20th MUSIC MASTANI MOTHLY AWARDS (JUNE 2016)

June’s albums have released, and I must say, it was even more exhausting than May!! And also, ‘Cabaret’ which was postponed from May to June, didn’t release in June, either! 😛

So in this awards session, the albums I will consider are — ‘Housefull 3’, ‘Do Lafzon Ki Kahani’, ‘Dhanak’, ‘Junooniyat’, ‘Te3n’, ‘Raman Raghav 2.0’, ‘Udta Punjab’, ‘Shorgul’, ‘Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara’ and ‘7 Hours To Go’ [‘Sultan’ to be counted in the July awards 🙂 ]

Let’s get going!

 

20th Music Mastani Monthly Awards

♪ MAIN AWARDS

• Singer of the Month (Female) : Monali Thakur for Dhanak (Dhanak)

• Singer of the Month (Male) : Arijit Singh for Tere Bina (Shorgul)

• Composer of the Month (Song) : Clinton Cerejo for Haq Hai (Te3n), Amit Trivedi for Da Da Dasse & Ud-Daa Punjab (Udta Punjab), Amaal Mallik for Kuch Toh Hai (Do Lafzon Ki Kahani), Ankit Tiwari for Ishqe Di Lat (Junooniyat) AND Ram Sampath for Qatl-e-Aam – Unplugged (Raman Raghav 2.0)

{NOTE: This is probably the first and last time so many people will bag the same award on my website!}

• Composer of the Month (Album) : Tapas Relia for Dhanak

• Album of the Month: Dhanak (Music by: Tapas Relia; Lyrics by: Manoj Yadav, Mir Ali Husain & Tapas Relia; Singers: Shivamm Pathak, Papon, Vibha Saraf, Chet Dixon, Devu Khan Manganiyar, Monali Thakur, Abwar Khan Manganiyar, Swaroop Khan & Niyaz Khan; Music On: Times Music/Junglee Music)

• Musical Jodi of the Month (Best Duet) : Amit Trivedi & Vishal Dadlani for Ud-daa Punjab (Udta Punjab) AND Ankit Tiwari & Tulsi Kumar for Ishqe Di Lat (Junooniyat)

• Lyricist of the Month: Mir Ali Husain for Dhanak (Dhanak)

 

♪ SONG AWARDS

• Best Romantic Song: Ishqe Di Lat (Junooniyat) AND Kuch Toh Hai (Do Lafzon Ki Kahani)

• Best Dance Song: Taang Uthake (Housefull 3) AND Paagalon Sa Naach (Junooniyat)

• Best Sad Song: Kyun Re (Te3n) AND Bhool Saari Baat (Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara)

• Best Club Song: Qatl-e-Aam (Raman Raghav 2.0) AND Ud-daa Punjab (Udta Punjab)

• Best Classical-Based Song: Dhanak (Dhanak) AND Tere Bina (Shorgul)

• Best Song With A Western Influence: Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara (Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara) AND Haq Hai (Te3n)

• Best Song With A Folk Influence: Jeene Se Bhi Zyaada Jeeyein, Mehandi AND Dhanak (Dhanak)

• Song With Best Use of Fusion: Rootha (Te3n), Qatl-e-Aam (Raman Raghav 2.0) AND Dum-A-Dum (Dhanak)

• Best Backing Vocals: Haq Hai (Te3n)

• Best Sound Effects in A Song: Da Da Dasse (Udta Punjab)

• Best Retro-Styled Song: Behooda (Raman Raghav 2.0)

• Best Humorous Song: ‘Pyaar Ki’, ‘Taang Uthake’, ‘Malamaal’ AND ‘Fake Ishq’ (Housefull 3) [Supposedly humorous!]

And a new category which really needed to be introduced:

• Best Rap in A Song: Vishal Dadlani for Ud-Daa Punjab (Udta Punjab)

 

♪ SPECIAL AWARDS

• Bandar Kya Jaane Adrak Ka Swaad (Best Album That Went Pretty Much Unnoticed / Most Underrated Album) : Dhanak (Times Music / Junglee Music), Te3n (T-Series) AND Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara (Zee Music Company)

• Newcomer(s) of the Month:

– Newcomer of the Month (Composer) : Niladri Kumar for Tere Bina (Shorgul)

– Newcomer of the Month (Singer — Female) : N/A

– Newcomer of the Month (Singer — Male) : Vishal Mishra for Shaam-O-Sehar (Shorgul)

• Music Label of The Month: Times Music / Junglee Music (Dhanak)

• Most Unusual, But Awesome Choice of Singer: Kanika Kapoor for Da Da Dasse (Udta Punjab)

 

I hope you agreed with the awards! We’ll meet again next month with awards.

Till then, these are some of the reviews you would get to read:

Reviews This Month: Madaari, Dishoom, Great Grand Masti and more!

ACHCHAM YENBADHU MADAMAIYADA (MUSIC REVIEW): Southern Spice – Tamil (Tamil Special)

The first time I’m reviewing a Tamil movie’s music, in spite of thinking of doing it many times…! Excited as never before!


Music Album Details
♪ Music by: A.R. Rahman
♪ Lyrics by: Madhan Karky, Vignesh Shivan, Thamarai & Pavendar Bharathidasan
♪ Music Label: Divo Music / VMS Music / Publishing Sdn Bhd
♪ Music Released On: 17th June 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 9th September 2016100000x100000-999 (5)

 

To hear the full songs of this album on Gaana CLICK HERE

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE

 


Achcham Yenbadhu Madamaiyada is an upcoming Tamil (dubbed into Telugu) action/romance film that stars Silambarasan and Manjima Mohan in lead roles. The movie is directed by Gautham Menon, and produced by Reshma Ghatala, Jayaram, Elred Kumar, Gautham Menon and Venkat Somasundaram. Well, what made me come to this album was the music director. No prizes for guessing that it is A.R. Rahman. The composer had a good end to last year with his Hindi album ‘Tamasha’, which I unfortunately had to miss! It was a great conclusion to his account in the year which started with the Tamil flick, ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’, which will also coincidentally be his opening album to 2017, except, in Hindi, for ‘OK Jaanu’. He opened 2016 with his sci-fi Tamil movie, ’24’, and now he comes back with this Tamil album. Getting frustrated of him not coming into Bollywood for quite a while but doing so many Tamil movies, I decided to go review his Tamil albums. 😛 As it is, I haven’t reviewed a Rahman album since decades!! :O 😛 This is just a practice review, to get ready for his upcoming Hindi albums ‘Mohenjo Daro’ and ‘OK Jaanu’! And hopefully, ‘Sachin: A Billion Dreams’ of we gt the soundtrack album! 🙂 So here we go!!


1. Showkali
Singers ~ Aditya Rao, Aaryan Dinesh Kanagaratnam & Sri Rascol, Rap Lyrics by ~ Aaryan Dinesh Kanagaratnam & Sri Rascol, Lyrics by ~ Vignesh Shivan 

Rahman starts off the album with an infectious hip-hop number that is very, very “with the times”, and would appeal to the youth of today. The song is not exactly what would come into your mind when you think of Rahman, even though he has already proved his talent in catering to the youth many times in the past, most of them being Tamil ventures. Rahman’s composition is very tough to follow and grasp, but nevertheless, it appeals for as long as it is playing. Rahman sure does know how to weave magic into all his songs, even when there’s no scope of doing so! The composition is mostly made up of random phrases (of course, I can’t understand the lyrics.) with random tunes that really serve as an entertaining cocktail of noises and sounds. The arrangements are mind-blowing and really go well with the theme of hip-hop. Techno beats have been used to give a booming and appealing structure to the song. Various attractions like a digital sound and a very typical EDM noise, really make the song as cool as possible, not to mention enjoyable. An Arabic-styled percussion and strings sets in, midway through the song, and gives a very different feel to the song. And towards the end, is when Rahman gets into his very controversial experimental mode. (Controversial because so many like it while just as many don’t!) I, for one, loved it the very first time, though the song is definitely not something I regularly would like! Towards the end, Rahman cranks up the tempo and provides a very entertaining dappankuthu rhythm, after which the total structure of the song changes and turns into a kind of free-for-all! The beats are just tooooo good there! Especially those digital twinkly beats that started the song off. As for vocals, Aditya gets a very less scope to spread out his wings, as the rapper takes center-stage and attracts all attention towards himself. Sri Rascol must be applauded for such a mindblowingly rapid rap! 😀 It was a fascinating thing to hear! I can’t differentiate between Aditya and Aaryan though, but I must say whatever voices I heard were impressive, so I can’t say that any one of them sang bad. 😀 The hookline is very weird, but very appealing as well! As for the lyrics, I don’t know what they mean, but the song as a whole sent positive vibes through me! Rahman impresses with a youthful hip-hop number! A brave venture that would never have worked out in Bollywood, sadly! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

2. Idhu Naal
Singers ~ Aditya Rao & Jonita Gandhi, Lyrics by ~ Madhan Karky

Up next is a romantic song, which has Rahman written all over it. When Rahman composes these simple, sweet and innocent romantic songs, without the heavy and dark notes (like ‘Hai Rama’ from ‘Rangeela’ and the like), it always turns out to be a profitable venture. Rahman stays sweet and simple with the composition, not trying to make it very complicated, but making it just right, so that it appeals to the masses and the classes alike. The mukhda is really beautiful, starting directly with the title of the song, and taking it softly from there, with a cute bridge from each line to the next. The antara takes an even sweeter form, what with Jonita’s voice making it all the more sweet. The variations in the composition are perfectly handled by both the singers, who do a great job to shine in the great composition. Aditya gets more scope here to shine, and what does he do? Shine, of course!! He sings with a lot of zest and is beautifully complemented by Jonita with her sweet and feathery voice. Her humming throughout the song, behind Aditya’s lines, gives more charm to the lines. Her own stanza in the antara, she manages with ease, and she sounds a lot like Chinmayi, who coincidentally, has sung the Telugu version of the song! 😀 Arrangements are heavenly. Fingersnaps give a good beat to the song, while drums along with a scintillating electronic loop (the one that starts off the song) help to carry the melody forward. Guitars are also audible in the background. The interludes are blissful, with beautiful techno sounds playing very melodically. Piano notes take the interludes to different levels altogether. A very exquisite backing chorus gives the song a very Westernized touch, and I just loved that inexpressibly! The “idhu varai yaedhume” portions joined with other lines each time, all the most majestic of the whole song, and they are what I keep waiting for like a loyal pet dog. :p (Yes, I’m okay with calling myself a dog for them, too!!) Youthful, melodious and a song full of innocent romance. How I wish Rahman was Jeet Gannguli or Ajay-Atul, and that he would remake his Tamil songs into Hindi!! 😂😂😂 #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Rasaali
Singers ~ Sathya Prakash & Shashaa Tirupathi, Lyrics by ~ Thamarai

Let me tell you guys, this song is the sole reason I decided to review this album! It is a song that will leave you speechless, thoughtless, senseless and whatnot. Rahman creates another very alluring romantic song, that sounds very South-indian, yet will appeal to everyone! It will just take one time for you to listen to it and make it your favourite song ever! For me, it is no doubt one of Rahman’s best in his recent works. It starts off weird with a spooky sound like a bat’s, or a horse neighing. But then it completely transforms into a cute, sweet, indescribable romantic song full of magnificence. The composition is just so marvelous, that it gives you the goosebumps within the first minute itself, and though it is biologically impossible, the goosebumps don’t go away until the song is over. 😛 Rahman has infused a very Carnatic classical touch into a modern-sounding romantic song. I’ll explain. The arrangements are colossal. There is a whole interlude devoted to Carnatic instruments!!! The song starts off with its mukhda immersed in guitars that are purely soulful to the core. The mukhda itself is unexplainably BLISSFUL! The way two words have been repeated in the very first line, is what I loved the most! The composition has the power to lull you to sleep, but at the same time, it is very refreshing. After the guitar-led mukhda is over, the guitars hand over the relay baton to the Carnatic instruments, with a wonderful blend of thavil, manjeeras and a breathtaking violin played in a very Carnatic style. It is joined by a flute later on, and that just adds to the magic. The antaras have the many twists and turns like a Carnatic raaga. Though Sathya Prakash does remarkably well in the first one, Shashaa does his career’s best nuances in complete Carnatic style in the second interlude, right before she takes over the second antara to herself as well! Her murkiyaan are tooooo perfect! It is the hookline though, where most of the beauty is concentrated. An elongated word, Rasaaaaliiii steals away your heart. The song ends very softly with Sathya almost whispering into your ear. With a perfect fusion of appealing techno sounds and Carnatic elements, Rahman provides an earworm that is to be cherished forever! Special, special mention to Shashaa’s beautiful Carnatic solo! 👏👏 #5StarHotelSong!!

 

4. Avalum Naanum
Singer ~ Vijay Yesudas, Lyrics by ~ Pavendar Bharathidasan

The next song sees Rahman stepping back into innocent mode, with a sweet-as-honey romantic song from a man’s point of view. Mostly, in Bollywood, we hear such songs in a female’s voice, like the recent ‘Dil Ye Ladaku’ (Saala Khadoos) which was a sugar-sweet romantic song. Here, Vijay Yesudas, with a voice as silky as his father’s, is in top form, and renders the song with great ease and skilled sweetness. Rahman’s melody, again, is very sweet. This time, he introduces ballroom waltz elements into the song, which lifts it up levels higher. The composition has its appeal in its simple structure. The hookline is beautiful, with the title of the song alternating with other lines, and this going on for quite some time. But it is really sweet! Rahman’s arrangements win again in this one, with strings (Chennai Strings Orchestra) and flutes taking the front seat. The use of the strings make the song sound oh-so-graceful in the waltzy theme. It is the first interlude that wins over your heart, though, with the violins lulling you away to la-la-land. It sounds so majestic! It is when the flute kicks in, when you feel completely drowned into the song. The antara follows with another cute tune. Vijay sings very well, and it sounds so sweet, you can’t help but keep on listening for his next lines. Guitars and fingersnaps join here too, later on, and sound great while they’re there! MORE BLISS! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

5. Thalli Pogathey
Singers ~ Sid Sriram, Aparna Narayanan, Aaryan Dinesh Kanagaratnam, Rap Lyrics by ~ Aaryan Dinesh Kanagaratnam, Lyrics by ~ Thamarai

With one club song and three back-to-back romantic songs, Rahman comes back to the club, EDM and youth genre to conclude the album with. As it turns out, this was the first song to release, though. This time, Rahman once more makes it huge with the genre. He avoids breaking into a very imposing and fast-paced tune; instead, he does everything with a very slow, entrancing pace, which manages to make the song work. However! Yes, there is a “however” to everything! However, the song is not as catchy as it should be, with the impressive beats. The familiarity takes its toll on the song; so many of Rahman’s songs have been similar in both composition and beats. The song gets a bit monotonous after a certain amount of time, nevertheless it is a good attempt, considering the catchy beats. Sid Sriram does well with the main portions, while ADK raps in a cool manner too, yet not really impressing as much as I feel it should have. Aparna steps in for a few backing vocals, and so has very little scope to showcase her voice. It is the arrangements that save the song, with the electronic beats actually acting as its lifeguard. They appeal and Rahman does them beautifully, each and every time. A great attempt, but gets too monotonous and wears out after some time, and it is long!!


Achcham Yenbadhu Madamaiyada is a very, very impressive album. I just touched it because of one song, and found four other great songs, out of which one may lag behind the others, but what does that matter?! All in all, it is another out-of-the-park shot by Rahman, that will surely get at least three of its songs (the romantic ones) into people’s hearts forever. Maturity in the romance, and youth in the rest, is what this album is all about. A treat for Rahman lovers!!

 

Final Rating for This Album: सा < रे < ग < म < प < ध < नी < सां

Note: The letter which is underlined is the final rating.

Recommended Listening Order: Rasaali > Avalum Naanum > Idhu Naal > Showkali > Thalli Pogathey 

 

Which is your favourite song from Achcham Yenbadhu Madamaiyada? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

A WEAK AND UNDEDICATED ATTEMPT!! (7 HOURS TO GO – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Sugat-Shubham & Hanif Shaikh
♪ Lyrics by: Shraddha Bhilave, Sugat Dhanvijay, Hanif Shaikh & Manoj Yadav
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company
♪ Music Released On: 13th June 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 24th June 2016

7 Hours To Go Album Cover

7 Hours To Go Album Cover

 

To hear the full songs of this album on Saavn CLICK HERE

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


7 Hours To Go is an upcoming Bollywood investigative thriller, starring Shiv Pandit, Sandeepa Dhar and Natasa Stankovic is lead roles. The movie has been directed by Saurabh Varma and produced by Nitika Thakur. The movie revolves around a man who has kidnapped seven people as hostages, and asks the police to solve a crime within 7 hours. The music of the movie has been given by debutant duo Sugat-Shubham, and a man who we know as the mastermind behind songs like ‘Aye Khuda’ (Paathshaala) and ‘Tose Naina’ (Mickey Virus), Hanif Shaikh. The latter has composed one song out of four, while the remaining three are by the duo. Out of those three, one is in two versions, making it a total of only three original songs. Hanif’s song has been remixed by Sumit Sethi. Let’s see what this short album for a thriller has to offer! 🙂


1. Tere Naina
Singers ~ Mohammed Irfan & Sarodee Borah, Music by ~ Sugat-Shubham, Lyrics by ~ Shraddha Bhilave & Sugat Dhanvijay

It’s melancholia that starts off the album, with this song, a romantic sad song. The newcomer duo don’t seem to bother whether they’ve made the song catchy or good enough, and they seem to be so careless that the notes in the song don’t even complement each other, and it seems like they change tracks unnecessarily, and so many times, too! At one time, the composition is very pleasant, while the next moment, it turns very sinister and melancholic. For example the mukhda seems like the starting of a proper romantic song, while the hookline and antara is so heavily melancholic, that it just seems out of place. The arrangements are typical Bollywood sad song arrangements, with durns and rock guitars and acoustic guitars. The piano too, fails to gain your attention. The singers seem uncomfortable as well. Sarodee Borah’s voice isn’t as sweet as required for the composition, and I feel someone like Palak Muchhal or Akriti Kakar would’ve been way better. Mohammed Irfan fails to impress, and that’s very rare! His usually soft-as-silk voice doesn’t sound completely mellifluous here, but wherever it does, it sounds good. He does better out of the two. Shraddha and Sugat come together to write a very ordinary song, which contains all the Bollywood clichés right from “Tu Hi hai Saanson mein” to “Mere Dil Ki gustaakhiyaan maaf Karna”, which will just make you roll your eyes. A below average debut by the duo. Even the presence of a strong male singer cannot save this mediocre composition!

 

2. Zinda Hota Mein / Zinda Hota Mein (Reprise)
Singers ~ Nikhil D’Souza / Jubin Nautiyal, Music by ~ Sugat-Shubham, Lyrics by ~ Shraddha Bhilave

The next song has two versions. One by Nikhil D’Souza and one by Jubin Nautiyal. Thanks to the makers of the movie, now we can actually hear the difference between their voices. 😛 Anyway, Nikhil has been given charge of the original version, while Jubin takes up the reprise. The composition by the duo is very slow-paced and melancholic, but this time, the melancholia actually appeals to the listener. The notes have been placed together well and sound perfectly emotional as a whole. The mukhda starts right off, without any prelude or anything, and hooks you from the beginning. The first antara too has the same tune as the mukhda, while the second has a different tune to it, which is all-the-more appealing. What’s most important is that the song doesn’t even try to be good. It’s just innately good. 😛 The mukhda repeats after the second antara, and the hookline wraps up the song. All in all, the song composition and structure is very good. The arrangements in the original version are more sober, with barely audible beats that must be to highlight the lyrics and vocals. There are highly intriguing strings throughout the song, and good percussion in the hookline, though. Rock has been used, but very softly. However, the reprise takes the rock into full swing, with blaring guitars and drums which have shed all their inhibitions that they had in the original version. Personally, I found the reprise’s arrangements better. The strings are way more ravishing here, and make an almost climactic ambience, before the hookline. The guitars have been used wonderfully in the prelude and interludes. This version has more instrumental pieces than the first one, and that makes it more enjoyable. I can see that both versions will play an important role in the progression of the story, and both have different themes. Coming to vocals, Jubin impressed way more than Nikhil. Texture, dedication, pronunciation — they’re all better in Jubin’s version. Nikhil’s voice texture sounds weird, and it seems like he has not sung wholeheartedly, but Jubin has sung confidently and dedicatedly. As for pronunciation, why does Nikhil say “saajishon” instead of “saazishon”!? And why didn’t the duo rectify that? 😛 Anyway, Jubin’s is better. Shraddha’s lyrics are way better than those which she wrote in the previous song, along with Sugat. All in all, the song is a ravishing experience, which will bring one to tears if heard with a proper sound system! Nikhil’s version misses it, but Jubin’s version gets to be a #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Dalinder Dance
Singer ~ Hanif Shaikh, Music by ~ Hanif Shaikh, Lyrics by ~ Hanif Shaikh & Manoj Yadav

Hanif Shaikh, the composer of superhit calm songs like ‘Aye Khuda’ and other songs from “Paathshaala” and ‘Tose Naina’ (Mickey Virus), steps in for the last song of the short album, a dance song as is evident from its name. Although it is a dance song, it isn’t enjoyable at all. It is a sheer disappointment from the composer. The composition is something that seems to be Bollywood’s try at making a ‘Zingaat’ (Sairat), but they seem to not have understood that only Ajay-Atul can make that kind of stuff. 😂 Random notes put together to result in an utterly annoying tune, rendered in a sickly annoying voice of the composer himself, is not your ideal dance song. I doubt it’ll be a rage among the masses either! The lyrics (Manoj Yadav — ‘Pyaar Ki Maa Ki’, ‘Veer Veer Veerappan’ — shall I say anything more? You get my point) are disgraceful. By the way, ‘Mercedes’ is pronounced as “Merkadis”, which not even someone who is illiterate does, nowadays. Hanif & Manoj come together and write something that makes as much sense as a bird chirping. Even birds chirping, make more sense than this. :\ SKIP!


7 Hours To Go has one out of four tracks worthwhile of listening. The others are a random blend of melancholia and randomness. The duo has performed better than Hanif, but still not so good. The album could have been many times better! It was overall a weak attempt, undedicated and incomplete!

 

Final Rating for This Album: सा < रे <  < म < प < ध < नी < सां

Note: The letter which is underlined is the final rating.

Recommended Listening Order: Zinda Hota Mein (Reprise) > Zinda Hota Mein > Tere Naina > Dalinder Dance

 

Which is your favourite song from 7 Hours To Go? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

SILENCE MAKES THE MOST SHORGUL! (SHORGUL – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Niladri Kumar & Lalit Pandit
♪ Lyrics by: Kapil Sibal, Sameer Anjaan & Alok Ranjan Jha
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company
♪ Music Released On: 13th June 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 24th June 2016

Shorgul Album Cover

Shorgul Album Cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hear the full songs of this album on YouTube:


Shorgulis an upcoming Bollywood thriller drama starring Jimmy Sheirgill, Ashutosh Rana, Sanjay Suri, Narendra Jha, Hiten Tejwani, Eijaz Khan, Aniruddh Dave & Suha Gezen. The film is directed by Jitendra Tiwari P. Singh, and produced by Swatantra Vijay Singh & Vyas Verma. The music has been composed by veteran music composer Lalit Pandit, of the Jatin-Lalit duo. After parting ways with his brother, Jatin Pandit, their last memorable work being ‘Fanaa’, Lalit has composed for many films like ‘Besharam’, ‘Dulha Mil Gaya’, ‘Spark’, ‘Life Mein Kabhie Kabhiee’ and of course, his most memorable solo work, ‘Munni Badnaam Hui’ from ‘Dabangg’. The composer has composed three songs out of four, for the album, and I’m looking forward to hear what he has to offer. Behind the fourth track, (technically the first, according to the track listing) is the hand of the famous Indian sitar player, classical and fusion musician, Niladri Kumar, as guest composer. He has worked with many Bollywood music directors such as A.R. Rahman, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Pritam, M.M. Kreem, Vishal Bhardwaj & Sajid-Wajid. The sitars and zitars you heard in songs like ‘Chup Chup Ke’ (Bumty Aur Babli), ‘Alvida’ (Life In A… Metro), ‘Crazy Kiya Re’ (Dhoom 2), ‘Dagabaaz Re’ (Dabangg 2), ‘Dheere Jalna’ (Paheli) and ‘Naina Thag Lenge’ (Omkara), have been played by this very maestro. Having played in such noteworthy songs for so many years, the man has decided to come to the forefront by composing for this movie, his first song in a Bollywood album. His first album was for the Kannada movie ‘Niruttara’, whose songs released just about a week ago. The mere names of the composers have drawn me towards this album, and so I’m expecting a lot from it. Let us see how much shor-gul (publicity/noise/excitement) this album is able to create!!


1. Tere Bina

Singer ~ Arijit Singh, Backing Vocals by ~ Awaaz Children’s Choir & Jonita Gandhi, Music by ~ Niladri Kumar, Lyrics by ~ Kapil Sibal

The album is started off by the sitar maestro, Niladri Kumar. Niladri very aptly ropes in Arijit Singh to sing his song, which is a scintillating love ballad with all the right notes put together perfectly into a soothing blend, resulting in a calm and lovely romantic song. Naturally, the song is totally raaga-based, and with Niladri on board, this was expected. The composer has created a very lulling and tranquil atmosphere, something that will calm you down so much, that you will forget all of your stress, and just drown into the sea of the music. The raaga-inspired, very mature, composition reminds me of earlier this year’s ‘Sab Dhan Maati’ (Jai Gangaajal), which was also raaga-based, and sung by Arijit, but was conceptualised by Salim-Sulaiman. Anyway, before I go off on a tangent, the soothing composition lulls you to sleep, and at the same time, refreshes you so much. The arrangements are beautiful, blissful and heavenly. Nothing better could have been expected. Piano leads gracefully, while wonderful synthetic beats help to give you a beat to tap your feet and snap your fingers to. Of course, Niladri has placed wonderful zitars throughout the song, and this is what makes it sound ever-so-euphoric. The strings (violins) graciously support the backing arrangements. Guitars (Warren Mendonsa) are easy to miss, but do well in their portions. What’s special about the song is the polished voice of Arijit Singh, who hasn’t really sung such a beautiful song since a long time. His classical training has paid off here, and he stuns with the effortlessness with which he has sung the minute details and nuances in the song. What’s more, the makers of the film have employed a choir of underprivileged girls, trained by Arjun Nair, Prince Mulla, Jennifer Bansode and Samira Kelkar for not less and not more than 30 days, after which they got to feature in the same track as Arijit. What is more godlike than giving underprivileged kids a chance to feature on a Bollywood song? This was a great step played by the makers of the movie, and the girls sound awesome in the track; they sing both in the beginning as well as towards the end of the song. Jonita as a backing vocalist, doesn’t have much scope to shine, but if you pay attention, she sounds perfect with her classical rendition, and it has left me longing for a solo version by her! Kapil Sibal, on his third Bollywood film as lyricist after “Bandook” and “Dilli Gang”, writes beautiful lyrics, and must think of becoming a full-time Bollywood composer! 😀 The words are like a ghazal and sound ravishing. Something that has given me the goosebumps, something that will do nothing but surprise you a lot! Arijit’s top-class rendition of Niladri’s invigorating composition makes this song a #5StarHotelSong!!

 

2. Shaam O Seher

Singer ~ Vishal Mishra, Music by ~ Lalit Pandit, Lyrics by ~ Sameer AnjaanLalit steps into the album with the next song, another romantic song. This time, the song has signs of a budding romance. Its light and happy-go-lucky mood tells you that. The innocence of the romance contrasts the mature romantic song that we heard just before this. lalit does quite well with the composition, considering that he was a composer in the 90s, and most of them have not evolved with time. However, Lalit has evolved, and that is evident the breeze of fresh air which is this song. The composition is easy on the ears and it easy for a typical Bollywood listener to get attracted to it, as well as the ones wanting something different. The hookline is really breezy. The arrangements are pleasant as well, with the regular, but functional combination of guitars and strings to set up the romantic atmosphere. Beats are synthetic here as well, and sound good. The rhythm is a pleasant one, which instantly makes you move to it. The whistling at the end sounds very cute, as well. The singer, Vishal Mishra, is perfect with his rendition. He sounds like Jubin Nautiyal at places, Ash King at other places, Javed Ali at others, and even Arijit sometimes, yet his voice appeals to the ears. Sameer’s lyrics are on the typical Bollywood lines, with the hookline going into very templated territory. Nevertheless, the composition makes everything valid. A pleasing and innocent romantic song, which is fortunately NOT sung by Shaan!!!! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Mast Hawa

Singer ~ Pratibha Singh Baghel, Music by ~ Lalit Pandit, Lyrics by ~ Kapil Sibal

The third song on the album is a bigger evidence of how much Lalit has evolved to match up to the current generation. Lalit has tried to  present a song that would normally have been given a desi touch with dhols, and the like, in a totally different manner. He has given a hip-hop touch, which turns out to be a saviour for an otherwise average song. The composition makes it clear that it is an item song, but the arrangements totally contradict its nature. The composition is very amateurish, with the hookline repeating for over half of its duration. The mukhda is formed by the hookline repeating for an infinite number of times, and the antara fails to gain our attention. The hip-hop beats will remind you of Salim-Sulaiman’s ‘Dance Pe Chance’ (Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi). However, the arrangements are what makes the song listenable at least once. Lalit has infused a beautiful techno-desi fusion and tried something new, something I think he has never tried before. The techno sounds are what get you grooving, and the very captivating flute entraps you. The guitars provide a nice riff in the antaras. The second interlude is stolen by a harmonium, which is very appealing. Pratibha renders the composition quite decently. I mean, there is no other way she could’ve sung it, so it works, though it isn’t excellent. She is better in soft songs, I feel. I also feel this was a song Lalit must’ve made keeping Sunidhi in mind. Kapil’s lyrics are not so good here, so I don’t know if he should still take up the idea of being a full-time lyricist. Arrangements save the song, which otherwise suffers from a weak composition, lyrics and vocals!

 

4. Baroodi Hawa

Singer ~ Aishwarya Nigam, Music by ~ Lalit Pandit, Lyrics by ~ Alok Ranjan Jha

After a ‘Mast Hawa’, here comes the ‘Baroodi Hawa’. The song isn’t really like its title. On reading the title, I was under the impression that the song is an upbeat number. If you look at it, it is one, but not in the way you must be thinking. The song is a pathos-filled rock number, full of melancholia. The composition is yet again, quite decent, but not exactly instantly appealing, either. The pace is pretty slow for it to make an impact, but it definitely makes you emotional for as long as it plays. The arrangements are common Bhatt arrangements with rock guitars, drums and intense percussion. A backing choir impresses in the song. Aishwarya, a singer who I’ve heard mostly singing upbeat desi songs for Lalit, like ‘Munni Badnaam Hui’ (Dabangg) and ‘Tere Mohalle’ (Besharam), has moulded himself into this mode for the first time, and actually does great!! However, here he doesn’t sound as much like his namesake, Sonu Nigam, as he did in every other song he sang. The hookline isn’t too imposing, but it isn’t appealing at all. Alok’s lyrics are pretty good, though. They carry the melancholia to the listener very well. The song as a whole serves its purpose and I have to admit that, but it lacks in the composition and innovation department! Still, a pleasant song from Lalit! Not bad, but not great. Quite decent.


Shorgul has a surprise enclosed in the form of a wonderful classical gem by sitarist Niladri Kumar. He scores full marks with his single song on the album. Lalit Pandit, too performs decently, but he has undercooked the songs just a bit, otherwise, they would’ve turned out great as well. The silent songs in this album, would make more ‘shorgul’ as opposed to the ones that should! 

 

Final Rating for This Album: सा < रे < ग < म <  < ध < नी < सां

Note: The letter which is underlined is the final rating.

Recommended Listening Order: Tere Bina > Shaam O Seher > Baroodi Hawa > Mast Hawa

 

Which is your favourite song from Shorgul? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

 

REFRESHING AWARA-PAN!! (HAI APNA DIL TOH AWARA – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Ajay Singha, Subhash Pradhan & Pervez Quadir
♪ Lyrics by: Mohit Pathak, Pinky Poonawala, Bulleh Shah & Kumaar
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company
♪ Music Released On: 7th June 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 24th June 2016

Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara Album Cover

Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara Album Cover

 

To hear the full songs of this album on Saavn CLICK HERE

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara is an upcoming Bollywood rom-com, starring Sahil Anand (‘Student of The Year’, ‘Babloo Happy Hai’) and Niyati Joshi. The film has been directed by Monjoy Joy Mukerji, and produced by Deepakk R. Gupta, Neha D. Gupta and Monjoy Joy Mukerji. The music of the film has been given by Ajay Singha, Subhash Pradhan & Pervez Quadir. Ajay Singha impresses me with remakes of old Bollywood songs that play on ‘Sony Mix’ channel, and it is his first Bollywood album, so expecting a lot from him as his pop album ‘In Raahon Mein’ was something worth hearing too. Meanwhile, Subhash Pradhan has composed for Bollywood movies like ‘Mere Dost Picture Abhi Baaki Hai’ (2012) and ‘Doctor I Love You’ (2015), which I’ve never heard of before. Therefore, there are not many expectations from him, but more than zero for sure. The third composer, Pervez Quadir, is a famous pop singer/composer, but I’ve never heard any of his works, so again, I can’t have any expectations as such. All I can hope for, is that all three composers do something great to make this small album big with their music! Ajay leads the album with four songs, while Subhash and Pervez each compose one song each. Let’s see how the music of ‘Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara’ turns out!!


1. Chu Liya
Singers ~ Papon & Neha Rajpal, Music by ~ Ajay Singha, Lyrics by ~ Mohit Pathak

Ajay Singha opens the album with a serene love duet with a predominant calm and dulcet sound to it. The composer has managed to create a very sweet love song that would instantly grab the listener’s attention. A very pleasant Assamese rhythm manages to keep you listening for more and more magic, and gives a very pleasant North-Eastern touch to the song. Ajay’s composition is not the usual Bollywood romantic song, but oozes with positivity. It makes you feel so good, and that is why it just wins your heart. Ajay has wonderfully used the Northeast flavour to make the song lovable, and it turns out to be beautiful. Acoustic guitars complement the usual Northeast folksy arrangements like flute and the percussion (dafli). The flute is the star of the song, and leaves a very happy impression on you. The very raw sound effects liek that of water and shakers make you feel so close to nature and if you close your eyes and hear it, you can just imagine a beautiful scenery in front of you.  The singers use their talent to take the song to another level. Papon in a romantic duet is a very rare thing to hear (I think the last romantic duet he sang was ‘Tu’ (Bobby Jasoos) with Shreya Ghoshal) and he sounds perfect in the song, more so because he is from the Northeast. 😀 On the other hand, Neha, a regular in Marathi albums, sounds weaker and more amateurish, but pleases you nevertheless. She sounds like Version 2 of Sadhana Sargam. Mohit Pathak, Ajay’s lyricist for ‘In Raahon Mein’, his pop album, writes pleasant lyrics as well, with Bollywood written all over them, yet sounding good with the composition and arrangements. A very soft and pleasant love song, that is a refreshing break from typical overdramatic love songs. #5StarHotelSong!!

 

2. Meheram Mere
Singer ~ Mohit Chauhan, Music by ~ Ajay Singha, Lyrics by ~ Mohit Pathak

Ajay continues with the pleasant breeze of music with his second song, this time crooned by Mohit Chauhan, perfect for this kind of song. The composition has shades of Pritam in its every note and line. Ajay has presented another pleasant romantic song, this time with a very soothing Sufi touch to it. The hookline is a very trademark Pritam-esque composition, and one wonders whether Pritam himself has helped with it. The mukhda is totally composed in a style that Pritam has become famous for mastering. Ajay has done a good job composing something that is light to the ears, and at the same time, makes you tap your feet and nod your head to the beats. Ajay’s arrangements are also very typical, yet strike a chord with the listener. Guitars and tablas stand out like the heroes of the song. Mohit’s professionality really helps the song, which otherwise, might never have sounded so beautiful and catchy. His beautiful and smooth voice is what makes the listener get so enchanted by the song, which is nothing new or special. Mohit Pathak has written yet another typical Bollywood song, but yet again, it appeals to the ears solely because of the pleasant composition and arrangements. Yet again, simple and sweet arrangements and a strong, but heard-before composition fails to BORE! 😀 Something that appeals to the ears even though it is so plain and heard-before! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara
Singer ~ Nikhil D’Souza, Music by ~ Subhash Pradhan, Lyrics by ~ Pinky Pooniwala

The title song has been composed by Subhash Pradhan, and comes very unexpectedly after two beautiful romantic songs. This one, too, follows the same pattern as the previous two. It follows a template that has been done before, heard before, loved before, and yet, it impresses you with all its simplicity. Subhash has tried to make a very sweet-sounding, happy-go-lucky song, and succeeded. He makes sure that the listener will have a smile on his or her face after the song is over and also while it is playing. The best thing is that (and I’ve loved this thing in many recent songs) the hookline is so laid-back and humble, and that is what makes the song so special. You don’t even feel like the hookline just played, but it leaves an impact on you just as well. Arrangements are as breezy as the composition, with a strong countryside touch to them, with guitar riffs being the most prominent throughout the song. The harmonica has also been used very well, and so has the flute. Drums at certain places do accentuate the moment better. Nikhil with his husky voice, brings in the perfect feel of someone bored with his routine life and longing for a change, and Pinky Pooniwala beautifully explains that with the lyrics. The “hoo hoo hoo” by Nikhil is really commendable, and is very nicely and seamlessly done. A perfect song for a long drive, oozing of freshness and a pleasant breeze! An unexpected surprise from Subhash! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

4. Tere Ishq Ne Nachaaya
Singer ~ Pervez Quadir, Music by ~ Pervez Quadir, Lyrics by ~ Bulleh Shah

Pervez jumps into the album with the next song, which is the first song on the album that is actually upbeat and not calm. Pervez has taken Bulleh Shah’s poem and made a clubby number out of it. It still has that essence that it should have, but it sounds quite odd at places. Pervez has composed it well, keeping the essence of the poem in mind. It has been given a soft and soothing tune, something like a chant. It isn’t exactly what you would call catchy. The arrangements though, are a good mix of techno sounds, guitars and drums, which keeps you from getting bored. However, if the purpose was to keep you entertained, it doesn’t quite get fulfilled, as the lyrics and composition do not go well with those arrangements. Pervez’s voice too has been programmed weirdly, and it comes across as a mad mix of voices reciting a poem in a hodgepodge manner. Not an impressive fusion!!

 

5. Bhool Saari Baat
Singer ~ Ajay Singha, Music by ~ Ajay Singha, Lyrics by ~ Kumaar

Ajay re-enters into the album with this song, a quiet and soothing sad song. It has been composed on very minimal arrangements, and doesn’t fail to grab you into its web of enchanting music. The composition has been very carefully done, so as to make you love it to the fullest. Recently, ‘Kapoor & Sons’ had a similar sad song ‘Saathi Rey’, which had a just as pleasant and sweet and positive touch to it. Ajay has surprised me a lot with the composition, which is so simple, yet so complex. The way the composition travels from low notes to high, so very effortlessly, is just praiseworthy. The arrangements are nothing but some acoustic guitars, soft strings and fingersnaps as the rhythm. Shakers have been used well, too. Ajay has rendered the song with a calm presence, and a very controlled voice, though we can hear the autotune at places. And he sounds like Atif Aslam at places, when he goes on the loud high notes. Nevertheless, it is a great attempt from his side. And the highlight of this sweet little song are the very poetic lyrics by Kumaar. It is just so haunting to hear the lyrics along with the dulcet composition. They are very heart-touching, and Kumaar is an expert at such lyrics, as well as silly and insane ones! 😀 A masterpiece, that doesn’t try at all to be a masterpiece. Soft, soothing, and haunting without any haunting notes at all! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

6. Dil Ke Rahi
Singer ~ Raman Mahadevan, Music by ~ Ajay Singha, Lyrics by ~ Pinky Pooniwala

The last song on the album is quite similar to the title song, with a countryside flavor, something that sounds a lot like a travel song. The acoustic guitars make the song feel breezier than it should. The base composition is quite bland and not as appealing as the other songs. Ajay has tried to make a breezy and catchy composition, but nothing works out as planned. The hookline doesn’t grab your attention, nor does any other part of the composition. The arrangements are the saving grace, with a catchy guitar-drums combo that always works for such songs. Rock guitars, a wonderful sitar, and piano notes attract your attention on the way towards the end of the song, but there’s not much else to hear and you end up getting bored soon. Raman’s voice isn’t pitch perfect either, and that makes it worse. The slow pace of the composition doesn’t go well with the upbeat and breezy composition here, and though it tries to sound like an IndiPop song, it ends up sounding pretty stale. Pinky Pooniwala’s lyrics are good, though. Nothing new, but nothing bad, either. A song that is a disappointing end to an unexpectedly great album.


I wouldn’t even have reviewed Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara. I had never heard about the movie or anything about the songs. But when I heard it, I was pretty blown away with the dedication of the makers. Even though the movie might not have a big star cast to boast of, the makers have made sure that the music finds as many takers as possible. The songs are a fresh change from the usual albums to small films as these, and I was really surprised on hearing it. Refreshing!

 

Final Rating for This Album: सा < रे < ग < म < प <  < नी < सां

Note: The letter which is underlined is the final rating.

Recommended Listening Order: Meheram Mere > Bhool Saari Baat > Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara > Chu Liya > Dil Ke Rahi > Dil Ke Rahi

 

Which is your favourite song from Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

 

RAM SAMPATH 2.0!! (RAMAN RAGHAV 2.0 – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Ram Sampath
♪ Lyrics by: Varun Grover
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 3rd June 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 24th June 2016

Raman Raghav 2.0 Album Cover

Raman Raghav 2.0 Album Cover

 

To hear the full songs of this album on Saavn CLICK HERE

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Raman Raghav 2.0 is an upcoming Bollywood psychological thriller, starring Nawazuddin Siddiqui in the titular role of Raman Raghav (Psycho Raman), and Vicky Kaushal as a cop. The film has been directed by Anurag Kashyap, abd produced by him along with Vikas Bahl, Vikramaditya Motwane and Madhu Mantena. The movie is based on the life of the notorious serial killer, Raman Raghav (1929-1995) who operated in Mumbai during the late 60s. However, Kashyap says it is not a biopic and the character that Nawazuddin plays is merely inspired by the life of Raman Raghav. 🙂 All that being said, let’s veer over to the music department. The music has been given by Ram Sampath, who left us with a great soundtrack to ‘Bangistan’ last year and a below average single song in ‘Tere Bin Laden Dead Or Alive’ earlier this year. It isn’t his first time composing for a thriller — ‘Talaash’ was one of his bests — so I expect something great from him here as well. He has given us four songs, with one version = five tracks. I hope all five stand out as great ones individually! Let’s see how “deadly” an album Ram has offered!!


1. Qatl-e-Aam / Qatl-e-Aam (Unplugged)
Singers ~ Sona Mohapatra & Yash Divecha / Sona Mohapatra

A Ram Sampath album without his wife, Sona Mohapatra singing a song, is like the world without water. Indeed, Ram gives the very first song of the album to his wife, to sing with her amazingly addictive voice, that we mostly get to hear only in his albums, unfortunately. The song traverses the club genre, with foot-tapping EDM, dubstep and trance. Ram’s composition is very ghazal-like, and instantly strikes a chord with the everyday Bollywood listener as well as listeners who are up for something more unconventional. Ram has wonderfully blended the two genres together to produce a trippy song. The hookline is so addictive, you can’t get it our of your head once you hear it. Ram really knows how to gain the attention of his listeners. And he’s really good at it. The second antara takes an unexpected turn to the lower octave, and Sona singing in that low pitch just wins over your heart. Her high pitched portions are amazing as well! It’s a shame we don’t get to hear her more often! The composition, with three short antaras, doesn’t leave your attention wandering while it plays, and that’s the magic. Sona sings the song with a very sensuous tone, that really makes you fall in love with her voice yet again. Her co-singer, Yash Divecha, who has also done the additional arrangements, gets a very little part after the hookline, which is really cool, though. The way he sings that “Qatl-e qatl-e” is so dark, grungy and cool! A small part, but provijes the necessary darkness to the song. Varun Grover’s lyrics are great with very ghazal-like words, the essence of which can truly be enjoyed in the “unplugged” version of the song. In this version, Sona shines like never before. It reminds one of ‘Dil Aaj Kal (Unplugged)’ (Purani Jeans) which also had been sung by Sona. The guitars here are much better than the EDM in the original version (which were great, too!) The arrangements in this version suit the theme, lyrics and Sona’s voice way much more than those of the club version did! Guitars by Pawan Rasailly steal the limelight from Sona in this one, but Sona does her best nonetheless. Interludes are blissful, with the guitar showing off to the fullest. While the EDM/club freaks will enjoy the first version, the music lover will enjoy the second. The composition is beautiful, and so, for me, sounds beautiful in both versions!! Both versions are a #5StarHotelSong!!

 

2. Behooda
Singer ~ Nayantara Bhatkal, Backing Vocals ~ Ram Sampath, Vivienne Pocha & Nalini Krishnan

The next song on the album takes us back to Ram’s ‘Talaash’ days, the jazz, the sinister music and the unconventional female vocals, not sweet at all, but mischievous. Nayantara Bhatkal, who was all sugar in her last song ‘Main Jo’ (NH10), gets into the salt and pepper mode for this song, and gives a very impressive rendition, suitable for the 60s jazz theme that Ram has given to the song. The composition is really addictive, yet again, and something that will grow on you. The slow and sultry tune really works wonders for the song. The hookline is very catchy, with the line “Tu saccha behooda” or “Tu aisa behooda” repeating, and the singer singing various other lines in between the lines that repeat. I always love when that style is used in songs. It sounds so impressive. Backing vocalists are barely heard, because all the voices sounded quite the same to me! However, that repeating “ooh ooh ooh ohh ohho” is mindblowingly attractive! Ram wins with the arrangements, as well. Jazz guitars, strings make it a melodious listen, and drums provide an engaging beat to sway to. A sound like a xylophone impressed as well. Nayantara’s rendition, as I said before, is really impressive. It reminded me of Suman Shridhar’s rendition of ‘Muskaanein Jhoothi Hain’ from Ram’s album to ‘Talaash’. Varun Grover has written lyrics that suit the theme, with a girl describing Raman’s character in the wildest ways possible. It is fun to hear and entertaining as well as sinister at the same time! Ram takes jazz to a new level, with a sinister take on it. Nayantara’s husky voice helps the song to sound very addictive, and Grover writes clever lyrics! Ram teachers the right way to do a evil character-based theme song. Not like ‘Veerappan’! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Paani Ka Raasta
Singers ~ Siddharth Basrur & Ram Sampath

The next song is a calm, thoughtful number. A surprise in an album to the psychological thriller, this one has been soulfully composed by Ram and just as beautifully sung by Siddharth, accompanied by Ram. Ram’s composition is pleasant and soulful, but not appealing at all. It is slow, and slow doesn’t really strike a chord with the listeners always, unless arrangements help it there. The tune has a number of twists and turns, that are pretty hard to digest, and it gets boring after about half is over. The arrangements start off with acoustic guitar and slow strings for the first half, and slowly breaks into soft rock with electric guitar and drums, but again, it sounds so typical and heard-before, that it fails to make any impact. Siddharth sounds a lot like Benny Dayal with a more grungy side to his voice. I feel Benny with his soft and smooth voice would’ve done this song better than Siddharth. Not that Siddharth hasn’t done a bad job. Ram accompanies him very well. Varun writes perfect lyrics with a dominant touch of demotivation and melancholia. I really don’t have much more to write about this one. It is pleasant, but too heavy for the ears, somehow. 😦

 

4. Raghav Theme
(Instrumental)

The last song of the album is a theme song, with a pulsating electronic beat to it. Ram has come up with a gripping theme to the film, but the problem is that it is so passive and uneventful! Nothing big happens in it, and it just seems like the same techno beats are being repeated over and over again, and for five minutes! I think this might be used during some chase scene, or critical scene in the film, and the whole track is the BGM for that particular scene. That explains the length. The album could’ve done with just a glimpse of this, though. Two minutes would’ve been just fine. The only attraction besides the beats, is the barely audible sarangi in the background. It is too muffled, though. A gripping theme song, perfect for the screen, but not suitable as something to put in an album. A bit more variation was welcome… With this, I just felt like I played some video game!


Raman Raghav 2.0 doesnt quite meet up to my expectations. One of my expectations was met, though. That was the expectation that Ram would show us a different side of his music, and he did, with an impressive cocktail of slow, melodious and gripping, sinister songs. However, he didn’t quite impress as much as I wanted him to. The first two songs, and the unplugged version of ‘Qatl-e-Aam’ were impressive. The remaining two didn’t quite gain my attention. Nevertheless, infusing melody into an album which didn’t require music, let alone melody, was a very impressive and commendable job he did! Though Ram could’ve done better, he has definitely shown us a glimpse of Ram Sampath 2.0 with this album!!

 

Final Rating for This Album: सा < रे < ग < म <  < ध < नी < सां

Note: The letter which is underlined is the final rating.

Recommended Listening Order: Qatl-e-Aam (Unplugged) > Behooda > Qatl-e-Aam > Paani Ka Raasta > Raghav Theme

 

Which is your favourite song from Raman Raghav 2.0? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

 

THE SULTANATE OF VISHAL-SHEKHAR IS BACK TO REIGN!! (SULTAN – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Vishal-Shekhar
♪ Lyrics by: 
Irshad Kamil
♪ Music Label:
 YRF Music
Music Released On: 31st May 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 
8th July 2016

Sultan Album Cover

Sultan Album Cover

 

To hear the full songs of this album on Saavn CLICK HERE

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Sultan is an upcoming Bollywood sports drama film, starring Salman Khan and Anushka Sharma in the lead roles. The film has been directed by Ali Abbas Zafar, and produced by Aditya Chopra. The story revolves around a Haryanvi wrestler who goes by the name Sultan (Salman Khan), who has problems in his professional life. His struggle to get back into the wrestling scenario forms the story of ‘Sultan’. The story seems the usual Bollywood story for a sports film, but the execution is what matters. While we wait for the execution to come in front of our eyes, the music album is here for us to cherish. The album marks the comeback of duo Vishal-Shekhar, who disappeared after a mediocre album, ‘Happy New Year’ (2014). They gave that foot-tapping song in ‘Fan’, again for YRF earlier this year, again for a Khan, Shahrukh. This time they come back to compose for YRF’s ‘Sultan’, which is coincidentally their first Salman Khan film!! That’s kind of hard to believe isn’t it? Such a talented duo and composing for Salman for the first time! 😀 What was Salman doing all these years? Playing table tennis with Himesh and Sajid-Wajid? Apparently, he has moved on from his clichéd composers and after Pritam’s stylish and full-of-variety ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’, and Himesh’s old-fashioned, but enjoyable ‘Prem Ratan Dhan Payo’ last year, he comes back this year with a new choice of Vishal & Shekhar, who are geniuses when it comes to being innovative. Expectations are sky-high and there are so many reasons. a) Vishal-Shekhar’s comeback. b) Vishal-Shekhar’s first for Salman. c) Vishal-Shekhar composing for YRF.. (remember ‘Ta Ra Rum Pum’ and ‘Tashan’?) Something phenomenal indeed is expected. Something mind-blowing and something innovative — just because Vishal-Shekhar are on board. They have composed a big nine-track album, with seven songs, one version and one theme. Let’s see how many of them rise up like a real ‘Sultan’! Really hoping this comeback makes it really big (once again) for the duo after their rough patch recently, the last great album being ‘Hasee Toh Phasee’ (2014)! They must emerge as Sultans!


1. Baby Ko Bass Pasand Hai
Singers ~ Vishal Dadlani, Shalmali Kholgade & Isheeta Chakrvarty, Rap by ~ Badshah

The soundtrack opens up with a fun-filled dance number that has been composed by the duo to really suit Salman’s presence in it. The song starts off with a wonderful rhythm, that you can set your feete tapping to immediately, as soon as it starts. Composed of techno sounds, dhadd, and manjeeras,the rhythm really hooks you right away, and Isheeta’s folk portion doesn’t really help in making you run away from the song. In other words, the song starts off really catchily, just as it should!! Vishal-Shekhar have really moulded themselves into a complete folksy manner, and delivered a composition that would easily connect with the masses. It is very typical, very Salman types, yet it instantly catches onto you. The hookline, kind of composed on the base rhythm of ‘Selfie Le Le Re’ (Bajrangi Bhaijaan), impresses with its briskness. The techno noises after the short hookline are wonderful, and so is the playful flute! The mukhda by Vishal and Shalmali, really grabs your attention. Arrangements in the song are fabulous. The use of techno has been done really impressively. The brisk interventions of the flue are just lovely! They really stole my heart. Traditional instruments like harmonium, dholaks, manjeeras, tumbi, dhadd, impress as well in their small parts. Vishal-Shekhar really know how to fuse everything together into a catchy package. There is a rap by Badshah completely styled like an antara, as it is very cleverly joined with the hookline after it is over. Badshah’s rap is fun to hear, but I miss the very raw Haryanvi feel of Honey Singh’s Haryanvi rap here. Anyway, it is enjoyable. Shalmali sings in her soft voice, which I like better than her other, low-pitched voice. She does the Haryanvi accent very well. She too, has a small stanza to sing after a bit of Badshah’s rap, after which Vishal comes back for the hookline. For Vishal, I’ve no words to express how much I loved his rendition. He sings with the same infectious energy, that he puts into all his other songs, so it is not a surprise. The way he sings the hookline, though resembling his rendition of the hookline of ‘Selfie Le Le Re’, still sounds so mind blowing and cool. Irshad Kamil is back to his fun, enjoyable lyrics. He can easily mould himself to write so many different types of lyrics and they always appeal! He takes the hookline and writes such fun-plus-funny lyrics around it, a usual male v/s female battle as we have in Bollywood dance numbers many times. An infectious, catchy number, perfect as the first song in a Salman album. Vishal-Shekhar have composed a perfect song for Salman, right in their first stint for him! Energetic vocals, enjoyable lyrics, and booming arrangements all make this one a WINNER! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

2. Jag Ghoomeya / Jag Ghoomeya (Female)
Singers ~ Rahat Fateh Ali Khan / Neha Bhasin

A beautiful guitar loop starts off the next song, and you know Vishal-Shekhar are back at doing their thing with the soulful romantic songs. The song is a romantic song, with shades of Vishal-Shekhar’s style, yet suiting Salman’s style perfectly. The composition is a breezy, love ballad with a really happy-go-lucky touch to it, and graced with a beautiful folk rhythm. The mukhda is very charming, and the hookline really lives up to its name — it hooks you completely. The rhythm of the hookline is just too catchy to dislike. It is the antara though, where Vishal-Shekhar really work magic. It has been composed in a manner that reminds you of Vishal-Shekhar’s work in ‘Tashan’, for some reason unknown. Maybe the folksiness makes it connect to ‘Tashan’. The line “jaisi Tu hai vaisi rehnaa” is very pleasant, and my personal favourite from the song. It has some charm in it. The female version has the tempo cranked down a bit, and that appeals so, so much! The duo excels in the arrangements too, as always. In the male version, their brilliance in arranging music is seen in the way they add folk guitars, acoustic guitars and rock guitars into the same song. Percussion is brilliant, with a folksy but electronic dafli and dholak rhythm backing the song. Shakers have been used very cutely. The first interlude has a very majestic strings portion which reminds one of ‘Zehnaseeb’ (Hasee Toh Phasee). It has a strong hangover of that song. However, the mandolin is what steals the show. It is very cute and pleasant to the ears. In the female version, however, Vishal-Shekhar really impress. They have arranged it very beautiful with almost nothing but a folkish guitar in the background. Percussion is very beautiful, and very less and soft too. For me, this is the winner even though it offers less! To talk about vocals, Rahat’s soulful voice brings that rustic feeling to the song (and also brings the Salman-iyat 😛 ) and sounds very familiar, yet appeals. Again, it is the female version which emerges as the winner. Neha has tried something new this time, with an innocent romantic song. Her husky voice perfectly makes for the rustic setting of the movie. The accent is something to fall for! I couldn’t help but miss Harshdeep Kaur here, though! Not that Neha’s rendition is bad in any way!! 😀 Her voice simply reminded me of Harshdeep’s and then I started wanting to hear the song in her voice. 😛 Kamil’s lyrics are sweet, simple, innocent; in short, amazing. Amazing simplicity and innocence in this romantic song. Something worth hearing on loop! For me the female version is better, but both are a #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. 440 Volt
Singer ~ Mika Singh

I saw the title and singer’s name of the next song and told myself, “Finished. The goodness of this album is over. It’s all over, dude. You were an idiot to think that the album would be so great.” After all, I’ve not been liking Mika’s songs of late; the same, old, repetitive meaningless party tracks. But boy, was I wrong! The song is utterly enjoyable! Nothing less than that. Enjoyable to the fullest. Each and every second is something to cherish and enjoy. I don’t know what Vishal-Shekhar fed Mika before recording the song, but here he sounds very, very different! He doesn’t belch out his words like always, he doesn’t eat any of the syllables, and neither does he try to sound like a pop star. Instead, he pronounces everything perfectly, sings in a very soft textured voice, and tries to sound CUTE! And it works! He does sound cute. Don’t believe me? Hear it! The duo have given him a song quite unlike his style, yet perfect for him! It is a slow-paced, but very catchy and groovy song based on the filmi Qawwali template. It is one of the most entertaining Qawwali spoofs I’ve heard this year. And then there’s that ‘Fake Ishq’ (Housefull 3). [Okay, now ‘Housefull 3’ has really become an example, hasn’t it? Sorry! 😅😅 Couldn’t resist from writing that, though!] Vishal-Shekhar have composed something that is immensely attractive, something that doesn’t only have a catchy hookline to do all the work, but a hardworking (in getting us addicted!) mukhda and very diligently composed antaras. The antara is a very weirdly addictive, slow piece that you can’t get out of your head. The part in the hookline when Mika repeats “Chhoone Se Terey” is just so crazily gooooddd! (Can’t think of a synonym for ‘good’. That’s why I elongated it. No time! 😂 ) The way Mika sings in a Haryanvi accent fulfills my dream of hearing him sing that ever since he didn’t sing the title track of ‘Boss’. (Which I had thought he had sung when I first heard it). The duo’s arrangements are very creative. The rock factor works really well in filmy Qawwalis, so there it is. The harmonium and tablas are also awesome. A wonderful electronic substitute for the tabla has been added by the duo, which you can hear at 2:47 in the song. That space is usually taken by the tablas in any Qawwali. While he first interlude has a full-on rock guitar solo, the second goes the calm way with a Spanish sounding tune on strings and tablas. Irshad Kamil writes very entertaining lyrics, perfectly suitable for a lovestruck Romeo. The hookline is so funny, yet creative. “Lagey 440 Volt Chhoone Se terey”. Now don’t say I unnecessarily hate the lyrics of ‘Hous– oops! ENTERTAINING to the core!! Something very creative and innovative! P.S. Mika as a Qawwali singer sounds awesome! #5StarHotelSong!! (P.P.S. Sorry for the essay)

 

4. Sultan
Singers ~ Sukhwinder Singh & Shadab Faridi, Backing Vocals ~ Abdul Sajjad, Zuber Hashmi, Arun Ingle, R N Iyer, Mandar Aapte, Kaustubh Datar, Rahul Chitnis, Nitin Tupe, Swapnil Godbole, Mangesh Chavan, Nitin Karandikar, Vijay Dhuri, Jitendra Tupe, Mayuresh Madgaonkar

The title song, arrives quite late into the album, and starts off very softly. Later, a voice quite like that of Vishal Dadlani joins the rock guitars that start off the song, and sing some motivational lines. We’re kind of figuring out what’s going on, when suddenly, an electrifying Sukhwinder Singh takes things into his hands and with him, the song goes uphill, and how! An energizing electric guitar hook starts playing, to be joined later on by energetic drums and a wonderful chorus. The composition is also just ad energetic, and definitely motivational. The duo redo their own ‘Tashan Mein’ (Tashan), but in a very different manner. A way better version of the seemingly unbeatable song, in terms of dynamism and vigour. The hookline is very unconventional as it ends abruptly with the chorus singing “Rre sultan”. The khoon and mitti refrain is very catchy, and suits the theme, doesn’t it? All the parts of the song are energetic, and full of the spirit to work and win. The rock arrangements are not over the top, and because of the commercial nature of the rock song, it will appeal to all, unlike other rock songs which aren’t so commercial. You can barely hear anything besides the rock guitars and drums, which I must say, are very classily done. There are some parts in the antara when the rock simmers down, but other than that, rock is everywhere. Sukhwinder and Shadab are a fit duo to sing the song, with Shadab getting very less in comparison to Sukhwinder. Sukhwinder is clearly the king of all this. A wonderful techno-sargam entertains highly in the first interlude. Irshad Kamil’s lyrics are highly motivational and more than a character-themed title song, like Salman’s other title songs where the leading hero is a larger-than-life supercop (Ahem, ‘Dabangg’!), the song sounds like a pure motivational and inspirational song. The energy of Sukhwinder and Shadab combined with the energy of Vishal-Shekhar’s guitars and drums, and the intelligence of Kamil’s pen, makes for an enjoyable and worthy listen! One of Salman’s best title songs!! He’ll be like “Achho title song paayo .. Paayo… Aayo.. Laayo… Gaayo.. Bio —” Where’d that come from? 😕 #5StarHotelSong!!

 

5. Sachi Muchi
Singers ~ Mohit Chauhan & Harshdeep Kaur, Backing Vocals ~ Marianne D’Cruz, Nisha Mascarenhas, Rajiv Sundaresan & Neuman Pinto

Now, the next song is really beautiful. Vishal-Shekhar create a very happy-go-lucky romantic song, very unconventional. The song starts with a wedding baaja type band, playing the tune of the hookline, which sounds really out-of-place, and confusing. However, things clear themselves up when the song starts after the band moves on. A wonderful banjo + harmonica instrumentation sets things into place, and creates a very American folk ambience. (You know, cowboys. 😛 ) Without thinking about what cowboys are doing in Haryana, I start grooving to the feel-good, breezy music. However, it took me very long to really start grooving a lot to the music. The song grows on you as slow as a snail. But when it finishes growing upto however much it wants to grow, it sounds very good to the ears. The same thing happened to me. The composition, though a little weak, sets in after a few listens and seems to very attractive. The Western breeze in the arrangements is something not heard recently in Bollywood. (I don’t really like it when it comes in Bollywood music, though. Sounds boring, generally, too!) Mohit and Harshdeep sing the composition perfectly, with the right amount of gusto. Especially in the hookline, “yeh khwaab hai, chaahatein…. Tere kehne Se li Maine parvaazein”, Mohit along with the backing chorus sings very awesome. The harmonica and banjo sound mind-blowing. The lighthearted composition works really well after some time, just that it takes some time to mark its place in the otherwise commercial album. Irshad’s lyrics are just as lighthearted as needed. This time, a two-sided love song. 😀 A song with less appeal, but will slowly emerge as an undoubted #5StarHotelSong!!

 

6. Bulleya
Singer ~ Papon, Backing Vocals ~ Altamash Faridi & Shadab Faridi

While Mika sang a filmy Qawwali earlier in the album, Papon is here with a full-fledged traditional Qawwali of his own. Vishal-Shekhar have composed a totally sweet, innocent composition for this Qawwali, fit for mehfils. Papon starts off with a very lovely AdLib, after which Vishal-Shekhar kick in with the beautiful Qawwali rhythm, complete with the Faridi brothers singing in a heavenly manner, and a harmonium striking the chords of our hearts. Papon rejoins with very sugary lines written wonderfully by Kamil. He renders them very beautifully, and those waah’s cant stop from escaping from your mouth. The way the duo connects this part to the hookline, is when you really get transported to another world. And the hookline is what keeps you there. And you stay there for the remaining duration of the song. A beautiful entrancing arrangement of dholaks, tablas, dafli, harmonium and chimtas, complements Papon during his heavenly rendition. The foot-tapping rhythm is what makes the song sound so beautiful. The rhythm in the hookline is indescribable. It is also the composition that has brought out the bliss in Papon’s voice. Vishal-Shekhar’s divine and spiritual composition is what makes you love everything about the song. The interlude has a wonderful rock guitar portion, which doesn’t sound out-of-place in the spiritual song at all. The Faridi bros are excellent in their spiritual interventions in the song. Lastly, Irshad is a genius. He has written such impressive romantic, spiritual and sad lyrics, which are excellent. It is like a request from the boy to his lover, instead of the usual sad romantic songs where the boy assumes that the girl is leaving him and starts wailing. 😂 The way the spiritual touch has been put into the lyrics, is wondrous. Divine, spiritual and blessed. Something to hear on loop! Perfect ‘Coke Studio’ material from Vishal-Shekhar! Papon, you are a rockstar!!! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

7. Tuk Tuk
Singers ~ Nooran Sisters & Vishal Dadlani

This song starts with a weird AdLib like one in a Qawwali. I am guessing that has been sung by Shekhar. Anyway, the AdLib makes way for some entrancing, divine techno music. It is so beautiful, that you can’t stop from swaying. Piano, chimes and techno sounds have been wonderfully fused together to make something really addictive and entrancing. The Nooran Sisters start off with their usual folksy Punjabi rendition, which starts off really promising. And then, it drops down so fast. The hookline arrives so fast, you are not sure what actually happened. Suddenly, the techno trance breaks and you find yourself in a very typical Punjabi tumbi-dhol arrangement (with very low volume, like Amit Trivedi’s style) with a very averagely composed hookline. It takes quite some time for the song to pick up pace again, and that is when Vishal comes in with his out-of-this-world rap! His rap is actually meaningful. The song is another meaningful, inspirational one, which completely grips you until the part I mentioned arrives. After Vishal’s raps though, the Punjabi part sounds perfectly fine and acceptable. It is the “re bole dhola dhol tadak dhin” line that plays the spoilsport in the song. It just sounds out-of-place here. Everything else falls into place perfectly. Even the antara, which has a Punjabi folk arrangement, sounds great. So why does that hookline sound odd? The flaw is in the abrupt composition. The EDM and techno music is really addictive, and the programming on the Noorans’ voices is very cool. The fusion is really something to appreciate, and something other composers must follow soon!! Irshad’s lyrics are very inspirational, and the metaphors are very clever. Something that would have been exceptionally innovative, but spoiled by the hookline!!

 

8. Rise of Sultan
Singer ~ Shekhar Ravjiani, Backing Vocals ~ Abdul Sajjad, Zuber Hashmi, Arun Ingle, R N Iyer, Mandar Aapte, Kaustubh Datar, Rahul Chitnis, Nitin Tupe, Swapnil Godbole, Mangesh Chavan, Nitin Karandikar, Vijay Dhuri, Jitendra Tupe, Mayuresh Madgaonkar

To close this very much awaited album, we have something on the lines of a theme song. Again motivational in spirit, this track takes the khoon-mitti refrain of the title song and has it crafted into a wonderful background piece. The composition as we know it, it purely motivational and so it has a very positive effect in this track. It makes the song sound so otherworldly. Shekhar leads the vocals with a horde of backing vocalists following him, without which it would’ve sounded lifeless. What I really want to praise is the MINDBLOWING percussion. They are so energetic and vigorous, you can’t help but love them. The rock guitars do not leave this opportunity of showing their prowess either, and impress yet again, along with their new companion, the percussion. The song suits the storyline of the film, as it starts slow and gets high-spirited towards the end, with the strings and brass kicking in later on. It is symbolic of the “Rise” of the character, Sultan. A perfect title, I must say! An INVIGORATING end to the impressive album! #5StarHotelSong!!


Sultan turns out to be way better than expected. Yes, I know my expectations were huge anyway, but not so high! I had never expected such a great album, especially when there is Salman’s commercialism to cater to. But Vishal-Shekhar really prove themselves. They are experts in music arrangements, and they use this plus point to raise the level of each and every song in the album. If there is a typical Salman dance number in ‘Baby Ko Bass Pasand Hai’, there is also a spiritual Qawwali in ‘Bulleya’ and an enjoyable track in ‘440 Volt’. An album full of variety, and I’m thinking, one of Salman’s best albums since 2010. Ali Abbas Zafar has brought out the best from the duo, considering the movie’s genre. If Vishal-Shekhar can deliver so well in a film that doesn’t need such good music, I can’t even imagine what they will do in films like ‘Banjo’ and ‘Befikre’ coming later this year! 😉 The sultans of Bollywood are back to reign!!

 

Final Rating for This Album: सा < रे < ग < म < प < ध < नी < सां

Note: The letter which is underlined is the final rating.

Recommended Listening Order: Bulleya > Jag Ghoomeya (Female) > 440 Volt > Sultan > Jag Ghoomeya > Rise of Sultan > Baby Ko Bass Pasand Hai > Sachi Muchi > Tuk Tuk

 

Which is your favourite song from Sultan? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

 

Note: ‘Sultan’ will be included in July 2016 monthly awards 🙂

Next “dish”: Raman Raghav 2.0, Chef: Ram Sampath