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Some Mind blowing Non Bollywood Hindi songs I discovered in 2021 (Part 1)

Randhir Prasad Featured Writer
Randhir Prasad

2021 for me was a year I discovered a lot of great music. My playlist increased quite significantly. I found myself researching on quite a few Independent music artists whom I had otherwise not even heard of, or had just heard the name of. So here I am collating below a list of Non Hindi Film/ Non Bollywood Hindi songs which I discovered in 2021.

1. Nasamajh by The Khalnayak

Nasamajh by The Khalnayak

This track came out in 2018 as per it’s Youtube link. This is a Sad break up song, with a flavour of introspection and contemplation. With it’s sublime sounds, high palatability, it has a great repeat value. You could play it on a loop following a breakup or heartbreak sipping on whatever you would sip. The song has just the correct tone to be featured right in a Bollywood movie, wonder why no one has done it already. 

The music is by band members Shivansh Sethi, Divyansh Katyal and Tajinder Singh. Lovely vocals and lyrics both by vocalist Neelkanth Pathak

2. Jogi by Swastik The Band

Jogi by Swastik The Band

I really love this fusion track for the way it presents intense raging love, and also manages to have soulfulness to it. The instrumental portions of this track are specifically so brilliant, they have a life of their own. I also equally admire the video! It accurately conveys the emotion of the song. This track came out in 2015, it took me 6 years to discover it. But I’m happy to have discovered it nonetheless.

Kudos to Swastik The Band members Rohit Joshi, Hardeep Singh, Madusara Liyanage, Parth Koser, Pankaj Sharma, Vipul Chopra. Former members of the band Rishabh Kesar, Karan Verma and Pankaj Verma have contributed too to this track. Lyrics by Karan Kapil.

3. Alag Aasmaan by Anuv Jain

Alag Aasmaan by Anuv Jain

This absolutely light breezy track is really sweet and easy to hear. The track’s title itself mentions the track is recorded with a musical instrument Ukulele which think is the only instrument used here (Just guessing). The lyrics are poetic and just as simple as rest of the song as they describe the uncertainties of those precious rare meets in long distance relationships and also how huge these small joys can be.

This track came out only a year back in 2020. I’m happy to have caught this one early enough. The falsetto parts of the singing are my favourite. Kudos to the solo Writer, composer and the performer of this track, the man himself Anuv Jain.

4. Bawra by Naalayak

Bawra by Naalayak

So this is an Alternative Rock track. It’s a very uplifting and lively track. I discovered a lot of other works of this band this year as well and I must say these guys are very talented. They are a proper Alternative Rock band, and their sound is quite unique.

Coming back to this track, it’s whole theme and lyrics focus on setting one’s mind completely free, and following one’s big dreams without any inhibitions. This track is perfect to brighten one’s mood.

This came out back in 2017. Happy to have discovered it now. The composition and lyrics are by it’s lead vocalist and frontman Sahil Samuel; performed by the whole band who also consists of Akshat Kakkar, Garry Singh and Aashish Kalanta.

5. Mizaaj by The Local Train

Mizaaj by The Local Train

This particular song very magnificently captures the society, and the times we live in. It is a Social, political, psychological commentary. As far as Indie Bands go, they are some of the most talented guys to have come up in the past few years. They are pretty well known too. In just two albums they have displayed such a vast range and such excellence.

Coming back to the song, it is vast and diverse. Love how it portrays our modern society which has just become a slave to whatever so called “content” we are being fed from Media, from barons of Entertainment and Infotainment. The lyrics convey much more than whatever is sung.

A Big Shootout the all the people who have designed the video of this song. The team Ekabhuya, Janmeet Singh, Shivangi Ranawat, Yashwardhan Singh Jhala and Apurva Dandekar. You can watch this song only for it’s video, probably one of the most innovative Indian music video I’ve seen in recent times. It showcases Capitalism, the manipulative media, power play by Keepers of the System, the absence of freedom of speech, restriction on art, music, destruction of environment by the civilization of men… so much, all seen through the lens of a Television head.

I really loved how high pitch vocals are used in this song. This came out in 2018, that’s just 3 years back.

Take a bow The Local Train who consist of Raman Negi, Paras Thakur, Ramit Mehra and Sahil Sarin for this.

6. Kahaani by When Chai Met Toast

Kahaani by When Chai Met Toast

So this is a signature light hearted and hopeful song by a band which specializes in making such songs, and yup, their name is When Chai Met Toast. This is a post breakup song alright but one that looks at it from a more accepting and moving on perspective. And the song makes you feel that way which is quite an achievement. This song is soft and takes it’s time to unfold, but has an excellent repeat value.

The video translates each and every mood of the song. It features Malayalam movie star Anna Ben of Kumbalangi Nights , Helen and Sara’s fame, along with the lead vocalist of the band Ashwin Gopakumar.

This came out in 2020 which is just a year back. They even released a duet version of this track a few months back. But this version is closer to me. The song is composed and performed by When Chai Met Toast consisting of Ashwin Gopakumar, Achyut Jaigopal, Palee Francis and Pai Sailesh. The lyrics are by AnkurTewari who is a well known artist himself.

7. Dil Haare by Ankur Tewari and the Ghalat Family

Dil Haare by Ankur Tewari and the Ghalat Family

This is a happy romantic track, which is also very pleasant and simple to hear. Ankur Tewari’s soft vocals absolutely suit the overall mood. Nothing much to elaborately describe here. This is the sort of song just be listened to and enjoyed.

This came out in 2017, 4 years back. The entire composition and lyrics are unanimously credited to Ankur and the Ghalat Family which consists of Ankur Tewari, Gaurav Gupta, Sid Coutto, Johan Pais and Vivaan Kapoor. I personally like the acoustic version of this track, I feel it sounds much better than the official version of the track the artists have shared on their official Youtube channel.

8. Haan Pyaar Hai by Naalayak

Haan Pyaar Hai by Naalayak

So this is a very breezy peppy romantic track, it wears it’s heart on it’s sleave. It has a full on “Romance in the Air” vibe, the one which is quite missing in Bollywood romantic numbers these days. The supporting vocals are quite playful. I loved how the instrumental portions and vocals entwine.

The video choice for this track is a little different than what you’d expect, especially if you’ve heard the track before watching the track with the video. I’m not a fan of the video but it has a story going in it, which more or less suits the song. Nonetheless, the song is good enough to not care about the video.

The song came out in 2017, 4 years back. It’s written and composed by Naalayak’s frontman Sahil Samuel, performed by the whole band which also include Akshat Kakkar, Garry Singh, and Ashish Kalanta. 

9. Gul by Anuv Jain

Gul by Anuv Jain

This particular track for me is one of those whose entire essence, entire flavour just can’t be described in one post, or even one article. It has the kind of brilliance of inwardness, the roohaniyat that is just beyond description. Well about it’s artist, Anuv Jain, most of the 7-8 singles he’s crafted in last three years are just awesome. He is one artist I really hope, grows much more as time passes.

About this track, it has a simple setup, not very sound heavy, but the inner peace, the sukoon it induces is really something. I used to listen to this track every night sometime before going to sleep when I discovered it first. It’s kind of therauptic, the track carries much of the Jaadugari it’s lyrics describes.

The song has a coming of age quality, as it talks about finding happiness within rather than outside. This song came out in 2021 itself, lucky to have caught this one fast!

Stay tuned for next part of best of songs

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