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Underrated Bangers - Vannam Vanam

This evening, we drew heavy inspiration from the WREK theme of “Songs you don’t hear on the radio”. But today, our segment featured songs that you don’t even hear on Indian radio. A lot of the songs we’ve played on this show have been underrated but specifically today, we are diving into some of our personal favorites that always leave us wondering, "Why isn't this popular???” 

For both of us, the majority of the songs we picked today were actually pulled from our own playlists that we’ve had for years: Tamil Cafe for me and Telugu Cafe for Vaish. So these are definitely certified underrated bangers. And if you’re ever listening to our show thinking, “Hey, I’d like to hear this song on the radio more", feel free to leave your recommendation! And you might just hear it played in a future show one day.

Here's what we played today:

Deniko Emito - Jodi [Telugu]

  • Composer: Phani Kalyan
  • Singers: Aditya Rao, Satya Yamini
  • Lyricist: Ananth Sreeram

When I first heard this song, let me just say I was completely obsessed - and honestly, I’m still obsessed. I love this song, I love the vibes, I have no idea why it’s not more famous because it’s just a perfect, chill, “at a cafe, sipping on some coffee” typa song. I don’t really need any more explanation. It’s a cute song. Love it. ESPECIALLY Satya Yamini’s part: she is the moment.

Oru Parvaiyile - Eppadi Manasukkul Vanthai (2012), a romantic thriller film [Tamil]

  • Composer: A.J. Daniel
  • Singer: Harish Raghavendra
  • Lyricist: PV Prasath

Our first Tamil song for today is Oru Parvaiyile from the 2012 romantic thriller film Eppadi Manasukkul Vanthai, starring Vishva and Tanvi Vyas in the lead roles.

The song title Oru Parvaiyile means “At a Glance”, and the movie title Eppadi Manasukkul Vanthai means “How did you come inside my mind?”.

This is the most underrated song and film I’ve chosen for today because even the Wikipedia page has such minimal information. But basically, the plot of the movie is the cliche of love at first sight with the childhood friend love triangle trope.

I think out of all the songs I’ve picked for today, this one might just be my favorite, as it’s been on repeat for the longest time. It’s such a pretty and romantic song, and I hope y'all enjoy!

Kalalo Kanu Paape - Kapatadhaari [Telugu]

  • Composer: Simon K. King
  • Singer: Pradeep Kumar
  • Lyricist: Vanamali

This song was third on my Spotify wrapped in 2021 so this definitely goes a long way back.

Kapatadhaari is a neo-noir murder mystery film. This song in particular is about a character losing his loved ones. And this was a song I actually translated completely for a friend once, so here is the translation of the first few lines:

In my dream, my pupil held your image in front of me. 
Then that living/moving memory disappeared while the past joined it as well. 
Imaginations/thoughts of you touch me as waves and pierce my heart.
Your memory burns my mind and follows me as a shadow.

It’s hard to portray the true emotions in a translation, but the lyricist Vanamali and, as you’ll hear for yourself soon, the music director Simon K. King both did especially well in not only portraying pain but also longing and nostalgia - It’s a very beautiful song, lyrically and musically speaking as well.

Oru Maalai Neram - Naan Mahaan Alla (2010), an action film [Tamil]

  • Composer: Yuvan Shankar Raja
  • Singers: Javed Ali, Shilpa Rao
  • Lyricist: Na. Muthukumar

Our next Tamil song for today is Oru Maalai Neram from the 2010 action film Naan Mahaan Alla, starring Karthi, Kajal Aggarwal, Jayaprakash, and Soori.

The song title Oru Maalai Neram means “One Evening Time”, and the movie title Naan Mahaan Alla means “I am not a Saint”.

Basically, in this movie, the main character is an unemployed carefree young man. His father witnesses a kidnapping and becomes the target of a gang of young criminals, so it’s definitely a very interesting and exciting watch. The fight scenes in this film also inspired following movies such as Kaithi, which means “Prisoner”.

This is actually the composer Yuvan Shankar Raja’s 3rd collaboration with the actor Karthi, after the success of his works for the films Paruthiveeran and Paiyaa, a film I absolutely loved since I was a kid, and that I hope to play songs from in a future segment.

Another song from this film, “Iragai Pole”, went viral, but the song I chose, “Oru Maalai Neram” is so underrated, I just had to play it.

Arere Yemaindi - Rendu Rellu Aaru [Telugu]

  • Composer: Vijay Bulganin
  • Singers: Swetha Mohan, Anudeep Dev

This song was sung by Swetha Mohan and Anudeep Dev. Swetha Mohan is amazing. And I can say the same for the music director of this movie, Vijay Bulganin. Vijay Bulganin has been on the rise in the Telugu Industry. Apart from his music direction in a few small-scale films, he’s made multiple independent songs, and he’s also created the soundtrack for a series called Meet Cute. Definitely do check Vijay Bulganin out. I feel like he’s been up and rising recently, but I hope he makes soundtracks for a lot more movies because he honestly has such captivating tunes and he deserves all the chances he’s getting.

Dhinakkudha - Pizza (2012), a horror thriller film [Tamil]

  • Composer: Santhosh Narayanan
  • Singer: Gaana Bala
  • Lyricist: Muthamil

Our next Tamil song for today is Dhinakkudha or Nenaikuthey from the 2012 horror thriller film Pizza, starring Vijay Sethupathi and Remya Nambeesan in the lead roles.

So this movie is actually a very well-known Tamil horror movie. And you may be wondering how a movie called Pizza is a horror movie, but it’s because the story revolves around a pizza delivery man named Michael who somehow finds himself in a mysterious predicament. You should watch the movie to find out what happens, can’t spoil anything yknow, and to hear the rest of the banger soundtrack.

This particular song Dhinakkudha is such an interesting composition that I absolutely love it, so you NEED to hear it for yourself.

Gummadikaya Halwa - Mental Madhilo [Telugu]

  • Composer: Prashanth R Vihari
  • Singer: Hemachandra
  • Lyricist: Vivek Athreya