VISHAL-SHEKHAR’S STRONG MUSICAL KICK!! (AKIRA – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Vishal-Shekhar
♪ Lyrics by: Manoj Muntashir & Kumaar
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 16th August 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 2nd September 2016

Akira Album Cover

Akira Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Akira is an upcoming Bollywood action film starring Sonakshi Sinha in the titular role, and Konkona Sen Sharma and Anurag Kashyap in other prominent roles. The movie has been directed by A.R. Murugadoss and produced by himself along with Fox Star Studios. It is the first time Murugadoss isn’t remaking his own movie into Hindi (remember ‘Ghajini’ and ‘Holiday’?) But he’s still remaking somebody else’s movie. And that somebody and his move happens to be Santha Kumar’s 2011 Tamil flick ‘Mouna Guru’. But there’s a twist, which is that, the main character in this movie has been shown as a strong female character, going on the lines of woman empowerment, replacing the male character in the original. The story is about a girl named Akira who finds it difficult to adjust to the society she lives in, and ends up displaying her anger, by which she often ends up in trouble. Troubled by her trouble, she is sent to Mumbai, where she gets into trouble again, as we can guess from the trailer. What trouble, how trouble, why trouble and which trouble (and who trouble, too, if you will) is what we will discover in the movie, but I see a corrupt cop played by Kashyap in the trailer so that would change things a lot, I guess. 😛 Anyway, I’m here to talk about the music. After going for A.R. Rahman in ‘Ghajini’ and Pritam in ‘Holiday’, Murugadoss experiments again and tries out a duo that is working with him for the first time, and a duo that is just done with giving one of the best commercial albums of the year, ‘Sultan’. Yup, behind the music of ‘Akira’ are none other than Vishal-Shekhar, who surely have worked hard for the album, and after ‘Sultan’, I’m expecting a lot from them, though the movie isn’t music-oriented at all. The duo has made four songs, with one of them featuring in two versions, making that a total of five tracks. Without further ado, let’s see how much of a kick or punch the music of ‘Akira’ is!


1. Rajj Rajj Ke (Version 1) / Rajj Rajj Ke (Version 2)
Singers ~ Sonakshi Sinha & Vishal Dadlani / Nahid Afrin & Vishal Dadlani, Lyrics by ~ Kumaar

The duo starts the album off with a power-packed theme song, that automatically goes and makes itself a place with songs like ‘Jee Karda’ (Badlapur) and ‘Chhil Gaye Naina’ (NH10). The angst and frustration takes the form of a catchy, heart-touching and foot-tapping song that showcases the nature of the main character very well. The duo has excelled with the composition, gathering various notes that sound pretty energetic and full-of-fury when put together. The song starts with Vishal singing a line that is so soft, yet it is a wonderful opening to the energy and power that is to follow in the rest of the song. The mukhda is a beautifully haunting tune which lures you into the song, in quite a spooky way, but all the spookiness is enjoyable and awe-inspiring. The antara is something that will leave you in shock, with your jaw wide open; it treads on a wide range of notes, starting high and ending low, and how beautifully! The hookline is what you would call a power-packed line. All the fury and emotions of the singer gets poured out in just that one line, and it is sooooo touching, in a unique way! Vishal-Shekhar’s booming arrangements are another reason to hear the song on loop, what with rock guitar strums helping to increase the energy, while drums help the hookline sound marvelous. The first interlude is a wonderful Spanish guitar solo, which sounds astounding! The whole song is placed on an upbeat and groovy beat, which you would love to hear on loop! On the vocals front, the song, featuring in two versions, gets a different treatment from each of the two female singers. While Sonakshi, singing just as a publicity stunt, surprisingly pulls off the song quite commendably (sounding like a non-autotuned Kanika Kapoor), ‘Indian Idol Junior’ Season 1’s finalist Nahid Afrin stuns in her Bollywood debut, and steals the show in her version. The way she sings “Dard bedarrrdaaaa” at the end of the hookline, is so haunting! Her rendition of the wonderfully composed antara is something you can’t afford to miss! Vishal Dadlani, on the other hand, sings his one line, “Dard Bedardaaa, Dard Bedardaaa” in a very rustic voice, with two tracks of his voice over later upon each other, and sounding great! Kumaar’s lyrics display very well the misery/fury of the protagonist and suits the theme very well. Vishal-Shekhar score with the very first song on the album, which is definitely an energetic high! Though both versions are good, I would recommend Nahid’s version to the music lovers! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

2. Purza
Singer ~ Arijit Singh, Lyrics by ~ Manoj Muntashir

With the next song, it seems like Vishal-Shekhar have totally forgotten the angst and fury of the first song, and have drowned themselves into complete romantic mode, but again, when it is Vishal-Shekhar, you can never expect a straightforward, in-your-face romantic song, and that’s just the case with this one, too. The duo has composed a very upbeat and feel-good romantic song, which definitely leaves you puzzled at its unexpected twists and turns; as I said, you can never expect anything straightforward from this duo! The mukhda very beautifully introduces the listener to a very happy-sounding romantic song, which has shades of 90s IndiPop music. The hookline is just bliss, with a very cute repetition of a fabulous line, which will just make your day with its wide range of notes, ranging from low to high. The antaras are just as beautiful, with a very distinct Vishal-Shekhar touch, and reminding me a bit of their ‘Taxi No. 9211’ days, with love songs like ‘Ek Nazar Mein Bhi’. The instrumentation is another marvel by the duo. Acoustic guitars galore, they set the right ambience for the song, while the drums kick in to infuse the spunk into the song. Later on, we witness a wonderful fusion of European-styled harmonica with Caribbean percussion. The interlude after the first antara is one of the most diverse ones I’ve seen in such a breezy romantic song! Starting with apt techno sounds, and going back to the regular acoustic guitars, that interlude is a marvel to hear and believe! Vocals by Arijit are smack-on-the-bulls-eye, and in spite of the various dim-witted people on YouTube commenting stuff like, “Sorry, Arijit, this one wasn’t for you brother”, and “Arijit, itna ghatiya gaana kyun gaaya??” (which, in short, means, “Arijit, why did you sing such a horrible, terrible, nasty, unpleasant song?!”) I would like to believe that Arijit has sung with all his charm, and those who are open to Arijit singing songs other than songs from the ‘Raaz’, ‘Jannat’, ‘Murder’, and ‘Aashiqui’ franchises, would definitely appreciate hit vocals in this one! Manoj Muntashir’s lyrics reach another high, with very charming and cute romantic lyrics, and coupled with Vishal-Shekhar’s cute tune, they sound even more beautiful! A wonderful romantic song that not only defines how great Vishal-Shekhar are at making unique romantic songs, but also how to make a romantic song with Arijit, without relying on a melancholic tune to do the work for you! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Kehkasha Tu Meri
Singer ~ Shekhar Ravjiani, Lyrics by ~ Manoj Muntashir

It seems that Vishal-Shekhar are finding it harder to leave the romance behind, than the fury! Because here they are, back with a romantic song, the second in an album where you would least expect even one of them! The song happens to be a remake of the duo’s own ‘Haravali Pakhare’, one of their two songs from the album of the Marathi movie ‘Balak Palak’. The composition is a gem of a composition, with every note touching the bottom of your heart, and stubbornly refusing to get out from your mind. The mukhda is bliss, North-Eastern folk screaming at you froim every note, and the way it connects with the hookline, with a brisk “Roshani Se bhari”, is spectacular and a delight to the ears. The hookline itself, though sounding very, very heard-before, is very charming. The antara takes a rather mellow route, with the notes taking unexpected downward twists, before things go back to the heavenly “Roshani Se Bhari” line, and the wondrous hookline. The arrangements are also not very unique or different, but manage to leave you in a very calmed state. Scintillating sounds of chimes and sparkling sounds lighten your mood up, while things crank up a bit during the hookline, with the duffs playing a nice Assamese rhythm. The piano and strings accompany each other very well in the interlude, and you are free to just drown in the bliss! Shekhar, with his soft and silky voice, renders the song with ease and charm; then again, when does he not sound charming!? I couldn’t help but remember Javed Ali’s voice, and how I wish there was another version sung by him too! 😀 Manoj yet again, impresses you with his lyrics, though simple. I contradict my own statement, and say that Vishal-Shekhar make straightforward romantic songs too, but just as beautifully as the twisted ones!! This is a perfect example of that! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

4. Baadal
Singer ~ Sunidhi Chauhan, Lyrics by ~ Manoj Muntashir

The pathos enters the album with the final song on it, and in a very IndiPop manner. The duo ends the album with a melancholy tune, which fails to impress as much as the other songs, but still manages to stay with you for quite a good amount of time. The duo’s composition actually sounds like they’re stuck in the early 2000s and forgot to change things in the song to make it sound like it is new. The mukhda is painfully stale-sounding, but the antara makes up for it with a cool assortment of notes that actually touch your heart. Otherwise, the song’s emotion is quite hollow and not so touching. The arrangements constitute not much but a guitar loop that sounds quite trippy, but overdone so much, that you find it kind of irritating towards the end! The arrangements could have had much more happening back there, but the duo seems to have been in a time constraint to deliver this track, hence the shortcomings! Sunidhi, however, manages to leave her mark, as always. Her bold voice is perfect for the song, and the confident way she does her aalaaps, even though she hasn’t been trained in classical music, is commendable! She sings the hookline very charmingly, and you can’t help but fall in love with her voice yet again! Hernhigh notes are a pleasure to hear too! Manoj seems to have been struggling to write something emotional, so that it seems to come out as a desperate attempt to turn the protagonist’s eyes into clouds — we don’t know if it is the black ones or white ones, mind you! 😀 A decent melody, rescued by Sunidhi’s confident carriage!


Akira is an album which definitely wasn’t supposed to have such astounding music, as I had thought when it was announced itself! Without having much scope to do so, Vishal-Shekhar manage to create four songs, with two romantic ones that will surely stay with you for long, an energetic song that redefines the meaning of anthems, and a sad song that doesn’t work as much as the makers would’ve wanted it to! Anyway, these three songs are more than enough to shine in an album where even two astounding songs would be a surprise! After the great and commercially appealing album to ‘Sultan’, Vishal-Shekhar deliver a power-packed kick with this album as well!

 

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: Purza > Kehkasha Tu Meri > Rajj Rajj Ke (Version 2 — Nahid) > Rajj Rajj Ke (Version 1 — Sonakshi) = Baadal

 

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

 

Next “dish”: Baar Baar Dekho, Chefs: Jasleen Royal, Amaal Mallik, Arko Pravo Mukherjee, Bilal Saeed, Badshah, Prem Hardeep

DEMOLITION OF THE MUSICAL HOUSE THAT WAS ONCE FULL!!! (HOUSEFULL 3 – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Sohail Sen, Mika Singh, Milind Gaba, Sharib-Toshi & Tanishk Bagchi
♪ Lyrics by: Sameer Sen, Farhad-Sajid, Earl Edgar, Sanjeev Chaturvedi, Mamta Sharma, Arafat Mehmood, Rani Malik, Manoj Yadav & Danish Sabri
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 9th May 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 3rd June 2016

Housefull 3 Album Cover

Housefull 3 Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Housefull 3 is an upcoming Bollywood comedy film, starring Akshay Kumar, Riteish Deshmukh, Abhishek Bachchan, Jacqueline Fernandez, Lisa Haydon and Nargis Fakhri in lead roles, with Boman Irani and Jackie Shroff in supporting roles. The film is directed by Farhad-Sajid, and produced by Sajid Nadiadwala. The movie is the third part in the ‘Housefull’ franchise, and we can see where the franchise is heading. The quality of the second part was nohere near that of the first; I doubt that the third one will even match the second, going by the trailer. As for the music, the first part had an awesome and enjoyable album by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. The second had quite a decent album by Sajid-Wajid, which didn’t match up to the first, but was good anyway. The third part however, has a multicomposer album, and I’ve seen where multi-composer albums go with comedy films (Ahem, ‘Welcome Back’, we’re hinting at you…!) The list of composers isn’t so impressive, either, and each team gets only one song, so, yeah…! Sharib-Toshi, fresh from the success (*cough cough*) of their three songs from the ‘1920 London’ album, are the first music directors in the album. Not expecting something great from them, but I will be happy if they manage to give something good, because here they can’t give typical Bhatt-ish stuff, can they? 😂 The next is Sohail Sen. I wonder from where he ended up doing this album, but nevertheless, expectations are high from him as he seems to be the composer I like the most in this album! After ‘Gunday’, a great song is expected. The third composers on the list are Mika Singh and his all-time partner Millind Gaba. (I think it’s the other way around.. Mika is the partner of Millind… I guess…?) I am not expecting anything from them, going by their ridiculous title song in ‘Welcome Back’. And the last composer is Tanishk Bagchi. Now, he has been impressing right from ‘Tanu Weds Manu Returns’ to ‘Kapoor & Sons’ to the recent ‘Sarbjit’. He had got a rom-com action film ‘Direct Ishq’ in between, where he didn’t impress much, so let’s see how he does in this rom-com! Read on to find out how the songs of the much awaited ‘Housefull 3’ are!


1. Pyar Ki
Singers ~ Nakash Aziz, Anmol Malik, Divya Kumar & Sharib-Toshi, Rap by ~ Earl Edgar, Music by ~ Sharib-Toshi, Lyrics by ~ Manoj Yadav, Farhad-Sajid & Danish Sabri

Sharib-Toshi, back after their middling songs in ‘1920 London’ (I thought they wouldn’t dare to make music after that!) get the very first song in the album. Sharib-Toshi have had a decent track record with upbeat songs, the best being ‘Emotional Fool’ (Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania) for me. Here, they give an upbeat track with literally no meaning, except a trying-to-be-catchy composition, which works to some extent. The makers play it safe by employing four lyricists on this track, so we can’t catch the culprit who is feeding nonsense to our ears! Well, good escape!! Sharib-Toshi’s composition does appeal on and off, but when it does, something has to spoil it — either the lyrics or the vocals. Frankly, the composition is catchy. A hookline that is perfect for Bollywood and specifically, such movies in Bollywood, does grab your attention, while the other parts of the song have been composed pretty good too. Divya’s Qawwali portion is a good addition. In spite of the decent composition, the lyrics are atrocious. Manoj, Farhad, Sajid and Danish team up to give lyrics that try to be smart with a very stupid double meaning hookline, that doesn’t even shock you in the least. In the rap portion, I’m guessing written by Danish, as I can even hear him singing (though not credited!), it is suggested that the relationship of two lovers is just like that of bread and JAM! 😛 In the song, the moon gains weight (“Chaand ko chadh gayi hai charbi”) and the Sun starts talking in Arabic! (“Sooraj bhi laga bakkne Arabi”) These idiotic lines make the song appeal even more, and cater to your laughter. And the rap (I’m mentioning it again..) is a must-hear! 😂😂 On the vocals front, two singers try to save the song, with Nakash using his totally lovable voice, and Divya singing a wonderful Qawwali bit. Anmol, however, is back with her over-stylish vocals singing ‘baby’ like ‘baibaa’ and interfering by inserting random “yeaaahh”s everywhere. Earl’s rap is stupid. Sharib-Toshi’s arrangements are catchy, too. Mostly techno sounds, but they do surprise by adding good Spanish guitars and harmonium in between. A ridiculously funny start to the album! This time Sharib-Toshi do commendably well, but others spoil their work! Oh, yeah.. And salute to the lyricists! They’re surely gonna win awards worldwide for that!

 

2. Taang Uthake
Singers ~ Mika Singh, Mamta Sharma, Neeti Mohan & Sohail Sen, Backing Vocals by ~ Hrishikesh Chury & Madan Shukla, Music by ~ Sohail Sen, Lyrics by ~ Sameer Sen, Farhad-Sajid, Mamta Sharma & Sanjeev Chaturvedi

Here comes another song with a Topsy-Turvy name. Sohail Sen holds the baton for this one, and fails to do much wonder with it. The composition is the typical Bollywood-Dappankuthu combo, with the typical kuthu rhythm supporting the Bappi Lahiri-styled composition. Sohail tries hard to create another ‘Tune Maari Entriyaan’, but fails miserably. All he manages to create is a decent dance track, which isn’t a sureshot earworm. The composition being very stale and heard-before types, it does not appeal as much as ‘Tune Maari Entriyaan’ either. Sohail has roped in Mika as the lead male singer, singing for three actors, while Mamta and Neeti get their voices superimposed on each other, and thank God Neeti’s voice is clearly audible, while you have to strain your ears to hear Mamta’s, which I’m sure nobody will do. Their parts, trough, have been composed very good, and are actually catchy, especially the second antara. Mika, as always, eats up most of his words, and in a line says something like “Kiltapille pultapille”. He puts in that unusual dog sound while singing, and it seems more dog-like ever since he sang that wonderfully catchy song ‘Tu Mere Agal Bagal Hai’ (Phata Poster Nikhla Hero)! But sadly, the same magic hasn’t been repeated here. Sohail’s arrangements remind you of ‘Tune Maari Entriyaan’, and I guess he has copy-pasted the same rhythm into this song. The dhols, rock guitars, are all the same. He seems to have added the brass band and Shehnaai. And now, coming to the lyricists! Here, there are not two, not three and not even four, but a total of FIVE lyricists! (Plus, Mamta is one of them!) And what can they offer? A song about lifting up your legs and dancing the whole night! What an amazing concept!! I was really awestruck on hearing the lyrics! Too good! If you think I would say all that, you’re so much mistaken. Judge for yourself. Here are some lines — “Jhoomega body ka har part taang uthake”… So are you telling me that our legs have legs, toes have legs, fingers have legs, our eyes have legs, our ears have legs, our stomach has legs, our pancreas has legs, our appendix has legs, our lungs have legs and everything else has legs? Thanks for the wonderful lesson on anatomy! I never knew all this! 😀 Here’s another one — “Main wine Ki bottle, jismein nasha total, all the guys just want a piece of me”… No comments… So, you get the idea! All the lines are just a mishmash of supposedly “fun” words, but none appeal. It’s just a compilation of lines from various dance songs which have come and gone across the years. A catchy composition, but everything else, boring! Lyrics again, deserve a standing ovation, for giving such an unknown fact about human anatomy!

 

3. Malamaal
Singers ~ Mika Singh, Akira, Miss Pooja & Kuwar Virk, Music by ~ Mika Singh & Millind Gaba, Lyrics by ~ Rani Malik & Farhad-Sajid

Mika has already driven us crazy in ‘Taang Uthake’, and now he’s here to compose a song with Millind Gaba, someone whose songs I’ve never liked. This is a Punjabi wedding song, which has a pretty enjoyable composition, but gets boring after a minute, because if the atrocious vocals and lyrics, again! The starting has a dholak portion that sounds like the start of ‘Balam Pichkari’, but just for a second. After that, a very poorly recorded female sangeet portion, only to be disturbed by Bhangra elements like that phurr phurr sound. Mika sings in an utterly intolerable high pitch, which is sure to puncture your eardrums if you hear it for too long. The female singers don’t help. Miss Pooja’s voice isn’t as harsh as usual, but is more irritating than ever. Akira, who had a song in the recent ‘Santa Banta Pvt. Ltd.’, has only one single line in the song, which I suspect is a line that had to be replaced, because it’s smack in the middle of Miss Pooja’s stanza. And her voice is atrocious! Hear it in ‘Ishq Karle Anytime’ (Santa Banta Pvt. Ltd.) for a more detailed hearing experience. Millind and Mika have horribly and terribly recorded the “song”, if I can call it one. It sounds as if we are hearing it on a radio in some garage. Heck, garages pick up a better signal, than this song’s recording makes it sound like! Irritating Bhangra sounds make up most of the arrangements, with harmonium, techno sounds, and the quintessential tumbi pitching in occasionally. The lyrics are by Rani Malik, a pretty renowned lyricist of the 90s, and she writes lyrics that will put all the lyricists of the album to shame. They’ll wonder how they couldn’t come up with such bad lyrics and they’ll curse themselves for not torturing the listeners as much as she has. Here’s an example — “Mauka hai dastoor bhi hai, Par why you standing far. Take me in your arms raja, Like a true sardar”. It is an insult of Hinglish!! Farhad-Sajid too force their names in the lyricists list; I guess they must’ve made up one or two lines in each song, and hence, they feature as lyricists on every song. ATROCIOUS!!!! RIDICULOUS!!! YUCK!! Stepping on cow dung in the village with bare feet is better than hearing this, because at least we can wash our feet, whereas this song won’t even get washed out of your brain!

 

4. Fake Ishq
Singers ~ Kailash Kher, Nakash Aziz & Altamash Faridi, Music by ~ Tanishk Bagchi, Lyrics by ~ Arafat Mehmood & Farhad-Sajid

Tanishk is back after a mediocre and a mindblowing song in ‘Sarbjit’. I had praised him for not making his rock Qawwali ‘Allah Hu Allah’ in ‘Sarbjit’, filmy at all. And lo and behold! Here he comes with a filmy rock Qawwali, just against my wishes. Just as I expected, he overdoes the filminess, and ends up spoiling everything. The singers lineup will not make you think so, by trust me, the singing is horrendous! I’ve never seen Kailash Kher singing so badly, in such an unnecessarily high voice, and whenever I have, it sounded pleasant! Nakash’s talent has been purely wasted by making him wail random “Abbaaaa”‘s all throughout the song, which is a real pest to the ears. Altamash is the most modest, only showing up in the hookline — that too, overshadowed by Kailash’s booming voice. Nakash gets to do an atrociously worded AdLib before the Qawwali actually starts, but he sings it decently. Tanishk’s core composition is pretty boring, too, desperately trying to ape Sohail Sen’s ‘Isq Risk’ (Mere Brother Ki Dulhan) which was leagues ahead, and of a totally different level. The composition is ridiculously high-pitched, and a troublesome one too, at that. It is tooooooo dull and toooooo trying-to-be-emotional. Arrangements too, sound odd. I’ve never heard a shehnaai in a Qawwali before, and it doesn’t sound good, I’ve learned today! The rock element hasn’t been overdone, though, and thankfully, most of the arrangements are the usual tabla and harmonium. The lyrics, yet again, do not impress at all!!! “Bada fake tha pehle, yeh ishq ishq, yeh ishq ishq. Abb nek lagey hai, yeh ishq ishq”.  Wow, you must have got a very weak heart, man. “Emotion Ke jo taar hil gaye, kele Ke chhilke jaise chhil Gaye, love mein hum kill Gaye”. This line is trying so hard to be funny.. Hahahaha! Here, I laughed.. Happy? And lines like “Aeroplane Se rail ho Gaye” and “Topper se hum fail ho Gaye”, “Heaven Se hum hell ho Gaye” (pronounced by Kailash as ‘Hail’, so that makes sense, because hail comes from heaven, right?) just degrade the song even more. An insult to the Qawwali genre, a miserable copy of ‘Isq Risk’, an insult to a legend like Kailash, and a waste of his talent. Was expecting better from Tanishk!


You saw how “good” Housefull 3 was. Yes, it was funny. Yes, it is a comedy movie. But comedy movies can have better soundtracks. I think a single composer would’ve done way better on the album! And if they really wanted multiple composers, just to keep on with the trend, I guess, more experienced composers would have done better. In my opinion, Sohail should have done the Qawwali. 😀 Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and Sajid-Wajid’s albums guaranteed a house full opening for the first two films… Not sure about this one, though!! 😂

 

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: Pyar Ki > Taang Uthake > Fake Ishq = Malamaal

 

Which is your favourite song from Housefull 3? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

 

Note: ‘Housefull 3’ being a June release, it will be counted in the June Music Mastani Monthly awards… Just reviewed it because ‘Waiting’ and ‘Veerappan’ albums are still awaited! 😣