

Turns out dreams make the best music videos. The video for New Delhi producer Sahej Bakshi aka Dualist Inquiry’s latest single “Violet” off his second album Dreamcatcher is a curious narrative of recollections of his dreams, with all the bizarreness that the latter tend to bring: waking up in a derelict bedroom, encountering faceless school girls in the other room etc. Directed by the indie favorite Misha Ghose, “Violet” is both visually articulate and perplexing.

Watch the video below:

 

2. Menwhopause: ‘On a Boat’

Hauz Khas Village is not a nice place by night. Or, if you were New Delhi rock band Menwhopause, it’s the best goddamn place for a bender to love benders. Featuring the band’s manager Sahaj Umang Singh Bhatia (and a cameo by Menwhopause) and directed by Haider Hussain Beig, “On a Boat” showcases the once hipster district at its claustrophobic, seediest, dank best—drugs, surreal frames and the reminder that once you’re in too deep, there’s no escaping HKV. Let’s not forget this is easily the darkest party anthem you’ll hear this year.

Watch the video below:

 

3. Mindflew: ‘O Beti’

Through the lens of filmmaker Tushar Prakash, New Delhi psych rockers Mindflew present their own parallel universe, one that includes mad scientists and mob bosses in a drug deal gone wrong, set to kaleidoscopic rock. While vocalist-guitarist Ritwik De is the hapless protagonist caught in the middle of it all, there’s Adityan Nair (from fellow psychedelic rock band The Urban EarlyMen) as a no-fucks given rickshaw driver who gets our vote.

Watch the video below:

 

4. Monica Dogra: ‘Shiver’

With the video for “Shiver,” singer-songwriter Monica Dogra takes the audience into an alternative dimension within an old, art deco theater. Featuring a myriad of surreal characters and crisp cinematography, the video follows dancer and actor Reshma Gajjar as she alternates between two personas: a curious outsider versus a performer who seems to be the star of the peculiar troupe. Set against a combination of stripped-down synth, spoken word poetry and Dogra’s whispery vocals, “Shiver” evokes nostalgia and decadence.

Watch the video below:

 

5. Paradigm Shift: ‘Banjaara’

Paradigm Shift’s dark video for “Banjaara” pack in clouds of floating ink, planetary bodies and disturbing facial deformations on the almost-seven-minute-long song. The Mumbai prog/fusion rock band step away from their previous live performances and play throughs towards a storyline that is about how people get influenced by external things in life and lose track of what they are meant to do.

Watch the video below:

 

6. Parekh & Singh: ‘I Love You Baby, I Love You Doll’

The country’s favorite dream pop duo suit up and mellow down in this folksy serenade from the 2013 album Ocean (originally put out under only guitarist-vocalist Nischay Parekh’s name). Ahead of record’s the re-release on UK label Peacefrog Records, “I Love You Baby, I Love You Doll” sees Parekh and drummer Jivraj Singh traverse a quaint mansion, old letters and a lush, green landscape in a Wes Anderson-inspired clip, which even earned a nod of approval from the American film auteur himself.

Watch the video below:

 

7. Peter Cat Recording Co.: ‘I’m Home’

The New Delhi psychedelic rock band’s video for “I’m Home” follows the journey of Death (portrayed by frontman Suryakant Sawnhey) as he crosses the Great Wall of China and makes his way to a cremation to ‘collect’ the soul of a woman in a red sari (New Delhi-based filmmaker Surabhi Tandon.) Set entirely in slow motion, the video complements Sawhney’s deep, relaxed timbre and hazy vibe of the track. The rest of the band—bassist Rohan Kulshreshtha, guitarist Kartik Pillai and drummer Karan Singh also make an appearance as mourners.

Watch the video below:

 

8. Roshni Baptist: ‘Butterfly’

Mumbai singer-songwriter Roshni Baptist’s second single “Butterfly” carries the musical crux of her debut album Unbound: freedom and self-discovery. The video picturizes the message beautifully around the character of a (male) ballet dancer ambitiously chasing his dream despite adversity. The video plays with shadow and light to create multiple moods, much like the track itself.

Watch the video below:

 

9. Skyharbor: ‘Chemical Hands’

India’s (arguably) biggest metal export returned this year with a country-wide tour, news of a new album and a sci-fi heavy, post-apocalyptic prog metal ballad. In between shots of the Indian/American act working their instruments, the video for “Chemical Hands” rolls out highly saturated, constellation-speckled clips of deserted factories and barren lands—all signaling that we’re “Deprived of all senses/ Embrace the nothingness.”

Watch the video below:

 

10. Vernon Noronha: ‘Come Back Jack’

“Come Back Jack” reimagines Noronha’s own experience of his father going missing in 2013. He began writing it when he finally came to terms with the loss. The black & white video featuring some stellar actors also highlights reasons of his father’s disappearance.

Watch the video below:

(Releases are listed in no particular order)

Compiled by Nirmika Singh, Anurag Tagat, Nabeela Shaikh, Riddhi Chakraborty and David Britto

 

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  • romel dias

    The O-Beti video also features the fab Tetseo Sisters <3

Editor’s Pick: “Mighty Horns” by Nasha

Gig Calendar

  • June 29th, 2017 Smalltalk in Mumbai at Summerhouse Cafe
  • June 29th, 2017 World Music Day ft Neeraj Arya’s Kabir Cafe in Mumbai at Hard Rock Cafe Andheri
  • June 29th, 2017 World Music Day ft Sifar, Anand Bhaskar Collective in Pune at Hard Rock Cafe
  • June 29th, 2017 World Music Day ft Parvaaz in Bengaluru at Hard Rock Cafe
  • June 30th, 2017 Aqua Dominatrix, Squidworks, Paloma & Luna Toke in Mumbai at AntiSocial

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