SHREYA + SUNIDHI = SHABANA!! (NAAM SHABANA – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Rochak Kohli, Meet Bros. & Bappi Lahiri
♪ Lyrics by: Manoj Muntashir, Kumaar & Anjaan
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 9th March 2017
♪ Movie Releases On: 31st March 2017

Naam Shabana Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


P.S. The song ‘Dil Hua Besharam’ can be heard on Saavn, while its reprise ‘Baby Besharam’ can be heard on the YouTube audio jukebox. The Saavn link doesn’t have the latter whereas the YouTube jukebox doesn’t have the former. Thought it necessary to inform in case you get confused! 😀


Naam Shabana is a Bollywood thriller, starring Taapsee Pannu in the titular role, and Manoj Bajpayee, Prithviraj Sukumaran, Elli Avram and Taher Shabbir in supporting roles. The film has been directed by Shivam Nair, whose ‘Bhaag Johnny’ flopped in 2015. The film has been produced by Neeraj Pandey and Shital Bhatia. It is a spin-off to the 2015 super-hit film ‘Baby’, and shows the journey of Taapsee Pannu’s character Shabana from ‘Baby’, before she was roped in to be a part of the mission. The movie is definitely awaited, because of it being the first of its kind; Bollywood has been free of any spin-offs as such, and it is just wonderful that the first Bollywood spin-off is that of such a wonderful thriller. Anyway, let’s go over to the music, because we have a little more time to wait for the movie. We all remember that ‘Baby’ had been touted to be a songless film. Nevertheless, three songs had been included in its album — technically two, because one of the songs had a male and female version. Meet Bros. Anjjan had composed one promotional track, while M.M. Kreem, had composed the two-version track in question. The soundtrack was like an accessory to the film, and not something to cherish in your playlist for a long, long time. This movie seems to be different, in that it has four original tracks, with one having two versions, thus making it five songs. Rochak Kohli, who of late, just composed single additional songs that released after the albums of ‘M.S. Dhoni – The Untold Story’ and ‘Wazir’ released, comes back with a substantial chunk of an album after a long time. He last composed three songs out of the five-track ‘Welcome 2 Karachi’ (which were quite ignorable) and before that, three out of ten in ‘Hawaizaada’ (which I still listen to!) So I am not quite sure what he can give in this album, where he has three out of five songs. The other two songs are two versions of the same song, composed by Meet Bros, without Anjjan. Hopefully, they don’t give something too-hard-to-grasp like ‘Baby’s ‘Beparwah’. So let’s see what kind of music this album to a much-awaited thriller, holds in hand!


1. Rozana

Singer ~ Shreya Ghoshal, Music by ~ Rochak Kohli, Lyrics by ~ Manoj Muntashir

“Inn aankhon se yeh bataa, kitna main dekhun tujhe,
Reh jaati hai kuchh kami, jitna bhi dekhun tujhe,
Rozana main, sochun yahi,
Ki jee loongi main besaans bhi,
Aise hi tu mujhe, milta rahe agar, rozana, rozana!”

– Manoj Muntashir

Rochak decided to start the album off with a mellow, soothing song that would be enough to transport us to dreamland. The first song in the album is a romantic song that has a very beautiful composition; Rochak gets everything right in that he composes this one with the perfect Bollywood ideals of ‘romance’. Each and every note hits your heart and hits hard. The mukhda gives a nice headstart to the song, and the hookline is one which doesn’t care much about imposing itself on you but grows on you like slow poison just as I like it. The antaras hold all the magic of the song; the very powerfully lilting tune of the antaras just leaves you spellbound. The arrangements are quite minimal, but Rochak gives an impressive strings backdrop for most of the song, especially the strings in the interlude are very impressive. Guitars and piano soothe your senses like nothing else can. And also, Rochak has employed a kind of Marching rhythm to the antara. I don’t know why that’s there, but it doesn’t hamper the song in any way. The arrangements provide for a nice nighttime lullabyish listen. And the vocals are by none other than the melody queen, Shreya Ghoshal. She handles each word with utmost care, and the whispery way in which she sings the song proves yet again how wonderful she is as a singer. Unnecessary bouts of loudness can never be found when she is behind the mic. The lyrics by Manoj Muntashir are mind blowing, especially the paragraph I’ve showcased above! A MINDBLOWING start to the album, and it will definitely consolidate Rochak’s career in Bollywood.

Rating: 5/5

 

2. Zinda

Singer ~ Sunidhi Chauhan, Music by ~ Rochak Kohli, Lyrics by ~ Manoj Muntashir

“Ziddi raaston se paanv yeh, aaj bhi, jhagadna toh bhoole nahin,
Haare hain kayi dafa toh kya, aaj bhi, hum ladna toh bhoole nahin,
Aaj bhi dil baaghi hai, bas yehi kaafi hai,
Zinda hoon abhi, baaki hoon abhi,
Meri har saans mein thodi si zindagi hai abhi!”

– Manoj Muntashir

After the lulling romantic song, Rochak throws in a motivational kind of song next. This time, the composition is a bit weak. It sounds great in the first listen, but later on I found that it is quite typical and offers nothing new. The mukhda starts off the song on a slow pace, which only speeds up when the hookline arrives: the only portion of the song that remains with you after the song ends. Wonderfully composed on pensive sounding high notes, that part will definitely hook you on to the song and assure that you don’t leave it halfway. The antara that follows is also quite sombre, and doesn’t leave an impact on you, unless you hear it many times. On a whole, the song’s tune has nothing much to lap up. The arrangements also fail to offer anything different or innovative. The tune is already so laidback, but the arrangements refuse to make it more interesting, staying very minimal until, again, the hookline comes. Strings and guitars can be heard, but nothing stands out very boldly. Sunidhi Chauhan provides to the song, everything that the tune and arrangements could not. Her energy, though diffused in the song, manages to make the song repeat-listenable, even if only once or twice. Lately, she seems to have gotten stereotyped to these kind of songs. The lyrics by Muntashir, too, are good in their purpose of being motivational. A motivational song that fails to motivate a lot, but is functional to an extent. 

Rating: 3.5/5

 

3. Zubi Zubi

Singers ~ Sukriti Kakar & Rochak Kohli, Original Composition by ~ Bappi Lahiri, Music Recreated by ~ Rochak Kohli, Original Lyrics by ~ Anjaan, New Lyrics by ~ Manoj Muntashir

“Mere dil, gaaye jaa, zoo zoo zoobi zoobi zoobi,
Masti mein gaaye jaa, zoo zoo zoobi zoobi zoobi!”

– Anjaan

Next up we have Rochak’s final song for the album, and it happens to be an upbeat club number. This one is a remake, of Bappi Lahiri-composed ‘Zooby Zooby’ (Dance Dance), and it is quite a decent remake too, at that. The composition, though faltering at the beginning, turns out to be quite catchy. The mukhda is what I have a problem with — it seems forced and a bit childish. But right from the first time the hookline is sung, till the end of the song, it is an enjoyable track! The great thing is that, like it used to happen before, only the hookline of the original song has been taken, while the rest has been composed afresh. The antara is a nice continuation of the sensuous dance song, but then that line from the mukhda, “humko hai jaan se bhi pyaari aashiqmizajiyaan“, comes back to irritate. The arrangements are fantastic discoesque arrangements, recreating the Bappi Lahiri era in today’s style. Rochak has added groovy beats, and that amazing programming effect he has added to his own voice when he sings the hookline, keeps me waiting for his parts to come! It makes him sound like an awesome robot. 😀 Sukriti also, has sung well, except the mukhda. (Again!) She sounded a lot like a fake Shefali Alvares there, and I found it quite irritating, as I would have if Shefali herself had sung it. The rest of the song, she shines. Kumaar reworks around Anjaan’s original hookline, and pens down aptly enjoyable lyrics. A good remake, spoiled by a mediocre first stanza.

Rating: 3.5/5

 

4. Baby Besharam / Dil Hua Besharam

Singers ~ Jasmine Sandlas & Meet Bros / Aditi Singh Sharma & Meet Bros, Music by ~ Meet Bros, Lyrics by ~ Kumaar

(Nothing to showcase, thanks to Kumaar’s lyrical masterpieces which you’ll read of later on in the passage)

The next song is yet another club song, this one by Meet Bros. The composition sticks quite close to Bollywood’s conventions of composing a ‘catchy’ club song. Right from the beginning Meet Bros “try” to get us caught on to the composition, which, unfortunately, is very staid. The mukhda is bad, and the hookline follows suit. The antara doesn’t provide much respite in this respect either. The arrangements are typical club beats, and it sounds like it should’ve released a year or two ago. Meet Bros have added this weird synthesiser tune, which sounds like the song is part of a comedy movie, an adult comedy to be precise. I wonder if this song was actually composed for some other movie before, and then moved over to ‘Naam Shabana’ Because it couldn’t find a place anywhere else. The vocals are what differentiate one version of the song from the other. It actually had released first in Jasmine’s voice, and that one is outright banal, sounding like it is trying to imitate ‘Yaar Na Miley’ (Kick). Aditi Singh Sharma, though not eligible to win a Best Singer prize or anything for her rendition, provides respite MERELY IN COMPARISON TO Jasmine Sandlas. At least her voice is more club-environment-friendly. Yes, she does spoil some lines with her unnecessarily stylish accent. Oh yeah, and she knows how to pronounce the “Baby” as “Bebe” (which you need to practise if you ever want to make it big in Bollywood as a club singer!), as opposed to Jasmine singing “Baby” as “Bebi”. The way they sing “beyyyyyysharam” is quite torturous. I guess it was first going to be included in ‘Besharam’ as the title track (that would explain the comedic arrangements), until Ishq Bector & Shree D saved us by stepping in. Kumaar’s lyrics feature lyrical masterpieces like “Rafaa dafaa sufi bandon ko karke nasha vasha karlo“, and “Thoda sa bigadne mein bolo na kya harz hai?“. *Slow claps*

Rating: 1/5 for Baby Besharam, 1.5/5 for Dil Hua Besharam


Naam Shabana is a decent album, but not great. Its predecessor had two songs, so it was okay that only one worked. This has four songs, out of which only one works perfectly, the others are decent, and one is bad. For a thriller, the album is apt, with a romantic song, a motivational song, and two situational club songs. However, it will have less of a connect with the audiences. Rochak has done a commendable job though! The only good thing I might remember about this album years later is that it has both Shreya and Sunidhi, modern stalwarts of the Bollywood music industry, lending their voices to the songs.

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 5 + 3.5 + 3.5 + 1 + 1.5 = 14.5

Album Percentage: 58%

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: Rozana > Zubi Zubi = Zinda > Dil Hua Besharam > Baby Besharam

 

Remake Counter:
No. Of Remakes: 08 (from previous albums) + 01 (from Naam Shabana) = 09

 

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

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