Top 10 Bollywood Soundtracks of 2013

It's been almost 4 months into 2014 and still Aashiqui 2's "Tum Hi Ho" is every one's hot favourite and is played every hour on some random music channel/radio station daily. Popularity of "Tum Hi Ho" was such a phenomenon year back (when it released) that people had that song as ringtone & caller tunes. I am neither against this song nor do I hate it. In fact, I too love this song. I am even happy that at least with this song people came to know about Mithoon who IMO is still much underrated composer in present day Bollywood inspite of giving some chartbuster soundtracks (Bas Ek Pal, Aggar, Anwar, The Train). But the fact that hurts me is that many people still haven't discovered some underrated gems that came out in 2013.

So here is my list where I will talk about Top 10 Bollywood Soundtracks of 2013 - some known, some unknown & some you might have heard but missed it.

But before you proceed further a RULE you should follow regarding this article -

There is no RIGHT or WRONG in music. Your choices may differ from mine. It's about personal viewpoint & liking.

Composer of the Year - Sachin Jigar

Truly 2014 belonged to young & talented composing duo - Sachin Jigar. From composing for flop films like Jayantabhai Ki Luv Story, Issaq, Ramaiyya Vastavaiyya & I Me Aur Main to hit soundtracks of Shuddh Desi Romance, Go Goa Gone & ABCD - Any Body Can Dance they were consistent throughout the year. None of their soundtracks were boring or noisy & had popular yet genuinely wonderful music. From working in small films to big banners, they consolidated their place in Bollywood with magical soundtrack of Yash Raj Film's Shuddh Desi Romance.

Talented duo Sachin Jigar 
It's always difficult to select which soundtrack enters the top 10 list. Sometimes a soundtrack appeals to you initially but in a long run it doesn't while sometimes you hate a particular soundtrack but after watching that movie you start loving & listening to it.

Soundtracks that missed the Top 10 list -

Goliyon ki Raasleela Ram-Leela (Sanjay Leela Bhansali)
Special 26 (M M Kreem)
Matru ki Bijlee ka Mandola (Vishal Bhardwaj)
Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (Pritam)
3G (Mithoon)
Madras Cafe (Shantanu Moitra)

Top 10 Bollywood Soundtracks of 2013 -

10. David - Mikey McCleary, Prashant Pillai, BramFatura, Maati Baani, Remo Fernandes, Anirudh Ravichander, Modern Mafia & The Lightyears Explode

Even though David was not as impressive as Bejoy Nambiar's cult debut Shaitan (2011) but surely that man has some good sense of music & the way he incorporates them in his films is just brilliant. And probably it is only in his films that you get to listen a song from Indie rock band. Shaitan had a song by death metal band Bhayanak Maut while David offered a great platter of variety with some Indie names like BramFatura, Modern Mafia & The Lightyears Explode. Considering that David's story revolved around 3 time lines (London 1975, Mumbai 1999, Goa 2010) music too was created with a great detail referencing that era. One of the most underrated soundtracks of 2013.

My Pick - Ghum Huye, Mast Kalandar, Out of Control, Ya Hussain & Tore Matware Naina

9. Bhaag Milkha Bhaag - Shankar Ehsaan Loy

After lackluster music in 2011 & 2012 (barring Chittagong & ZNMD), SEL finally got their mojo back with impressive soundtrack of Bhaag Milkha Bhaag. It had some brilliant mix of genres from inspirational tracks to sufi love ballads & even a short "Gurbani" by Daler Mehndi. Soundtrack also saw an assured singing debut by Siddharth Mahadevan & as usual terrific lyrics by Prasoon Joshi.

My Pick - Zinda, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (Rock Version), O Rangrez & Mere Yaar

8. Ek Thi Daayan - Vishal Bhardwaj

It rarely happens that Vishal Bhardwaj - Gulzar combo goes wrong. They have been giving us some great soundtracks since past 2 decades right since Maachis (1994). Ek Thi Daayan was one such short effective soundtrack that had Gulzar's poetry all over it. Being a horror film, VB made sure to have couple of spooky tracks in it. Also try to listen to extremely terrifying background score by Clinton Cerejo.

My Pick - Lautungi Main, Sapna re Sapna & Kaali Kaali

7. ABCD Any Body Can Dance - Sachin Jigar

They became immensely popular with their soundtrack for Remo Dsouza's debut F.A.L.T.U. (2011) & continued their success and popularity with Remo's second film - ABCD Any Body Can Dance. For a dance film what you need is an energetic & foot tapping soundtrack with fusion of various genres and that exactly is delivered by Sachin Jigar here. Though background score is equally fascinating.

My Pick - Duhaai, Bezubaan & Shambhu Sutaya

6. Nautanki Saala! - Mikey McCleary, Falak Shabbir, Rashid Khan, Ayushmann Khurrana & Rochak Kohli

Yet again New Zealander Mikey McCleary spins his magic here with rich magical score. His re-imagination of old classic numbers (Dhak Dhak & So Gaya Yeh Jahaan) were quirky while his original composition too had a fresh feel to it. Entire soundtrack was superbly arranged by Mikey even though he wasn't composer for certain songs & that's what complimented film's SoBo-ish look perfectly.

My Pick - Dil ki Toh Lag Gayi, Draamebaaz & Tu Hi Tu

New Zealander composer Mikey McCleary

5. Go Goa Gone - Sachin Jigar

After Ram Sampath's terrific soundtrack of Delhi Belly (2011), I rarely came across a soundtrack that had outrageously quirky lyrics in it. But Amitabh Bhattacharya is the same man who reinvented his Delhi Belly avatar here with crazy lyrics in trippy "Babaji ki Booti" & Anti Monday anthem "Khoon Choos Le". Sachin Jigar's uber cool music complimented Amitabh's lyrics really well. Also watch out for some amazing editing tricks in both the songs.

My Pick - Babaji ki Booti, Khoon Choos Le & Khushamdeed

4. Raanjhanaa - A R Rahman

No matter what A R Rahman soundtrack is always one of the most anticipated soundtracks of the year. Raanjhanaa was surely one of those soundtracks plus it had Irshad Kamil as lyricist teaming up with ARR after brilliant Rockstar. Rahman pleased us with wide range of genres starting from Folk Classical (Banarasiya, Ay Sakhi, Tum Tak & Raanjhanaa) to contemporary sounds in "Tu Mun Shudi", "Nazar Laaye" & "Aise Na Dekho" to use of aarti chants in "The Land of Shiva". Another great thing about this soundtrack was that Rahman used Shehnaai in almost all songs thus giving tribute to legendary Shehnaai player Ustad Bismillah Khan.

My Pick - Entire Soundtrack is great with wonderful shifts from one genre to another.

3. Kai Po Che - Amit Trivedi

I was fairly disappointed when I knew that this soundtrack by Amit had only 3 tracks. With Swanand Kirkire's fabulous lyrics & Amit's brilliant music made that disappointment disappear. Arshad Khan's melancholic esraj in "Maanjha" still haunts me & soon this short yet sweet soundtrack was on the repeat mode. Also listen to poignant background score by Hitesh Sonik which makers released online. You can listen to entire Original Motion Picture Soundtrack of Kai Po Che including songs & background score here.

My Pick - Amit Trivedi never ceases to amaze me.

2. Shuddh Desi Romance - Sachin Jigar

Shuddh Desi Romance was Sachin Jigar's big ticket to stardom with prestigious YRF producing it. Music had flashes of Rajasthani folk fusion with modern sounds (Jazz, Bossa Nova etc.) & insightful lyrics by Jaideep Sahni. Basically it was the choice of singers (Mohit, Benny, Sunidhi, Shalmali & Divya Kumar) that made this soundtrack a great listen. Sachin Jigar's best work till date.

My Pick - Songs are great no doubt but listen to beautifully orchestrated background scores.

1. Lootera - Amit Trivedi

And.... the Best Soundtrack of 2013 was Amit Trivedi's Lootera. Interestingly this was for the first time that Amit Trivedi collaborated with A R Rahman's regular Chennai String Orchestra. Listen to any song in the soundtrack and you can sense some amazing string sections. From pensive "Shikayatein" to Baul based "Monta Re" to SD Burman style "Sawaar Loon" everything was pitch perfect in this soundtrack. Amit Trivedi hit a great masterstroke here backed by some brilliant lyrics by Amitabh Bhattacharya.
"Kuch maangna baaki nahi, jitna mila kaafi hai".

My Pick - Every song is spectacular. If you still haven't heard it Do yourself a favour by listening to this poetic masterpiece.

Having read the entire list you may be surprised to see not even a single mention of Aashiqui 2 here except the opening paragraph. Frankly speaking Aashiqui 2 was just an average soundtrack which gained immense popularity just because of 2 tracks (Mithoon's Tum Hi Ho & Ankit Tiwari's Sunn Raha Hai Na Tu). Otherwise Jeet Gannguli's compositions were pretty decent & not that great. Having read this you may be infuriated & would be getting ready to type that how the hell did I missed Aashiqui 2 in the list but before you do that hold on.... & READ THE RULE mentioned in the beginning.

Like, share & comment about your Best Soundtracks of 2013 below. It would be glad to know what others think. :)


{ rajiv } at: October 22, 2014 at 10:57 AM said... whoever you are but you missed yeh jawani hai deewani..tracks like kabira(encore) & illahi(reprised) are the best 1 can beat pritam..i too like go goa gone music..which was very u shdnt hv missed yjhd!

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