Review

Various Artists

Awaaz Series 1: Original Soundtracks Recordings From The Archives Of CBS Gramophone Records & Tapes India 1982-1986

Naya Beat • 2023

Bollywood, yes, you know it or you’ve definitely heard of it. It’s the controversial word used to describe the Indian film industry, or more specifically the Mumbai film industry. It’s said to be the biggest in the world. Hollywood may make more money, but Bollywood makes the most movies, and is the undisputed leader. If they are not directed by Neeraj Pandey or Qaushiq Mukherjee, then there will be lots of dancing and singing, but no kissing or sex scenes. And since they are not set to music by Hans Zimmer, Howard Shore or Danny Elfman, then Bappi Lahiri, Amit Kumar or Suresh Wadkar have to take over— see »Awaaz Series 1: Original Soundtracks Recordings From The Archives Of Cbs Gramophone Records & Tapes India 1982-1986«. The compilation released by Naya Beat takes its listeners back to the 1980s, when synths, drum machines and disco dominated India’s pop culture. One example of this is »Mere Jaisi Mehbooba«, a Hindi remake of the Herbie Hancock classic »Rockit«—amazing! The rest is also pretty difficult to fathom, is sprawling, exuberant and daring to the point of being over the top. Retort funk meets disco clones, discount morriconade meets proto-house—and the whole thing is a crazy feast.