NOT JUST ‘OK’, BUT FANTASTIC! (OK JAANU – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: A.R. Rahman, Tanishk Bagchi & Badshah
♪ Lyrics by: Gulzar, Hard Kaur, Navneet Virk, Aaryan Dinesh Kanagaratnam, Kaly, Mehboob & Badshah
♪ Music Label: Sony Music
♪ Music Released On: 4th January 2017
♪ Movie Releases On: 13th January 2017

Ok Jaanu Album Cover

Ok Jaanu Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Ok Jaanu is an upcoming Bollywood rom-com / drama, starring Shraddha Kapoor, Aditya Roy Kapur, Naseeruddin Shah and Leela Samson. The movie has been directed by Shaad Ali, and produced by Mani Ratnam, Karan Johar, Apoorva Mehta and Hiroo Yash Johar. The movie is a remake of Tamil film ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’ directed by Mani Ratnam, and like ‘Saathiya’ (which was a remake of Ratnam’s ‘Alaipayuthey’) Shaad Ali has taken it upon himself to successfully tell the story to the Hindi audience. The music of the film has been composed by A.R. Rahman, and it is primarily a dubed version of the ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’ soundtrack minus a few tracks and plus some new songs to fill in their places. Young talent Tanishk Bagchi, along with Badshah, has recreated one of Rahman’s own 90s hits, ‘Hamma Hamma’ (Bombay) for the film. Skeptical as I am about this, I really hope that the makers have made a good decision about that. Rahman last composed ‘Mohenjo Daro’s Album, which, as good as it was, was a bit underwhelming. Also, the last time he could oosed for a rom-com like this in Bollywood was ‘Tamasha’ and before that ‘Lekar Hum Deewana Dil’, both of which were awesome. I have heard the Tamil album when it released in 2015 itself, and it was good, but I didn’t really hear it much afterwards, because of the language. I just hope the dubbing has been done good!! Rahman has used 5 tracks from that album, and composed two new songs, and then Tanishk-Badshah’s one song, make this album an eight-song album! Just right!

{The names of the original Tamil songs from the Tamil album have been written below the respective song’s name}


1. OK Jaanu

(‘Mental Manadhil’ from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’)

Singers ~ A.R. Rahman & Srinidhi Venkatesh, Music by ~ A.R. Rahman, Lyrics by ~ Gulzar

“Dheere dheere zara dum le naa,
Pyaar se jo mile gham le naa,
Dil pe zara woh kam le naa,
Ok jaanu, tu dhin dhin na! Hey!”

– Gulzar

One of my favourites from the Tamil album, ‘Mental Manadhil’ gets redone as the title track of this movie, and I cant tell you how happy that made me! 😀 The song is a wonderful mocktail of techno sounds from Rahman, something that will drive you crazy, in a positive way. The composition is something that instantly grabs you and needs no time to invade your mind. It starts off with a nice ‘Jaanuuuu’ (and I know that sounds a bit cheap compared to the awesome ‘Lailaaaa’ from the Tamil song) and then transcends into an entrancing, but catchy tune that gets you grooving right away. The tune has been tweaked a bit from the original Tamil tune, which had this jumpy feel to it, especially in the “Mana mana mana” parts, which have been strung together to make a continuous tune in this version. However, after a couple of listens, this starts incorporating itself in your brain. (Read: my brain, and others who care about listening to music that isn’t in either their mother tongue, their national language or English) So I’m probably one in a ten-thousand people in North India who have heard the Tamil album. Yay me. Anyway. The antara is as catchy as the song is, and acts as a nice filler. Most of the song is composed on the same lines that constitute the mukhda, and I don’t know how many times the hook repeats. But it never gets boring! The arrangements are what make it more interesting than anything else does. That techno backdrop really makes the song sound pacy and makes it an apt song for a ‘carefree-and-youthful-couple-roaming-the-streets-of-Mumbai-on-a-motorbike-as-if-there’s-no-tomorrow’ situation. The interesting sounds that Rahman throws at you over the three-and-a-half-minute time span of the song, is enough to make you trip over the song. Especially that loop at the beginning!! The beats are so trippy, that it’s hard to explain in words. What does play a bit of a spoilsport in the song, are two things. First of all, Rahman’s vocals. I know they have a different kind of twang to them, and nobody else could have sung it like that, but some of the words have been mailed by his diction. (“Badi na tu kisi se” sounds like “Baaadiii na tuksi se”!) Srinidhi replaces Jonita from the original, to no actual effect — Jonita sounded much (!!!) better. (Which reminds me, there’s no female version!! The female version of ‘Mental Manadhil’ was awesome!!! Jonita’s nuances were to die for!) Also, Srinidhi has only one line that comes like two times in the whole song. The second spoilsport is (surprisingly!) Gulzar’s lyrics. The words in the antara (‘aayu-vaayu’, ‘mangal-dangal’) have merely been penned down to make them rhyme. And who addresses their friend as ‘kanya’? The lyrics were a big letdown, especially after Gulzar wrote the spectacular lyrics to ‘Mirzya’! I would’ve thought he would dub better! Nevertheless, a major portion of this song is awesome, as the tune and music is what matters the most. Some damage done by the lyrics can be overlooked by listeners.

Rating: 4/5

 

2. Enna Sona

(Newly composed song, replacement for ‘Aye Sinamika’ from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’)

Singer ~ Arijit Singh, Music by ~ A.R. Rahman, Lyrics by ~ Gulzar

“Kol hove te sekh lagda ae,
Door jaave te dil jalda ae,
Kedi agg naal, rab ne banaaya,
Rab ne banaaya, rab ne banaaya!
Enna sona kyun rab ne banaaya?”

– Gulzar

Next up, we get a fresh song, by which I mean that it isn’t a song from the Tamil album. And I must say, how thankful I am that ‘Aye Sinamika’ was dropped! 😛 I say this because what Rahman has produced in the bargain proves to be a spectacularly dulcet romantic ballad, that you just start loving instantly. Though I didn’t at first. Here’s my journey to liking this song: After 1st listen, “This is by A.R. Rahman?? Are you sure it isn’t Pritam..? I mean, there’s guitars, there’s Arijit…”. After close speculation in the second listen, “No. That flute in the first interlude is signature Rahman.. so it has to be Rahman. But what has he composed? A Pritam song!”. After 3rd listen, “Rahman!! Aaye ho kis bagiya se… Tummmm! 😍😍😍” And then I fell in love with the song. What can be better than a Punjabi love song, composed by Rahman and written by Gulzar? The composition is a verrrryy down-to-earth composition; so much so that the majority of its duration is taken up by that hookline that keeps on repeating, but never sounds repetitive! The antara with it’s inexplicably beautiful high notes just steals your heart away. (You’ll get it back he next time a beautiful Arijit song comes out. Don’t register any F.I.R. or anything and land yourself into trouble.) That leads us to the vocals. Arijit’s soothing voice is an excellent proof that he really is the only one out there these days who has the power to sing any type of song, but especially rocks it in the romantic song genre every single time. The arrangements are divinely soulful. PMK Naveen Kumar with his flute, impressed like always, and Keba Jeremiah on the guitars is exceptional. The flute and guitar in the first and second interludes respectively sound utterly charismatic! When the flute plays the hookline’s tune behind Arijit’s voice, a smile mischievously appeared on my face. (It was no use telling it to go away or grounding it.) Gulzar’s lyrics here, were a good exchange for the losses incurred in the first song, because they’re double beautiful. Though there are (and I counted) only 14 lines in the song, (Hey! It’s a sonnet!) each line has its own beauty. “Taap lagge na tatti Chandni da, saari ratti main os chhidkavan, kinne dardaan naal rabb ne banaaya” is the entire second antara, and the first is up there… Both are so marvellous! Enna Sona (gaana) kyun Rahman ne banaaya?

Rating: 5/5

 

3. Jee Lein

(‘Theera Ulaa’ from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’)

Singers ~ Arjun Chandy, Neeti Mohan & Savithri R. Prithvi, Music by ~ A.R. Rahman, Lyrics by ~ Gulzar

“Bichhad bhi gaye, toh bhi kya hai,
Tera dard toh saath hoga,
Gar aa gaye aansu, toh kya, mera chehra
Toh yaad hoga, toh yaad hoga…”

– Gulzar

Now this is another song that has been dubbed from its Tamil counterpart, from the original Tamil album. And I must say, it has been remade quite well! Let me remind you that the man behind this is A.R. Rahman, and so a Kollywood to Bollywood transition isn’t going to be as straightforward as it seems! And sure enough, the man has introduced some significant changes in the song, which we’ll come to later on. Firstly, the composition. The composition is a dreamy, anthem-like tune for the most part, until a nice and soothing interjection in the form of a female portion comes (Which is that significant change I was talking about, because it was a Carnatic piece in the Tamil song) and brings the melancholia into the song. Upbeat for the most part as the rest of the song is, this part very wonderfully and seamlessly brings a nice and emotional touch to the song — something Rahman is an expert at. The rest of the song is mostly the same time repeating again and again, but it doesn’t sound boring (except a bit when you hear it for the first time). It all has a very harmonic sound to it. The arrangements just elevate this entrancing feeling. Nice beats go with the chorus part, making the song upbeat in the right concentration. The occasional veena strums really reach out to your heart. (Which has been stolen by ‘Enna Sona’, don’t forget!) The melodious female portion in the middle has the upbeat beat toned a bit down, but the tune of that part definitely overrides the beats. And the seamless transition from that part, back to the chorus part, is awesome! Vocals are amazing, and I would like to have a list of everyone who was on the chorus! Arjun Chandy is clearly on there, and I can hear Neeti’s feathery voice, I the background. But Neeti has the aforementioned female portion to her credit, which is definitely the best part of the song, and she has rendered with her magic touch. Gulzar’s lyrics are wonderful. Especially in the same female portion that’s definitely going to be on my tongue and in my mind for a long time! Different and lovable, but might take some time to grow on you!

Rating: 4.5/5

 

4. Kaara Fankaara

(‘Kaara Attakkaara’ from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’)

Singers ~ Paroma Das Gupta, Shashaa Tirupati, Hard Kaur, Aaryan Dinesh Kanagaratnam, Kaly & Ashima Mahajan, Music by ~ A.R. Rahman, Lyrics by ~ Hard Kaur, Navneet Virk, Aaryan Dinesh Kanagaratnam & Kaly

“Kaara fankaara kab aaye re, kaara fankaara tarsaaye re” 🙉

– Whichever one of them wrote it

In a film targeted towards the youth, how can there not be a youthful number? The next song is just that. The song is a mishmash of sounds that are supposed to attract the youth. And it succeeds to quite an extent. The main composition is only during the hookline, the title of the song. I’m not sure if it even means anything, but the tune is likable. The composer has tried his best to make the song sound like many of his earlier such songs, and it does, but you can’t help but lose the link somewhere in the middle. The rap is amazingly rapid-going, and better than Badshah and Raftaar for sure, but I’m not sure the public is going to lap this rap up like they do for Raftaar and Badshah! Nevertheless, Kaly (How do I know it’s him? He says it in the song.. see if you can find it!) delivers it perfectly, so that it sounds rad. The ‘nama nama nama neiiii’ gets a bit repetitive after some time, and the song is almost 6 minutes long, so keep your seatbelts on! The vocals by so many people make it sound like a very hastily put-together song trying to sound unconventional. And unconventional it sounds, but doesn’t work! Hard Kaur, after a long time in some big Bollywood song, gets drowned amidst Shashaa’s ‘kaara fankaara kab aaye re, kaara fankaara tarsaaye re’ and Kaly’s English rap. Also, she isn’t recognizable thanks to programming. One thing I really loved is hat quirky nadaswaram like thing that plays when Kaly raps, somewhere in the initial two minutes of the song. The digital beats are commendable, but not commercially viable, especially not in Bollywood. The lyrics to the rap are good, but the hookline makes no sense. It is also the only song (except ‘The Humma Song’), that hasn’t been written by Gulzar. A good attempt at making a youthful rap number, but I wouldn’t recommend this, as it is quite heavy to the ears.

Rating: 3/5

 

5. Saajan Aayo Re

(‘Naane Varugiraen’ from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’)

Singers ~ Jonita Gandhi & Nakash Aziz, Music by ~ A.R. Rahman, Lyrics by ~ Gulzar

“Saajan aayo re, saavan laayo re,
Main poori bheegi re, Mann behkaayo re”

– Gulzar

Now comes the Rahman I was waiting for! Also, the song I was waiting for. My favourite song from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’, ‘Naane Varugiraen’ gets remade in Hindi as ‘Saajan Aayo Re’, and rendered by one of the most promising female singers of this generation, Jonita Gandhi. Of course, Shashaa sung this song in Tamil, and did a great job too. But with Rahman, it can never be anything simple… He has to put in challenges here and there, and so he ropes in Jonita, though Shashaa could’ve very well done it too! Anyway, more on the vocals later! The composition starts off with a wonderful free-flowing introductory stanza, which reminds me of Kathak songs like ‘Pyaar Kiya Toh Darna Kya’ (Mughal-e-Azam). The wonderful classical tune is just so bewitching! And what follows, is a classic example of why Rahman is such a master at classical songs. The nuances in the composition, especially at the word “saajan” are top-class! And the tune that follows is definitely one of the most beautifully haunting tunes I’ve heard since a long time. The interruptions by Nakash have been composed beautifully, too. The arrangements are heaven on earth. When the harp plays, when Jonita first starts the hookline, you get goosebumps, that might just stay till the whole song is over. And that wonderful percussion that follows…! The strings are exceptional, and techno music plays a big role in making the song sound unconventional for a classical melody. The vocals by Jonita surely make up her most wholesome perfromance out of all. Last year, Pritam gave her many songs, but this is not even similar to any of those. Jonita, for the first time, has taken up a classical song to sing, and she aces it with perfection! The way she sings the “Naa dir dinna tom tana na” reminded me of Shreya Ghoshal singing ‘Silsila Ye Chaahat Ka’ (Devdas) for some reason. She has really sung that part beautifully. Nakash, too, complements her very well! Gulzar’s lyrics suit the classical theme very well. An exceptional melody! Classical to the core, but modernized with some nice touches in the arrangements! Signature Rahman!

Rating: 5/5

 

6. Maula Wa Sallim

(‘Maula Wa Sallim’ from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’)

Singer ~ A.R. Ameen, Music by ~ Traditional, Lyrics ~ Traditional

Next up comes the traditional Arabic track that was in the Tamil album, as it is. There was no need to dub this one; it was Arabic and stays Arabic. And it’s traditional. The song is a simplistic but ethereal prayer song, sung by A.R. Rahman’s son, A.R. Ameen. The boy carries out the song with a nice aura of spirituality around his cute voice (goosebumps when he sings “Habib-allah, rasul-allah”), but it is very obviously autotuned. Rahman’s programming on his voice sounds good, when towards the end, he triples and quadruples his voice track, giving it a very nice echo effect. The song is a perfect night time song, sublime as it is. Rahman’s own voice can be heard humming in the background, and I just love it when he hums in the backgrounds of his songs. There’s not much more to say about this one, except that it should be given a chance, before being dismissed as boring.

Rating: 4/5

 

7. Sunn Bhavara

(Newly composed song, replacement for ‘Malargal Kaetten’ from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’)

Singer ~ Shashaa Tirupati, Music by ~ A.R. Rahman, Lyrics by ~ Gulzar

“Roshan roshan bhor dikhaye, roshan roshan bhor dikhaye,
Prem ki paalki laaye, laaye, prem ki paalki laaye,
Udann khatole pe aaye bhavara, Kartab kar dikhlaye bhavara,
Sunn sunn bhavara, kaisi baatein banaaye!”

– Gulzar

This song’s counterpart in the Tamil movie, was a Carnatic classical piece, and the makers must’ve thought (and rightly so) that Carnatic music won’t have much takers in Bollywood, and so they intelligently replaced it with a wonderful Hindustani classical piece, taking the style of a nazm. Rahman’s composition is a very soothing one, the mukhda giving the most pleasant goosebumps ever imaginable. The antara is just a wonderful continuation of where the mukhda left off. The classical composition is just as heavenly as the one for ‘Saajan Aayo Re’, but this time, very pleasantly soothing instead of haunting. The composition reminded me of ‘Saathiya’s ‘Naina Milaike’. The arrangements are divine, with the tablas taking centre-stage. It actually reminded me of the beautiful nazm from ‘Haider’, ‘Aaj Ke Naam’. The tanpura at the beginning, gives a nice launchpad to the tablas. Listen for the transition from the tanpura to the tablas. Shashaa’s rendition of the classical composition is as soothing as the composition itself. Her magical voice makes the song sound all the better. This song is four and a half minutes of bliss that can’t be replaced by anything else. Finally, Gulzar’s lyrics are awesome! As always (except the title song 😛 but I think we’ve forgotten and forgiven that already!) A short review because I can’t really explain more about it! It’s too divine! Soothing!

Rating: 5/5

 

8. The Humma Song

(Remake of ‘Hamma Hamma’ from ‘Bombay’, replacement for ‘Parandhu Sellaa Vaa’ from ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’)

Singers ~ Jubin Nautiyal & Shashaa Tirupati, Rap Written & Performed by ~ Badshah, Original Composition by ~ A.R. Rahman, Music Recreated by ~ Tanishk Bagchi & Badshah, Lyrics by ~ Mehboob

“Ek ho gaye hum aur tum, toh udd gayi neendein re,
Aur khanki Paayal masti mein, do kangan khanke re!”

– Mehboob

The finale to the album takes the form of a remake to a classic Rahman dance track. The song that created waves in the 90s when it released, probably the first dubbed song to do so, ‘Hamma Hamma’ from ‘Bombay’ has been recreated by Tanishk Bagchi and Badshah. The original composition and lyrics have been left as it is. The only changes made are the singers, the arrangements of course, and that a rap portion is added (Badshah is there, so what else can you expect?) Anyway, the new programming by Tanishk and Badshah gives the song more of a lounge feel, and where the vocals in the original were raw, here they have been toned to perfection, as in, auto-tuned and polished, so as to make them sound sensuous. The remake is good when you look at it, as it serves as a nice and enjoyable song perfect for the situation. (I didn’t want to be stating that I actually wanted ‘Parandhu Sellaa Vaa’ remade, as I had loved it a lot, but yeah, I’ll not say that) The tempo has been slowed down, in order to make it more of a romantic track than a dance track, and the vocals actually sound good, if not better. (Not that I loved Remo Fernandes’ original vocals either..) Jubin takes over most of the song, while Shashaa complements him well, and the occasional ‘Hamma hamma hamma’ whispers are awesome. The arrangements have more of a club sound to them, but that signature tune has been retained and used gratuitously. The sounds have gone under a lot of treatment, but emerge as good as the old one. The Rap in the middle plays the spoilsport, and it’s like Badshah is trying to say, “Look, I featured on a Rahman album.” Our answer is, “Good. Now feature in a Rahman song!” The nadaswaram part at the end is just whacky! Of course, it was here in the original. It is insane, and ends the song on an offbeat note. Remade quite well, but could’ve done with another stanza instead of the rap.

Rating: 4/5


OK Jaanu actually turned out to be quite an ear-friendly album. I wasnt expecting it as I was thinking about the repercussions of making those Tamil songs into Hindi. However, after hearing it, I feel that part went down really well. Even the bonus song by Tanishk doesn’t take away anything from the album. Rahman uses his innate intelligence to cleverly tweak some parts of the songs that he thought wouldn’t suit in Bollywood, and the results can be seen! The only song that underperforms is ‘Kaara Fankaara’, which I don’t think I’ll be hearing much. But the others are fabulous. The second album of 2017, turns out to be worth listening on repeat!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 4 + 5 + 4.5 + 3 + 5 + 4 + 5 + 4 = 34.5

Album Percentage: 86.25%

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: Saajan Aayo Re > Enna Sona > Sunn Bhavara > Jee Lein > OK Jaanu > The Humma Song > Maula Wa Sallim > Kaara Fankaara

 

Remake Counter
Number of Remakes: 02 (from ‘Kaabil’) + 01 = 03 (Dubs not counted)

 

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

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! 🙂