In the auspices of all things Indian and indie, Ankur Tewari is unmissable. His saccharine croonings on the nature of personal loss and equally personal delight have become road signs for anyone fiddling with indie music in this country. While his shimmering voice and unassuming chordwork may sometimes veer on the edge of lachrymose melancholia,make no mistake – this man suffers from true sentiment. How do I know? The same way you will, when you listen to the following four songs in succession.
Dil Haare: To start with the obvious, this one is the quintessential Tewari heartbreaker. The Ghalat Family accompanies him in this ode to abandonment and affirmed adoration. One is struck by the frank, spare elegance of a man strung on his own sadness. Try not to relate too closely to the songwriting because it will crack through whatever has scabbed your soul. But you probably will.
Duur: Tewari seeks out the space between thoughts, and takes recourse to characteristically precise wordsmithery in order to investigate the gentle melancholy of receding affection. The gentle exhortation to renew human closeness echoes the emotional state of practically half the world’s population at any given time. As always, Ankur & The Ghalat Family take a sliver of an idea and crystallizes it into what seems like the most familiar story in the world.
Dil Beparvah: This song is utterly pivotal to Tewari’s quicksilver artistry, and rightly so. It is possibly one of the most charming excavations of the heart and it’s flippant workings. The mind drifts from the first note into awfully pleasant realms. As is his wont, Tewari outlines the rambunctious nature of human desire, bolstered by the heartrending lyricism of perpetually piercing Prateek Kuhad. Easy to sing along to, and silently provocative when one finds the mindspace to devote to it, the song is a smirking representation of what makes Ankur Tewari’s poesy a source of comfort for countless sad souls who usually aren’t sure why they are sad.
Tu Hee Hai: Hurtling down the streets of Lucknow singing about a never-to-be love that he is absolutely sure of? Quintessential Tewari. The song is simple in premise, and build on an addictive melodic rush. This tribute to maintaining joy when life rejects your request for joy is an earworm with a touch of everyday philosophizing – a surprising blueprint for success.