SURRENDER YOUR EARS TO THIS ALBUM!! (BADRINATH KI DULHANIA – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Amaal Mallik, Tanishk Bagchi, Akhil Sachdeva & Bappi Lahiri
♪ Lyrics by: Shabbir Ahmed, Kumaar, Akhil Sachdeva, Indeevar, Ikka & Badshah
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 14th February 2017
♪ Movie Releases On: 10th March 2017

Badrinath Ki Dulhania Album Cover

Badrinath Ki Dulhania Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Badrinath Ki Dulhania is an upcoming Bollywood rom-com starring Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan. The film is directed by Shashank Khaitan and produced by Karan Johar, Hiroo Yash Johar and Apoorva Mehta. So we had a film in 2014 named ‘Humpty Sharma ki Dulhania’, which was a bit of a sleeper hit, and the cast and crew behind it happens to be the same that is behind this one. But according to the makers, it has no connection to the film except that the director, the producers and even the actors, are exactly the same. This film continues the ‘Dulhania’ franchise (If we can call it a franchise with just two films) in U.P., contrary to the setting in Punjab in the first film. Anyway, over to the musical department. Karan Johar has always delivered back-to-back hit soundtracks, and this should be no exception. I still feel guilty that I misjudged the ‘Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania’ album terribly when it released. After a month or so, it started growing amazingly. And now I love it. So I’ll be careful this time around not to make that mistake again. Here, we get a trio of composers, starting with Bollywood’s newest hit-machine, Amaal Mallik, who has composed two songs. Next up is a newcomer named Akhil Sachdeva, with one song, which hopefully is strong enough to bag him a debutant award this year, and lastly is young talent Tanishk Bagchi, who has been composing for so many multicomposer albums here and there that I’ve lost track. Both Amaal and Tanishk have delivered good songs in the past, and with Karan Johar both have a hit record, so I can’t expect anything more than catchiness (sticking to the rowdy look of the movie’s posters and all) in their tunes. As for Akhil, I hope he has something great in hand! So let’s jump right into this soundtrack!


1. Aashiq Surrender Hua

Singers ~ Amaal Mallik & Shreya Ghoshal, Music by ~ Amaal Mallik, Lyrics by ~ Shabbir Ahmed

“Arey bhagyawaan, maan bhi jaa, ladna befizool hai,
Pyaar dikhe na kya, aankhon mein padi dhool hai?
Pyaar dikhe na kya, aankhon mein padi dhool hai!!
Taj Mahal banvaana Shah Jahan ki bhool hai,
Uske paas paisa, apne haathon mein toh phool hai!
Tune gusse mein phone mera kaata toh aashiq surrender hua!”

– Shabbir Ahmed

The rowdiness starts from the very first song. And who better to get the catchiness in that rowdiness right than Amaal Mallik, who I believe is following Pritam’s footsteps in this regard? The song is an enjoyable chhed-chhad number, the type of which Bollywood’s music records of the past abound in. But very few fit the bill and actually get everything in the right place. And though this one isn’t PERFECT, it definitely gets you grooving. Amaal’s composition doesn’t rely on complicated turns and meanders for it to get famous. Instead, it takes a very heard-before but enjoyable tune, and carries it forward to make a song that impresses with its simplicity and innocence! The tune is of a type we Indians love to dance to; play it in any wedding and people will dance like crazy even if they don’t know it! And the song will propagate just like that! People will play it somewhere, it will catch on to someone else, and then to someone else, and someone else and someone else. Like a viral fever, but a good one. :p The antaras have been composed very playfully and one cannot miss that overlying South Indian flavour that the beats infuse into the song. That brings us to the arrangements. The aforementioned beats are full of heavy percussion (Dipesh Verma and team) following a kuthu rhythm, which has been laid down by Dipesh Verma, Keyur Barve and Omkar Salunkhe. As of that was not enough, the composer decides to let his assistant Krish Trivedi go all-out with the whistles. The noises with which the song starts off are just so instantly gripping! The occasional brass instruments really bring an Indian-wedding touch to the song. Other digital beats really decorate the song, which would otherwise sound like a recording from a wedding at a village. The song aptly ends with that quintessential ‘play-the-hookline-on-brass-instruments’ trick. Vocals are perfectly enjoyable and help the song to get through to the listener. The composer himself takes the mic and sings the song very efficaciously and mischievously. But of course, nobody sings such songs as well as Shreya Ghoshal, who was a great decision for it, considering that she isn’t getting too many songs like this these days! In her short one-stanza cameo, she does very well, while Amaal carries the rest of the song on his shoulders! Shabbir Ahmed’s lyrics are a clever kind of rowdy, and at least they’re decipherable and their meaning comes out clearly! Rowdy but classy!

Rating: 4/5

 

2. Roke Na Ruke Naina

Singer ~ Arijit Singh, Music by ~ Amaal Mallik, Lyrics by ~ Kumaar

“Haathon ki lakeerein do, milti jahaan hain,
Jisko pata hai bata de, jagah woh kahaan hai..
Ishq mein jaane kaisi yeh bebasi hai,
Dhadkanon se milkar bhi dil tanha hai,
Doori main mitaaoon kaise, jaane na manaaoon kaise, tu bataa?
Roke Na ruke naina, teri ore hai inhe rehna..”

– Kumaar

Next up is a pathos-filled romantic song composed by Amaal. And Amaal has composed this one in one of my favourite styles of composition for sad songs — rustic and earthy. Quite recently we heard ‘Naina’ from Pritam’s ‘Dangal’. Quite similar to that in that the song is a sad song with a traditional tune and traditional instruments. The song starts with a heart-rending sarangi piece, and gets to your heart right away. The composition by Amaal has to be one of his maturest compositions in this genre. The mukhda does a nice job in making the ambience damp and melancholic. The soothing piece is followed by an ethereal hookline, something that isn’t blurted out by the singer and forced onto the listener, but proceeds quite calmly. The antaras have yet some more beautiful notes strung together to make a heard-before but engaging stanza. Amaal treads over both high and low octaves with the antaras, and that one odd line in the antara which is made of high notes, just finds its way directly to your heart. The arrangements do half of Amaal’s work in making listeners teary-eyed. Of course the aforementioned sarangi brings in the Indian part of the pathos, as do the wonderful tablas and the oh-so-majestic flute. But Amaal cleverly tops it with acoustic guitars (Ankur Mukherjee) and drums (Debashish Banerjee), in a kind of soft rock template. When the drums interrupt out of nowhere in the till-then very traditional arrangements, I just couldn’t help but remember ‘Kabira’ (Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani). And then Amaal also puts to use nice oriental instruments like the mandolin (Tapas Roy) which sends chills down your spine when they play. The vocals are top-notch; Arijit infuses the rustic touch to them. He splendidly covers both low and high notes impeccably, as always. Kumaar has penned one of his finest lyrics for this song. A beautiful sad song, which excels in the instrumentation department!

Rating: 5/5

 

3. Humsafar

Singers ~ Akhil Sachdeva & Mansheel Gujral, Music by ~ Akhil Sachdeva, Lyrics by ~ Akhil Sachdeva

“Jitni haseen ye mulakatein hain, unse bhi pyari teri baatein hain
Baaton mein teri jo kho jaate hain, aaun na hosh mein main kabhi
Baahon mein hai teri zindagi, haaye
Sun mere humsafar, kya tujhe itni si bhi khabar?”

– Akhil Sachdeva

The new composer Akhil Sachdeva enters the album next, with his sole song, a romantic ballad, the type of which we haven’t not heard before in Bollywood. The composition follows the familiar template of Pakistani romantic songs, but nevertheless manages to tug at your heartstrings. The song starts with a nice Punjabi couplet rendered by Mansheel Gujral in her strong voice. The mukhda itself gets you swaying to the song, and it actually makes you feel happy. The hookline here too, is quite subtle, but you still get that forced feel. The antara is soothing, with its low notes, again, making you fall in love with them. But overall, there is nothing innovative in the composition. It kills with its simplicity. The arrangements are basically acoustic guitar (Veljon) riffs and digital beats that don’t really leave any scope for anything else. However, the newcomer adds a wonderful harmonica that magically uplifts the mood whenever it plays. The vocals by the composer are fine, not excellent. At places he sounds a lot like Atif Aslam, but doesn’t get the prolonged notes as right as Atif does. Also, his pronunciation needs a lot of improvement. He needs to work on his ‘jh’ sounds, which come across as ‘zzzzh’. I say this not in a demeaning manner though. On a whole, his rendition is soulful. Mansheel has more of a backing vocalist role here, but stuns in her parts. Akhil himself has written the lyrics here, and he uses all the possible Bollywood romance clichés in one song — ‘sunn mere humsafar’, ‘baahon mein teri kho jaate hain’, ‘tujhe maan loonga khuda‘ and whatnot. Nevertheless, the song makes for a good listen.

Rating: 4/5

 

4. Badri Ki Dulhania (Title Track)

Singers ~ Dev Negi, Neha Kakkar, Monali Thakur & Ikka, Additional Vocals ~ Rajnigandha Shekhawat, Music by ~ Tanishk Bagchi, Lyrics by ~ Shabbir Ahmed, Rap By ~ Ikka

“Khelan kyun na jaaye, tu hori re rasiya,
Khelan kyun na jaaye, tu hori re rasiya,
Poochhe hain tohe saari guiyaan kahaan hai Badri Ki Dulhania?”

– Shabbir Ahmed

And Tanishk makes a grand entry with the next song, which happens to be the title song of the movie. The song is an enjoyable one with a folksy rhythm and whose upbeat tempo makes you dance and sing along. The song starts with a wonderful folksy line, composed playfully. After that and a rap, Tanishk’s mukhda to the song begins, and it has all the required spunk for a successful Bollywood dance track. And then when we come to the hookline, he cleverly incorporates the tune of the folk number ‘Chalat Musafir’ to Shabbir Ahmed’s lyrics. (Or maybe Shabbir wrote it after he composed. Any which way, both of them went about it very cleverly!) The antara is a short stanza that efficiently carries forward the naughtiness and catchiness in the composition. Tanishk has to be commended for this composition, because I’ve never heard such a good song of this genre from him after ‘Banno’ (Tanu Weds Manu Returns) and that was what he composed with his friend Vayu. So hats off to him. The arrangements are amazing. The percussion (Dipesh Verma) is topnotch with a strong U.P. flavour to it, and the harmonium (Pradip Pandit) is another star of the song. The song is a holi song, and so the quintessential dhols (Deepak Bhatt) do the needful. The vocals are the strong point of the song. If someone doesn’t like the composition, they’ll fall in love with the song anyway, because of the vocals. Dev Negi, at his exuberant best, renders the male portions spot-on, while the three female vocalists all impress with their respective portions. Neha Kakkar, who takes the major chunk of the female portions, sounds cute, naughty and funny. The way she sings ‘muniya re muniya‘ is enough to melt your heart. Monali, whose ‘Cham Cham’ (Baaghi) is still on the majority of Indians’ playlists, and whose ‘Dhanak’ (Dhanak) is still on mine, renders the antara with ease, but doesn’t sound quite the innocent girl she always sounds, here! It is surprising that Neha sounds more innocent in this song! 😀 And when Neha takes over from Monali in the antara, I couldn’t even recognize Neha the first time I heard the song, and that’s saying something! The third lady vocalist is classical singer Rajnigandha Shekhawat, who sings the introductory folksy lines so beautifully, I’m in love with them. Ikka raps here, and his rap isn’t as irritating as it could have been. Maybe he toned it down a bit. He suits the rustic environment of the song, and doesn’t really rap anything odd. Shabbir Ahmed’s lyrics here are functional, if not good. An apt title song!

Rating: 4.5/5

 

5. Tamma Tamma Again

Singers ~ Bappi Lahiri & Anuradha Paudwal, Chorus ~ Dattatray Mestry, Archana Gore, Arun Ingle, Aparna Ullal, Mandar Apte, Mayuri Patwardhan, Nitin Karandikar, Deepti Rege, Voice-over ~ Ameen Sayani, Original Composition by ~ Bappi Lahiri, Music Recreated by ~ Tanishk Bagchi, Original Lyrics by ~ Indeevar, Rap by ~ Badshah

“Been bajaati hui…. NAAGIN!”

– Ameen Sayani

And Tanishk, with his second song, also closes the album, with another remake. If the previous song was a remake, then this one is definitely a remix. The makers have decided to rehash ‘Tamma Tamma’ (Thanedaar) for the movie. And thankfully, they retain the original track and just construct other additional around the sample. The composition by Bappi Lahiri (which was also ‘inspired’ by Mory Kante’s ‘Tama Tama’) was a rage in India when it released and the portion sampled in this song is the mukhda, hookline (obviously!) and one antara. Tanishk has rehashed this so well, I almost disliked it at first. He has used the song-break technique by stopping the song multiple times before actually getting to the hookline, something else which we hardly get to hear completely twice or thrice (or maybe more. I didn’t count!) But then, I realised that I had started liking the song. It happened spontaneously. One moment I was all about ‘Remakes are bad!’ and the next moment I was a freak dancing to a remake. Because it has been done very diligently, not to mention cleverly. Club beats have been added that really enhance the disco touch of the song, and the original voices have been muffled in such a way that actually does make the old song sound ‘old’! Tanishk has added very efficient beats to the hookline, like the electronic tabla. And the interlude, besides containing another interruption by Badshah, also contains a wonderful mandolin solo by Tapas Roy. The only tampering Tanishk has done with the original track is, he has added a new chorus to sing the hook, and it sounds pretty good too. Badshah’s rap does sound agitating at first, but Tanishk has enhanced that too with his nice electronic tabla beats. Ameen Sayani, the RJ of Binaca Geetmala, has done a voiceover, and the “been bajati hui naagin” part is particularly INSANE!!! Tapas Roy’s mandolin returns to play the hookline at the end of the song, and it sounds awesome then! An efficient remake!

Rating: 4/5


Badrinath Ki Dulhania is yet another feather in the cap of so many people. First of all, the composers, two relative youngsters doing so well in the competitive industry, Amaal and Tanishk, who have made two stellar songs each, and one newcomer, Akhil, who plays it safe in his debut. Next, the singers, who have really outdone themselves with their singing in this album! Dev Negi and Amaal Mallik for instance. After that, Karan Johar, because his productions always have enjoyable music, and he gets yet another successful album. Here is an album I would happily surrender my ears to. It is a kind of antidepressant album!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 4 + 5 + 4 + 4.5 + 4 = 21.5

Album Percentage: 86%

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: Roke na Ruke Naina > and then any order you like

 

Remake Counter
No. Of Remakes: 04 (from previous albums) + 02 (from Badrinath Ki Dulhania) = 06

 

Which is your favourite song from Badrinath Ki Dulhania? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING!!! (RAEES – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Ram Sampath, JAM8, Omgrown Music & Kalyanji-Anandji
♪ Lyrics by: Javed Akhtar, Indeevar, Amitabh Bhattacharya, Mayur Puri, Ram Sampath, Hiral Brahmbhatt & Manoj Yadav
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company
♪ Music Released On: 24th January 2017
♪ Movie Releases On: 25th January 2017

Raees Album Cover

Raees Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Raees is an upcoming Bollywood action / crime thriller film starring Shah Rukh Khan, Mahira Khan and Naseeruddin Shah in prominent roles. The film has been directed by Rahul Dholakia, and produced by Gauri Khan, Ritesh Sidhwani and Farhan Akhtar. The movie sees Shah Rukh Khan playing a gangster, and that’s pretty much all that we all know about it. The album has released one DAY before the movie, and that’s been frowned upon a lot, mostly by me, and I hated this promotion strategy, if you can call it a strategy. The film had three songs running around TV till the album decided to release a day before. Anyway, the music is by Ram Sampath and JAM8, which is Pritam’s Artiste & Repertoire company promoting new talent. One song by JAM8, it hasn’t been specified who has composed, while the two others are by someone named Aheer. So without further ado, (I mean, how can there be any further ado…) let’s see what this latecomer album has to offer, and whether it was worth the suspense.


1. Laila Main Laila

Singer ~ Pawni Pandey, Additional Vocals ~ Chaandni RMW & Team Omgrown, Original Composition by ~ Kalyanji-Anandji, Music Recreated by ~ Ram Sampath, Original Lyrics by ~ Indeevar, New Lyrics by ~ Javed Akhtar

“Mohabbat ka dasta, tumhe naag hai kya,
Tumhare bhi dil mein, lagi aag hai kya?
Mere liye bhi, tadapte ho tum bhi,
Main betaab jaise, tumhare liye hoon?”

– Javed Akhtar

The first song on the album takes the form of a (yes, again!!) remake of a popular old song. This time, ‘Laila O Laila’ from ‘Qurbani’ gets brought to the slaughtering counter. (Or is it? Let’s see..) Anyway, Ram Sampath takes charge of this ambitious remake. Ram Sampath is somebody I never have seen remaking songs. (Correct me if I’m wrong, but the only remake I remember him doing before is that remake of a folk song, ‘Ambarsariya’ in ‘Fukrey’). So he gets to do the remake to this hit club song of the Disco era. Kalyanji-Anandji’s tune for both mukhda and antara get retained, and that is always a pleasure to know. Not that I was a huge fan of the old song, but all celebrations in India (and please note that that is just figurative) are incomplete without this song playing at least once. With the original tune retained, remaking a song properly almost always becomes a piece of cake. Or so I thought. The tune has been retained, and the item-ish flavour has been retained, so as to keep as much similarity with the original and not make an out-of-place remake, but something still seems missing in the song. The arrangements are fantastic. What else can we expect when Taufiq Qureshi is in charge of percussions! Nothing but awe overcomes you when you hear the wonderful and grand percussions — they are so earthy! They make the song which was originally a disco song, a rural number. And that “Bubuchikum, boom bubuchikum” with which the song starts is just crazy! Thats probably one of the best parts of the song. The arrangements of course, like any item song, are incomplete without whistles and a backing chorus going “hey hey“. And everything’s been done here. Even the legendary trumpets (Ed Gibson) have been used and that epic trumpet tune to the hookline has been played throughout the song. But still, something seems missing! Pawni Pandey, who shot to fame with ‘Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Li’l Champs’, has clearly left behind her Li’l-champ-ness. She tries very hard to get the nuances and various little bits of an item song right, but to no avail. (Similar to how Chinmayi couldn’t quite sing ‘Mera Naam Mary’ from ‘Brothers’ well). She only sounds very heavenly when she sings the line, “Laila o Laila Laila, aisi tu Laila“, (she sings in her actual voice there) but not in the lines where she actually sings AS Laila. (On retrospection, I think that might be backing vocalist Chaandni RMW.. So she sounds better than Pawni!) However, that backing vocalist who sings the “phabak phabak” part in this version somewhere in the second interlude, really aces his part! 😀 The lyrics to the antaras have been changed though the tune has been retained, and they carry on the spirit of the old song. At least Javed Akhtar has written something sensible and non-vulgar for such a song too, and not something yucky and stupid. Of course, Indeevar’s classic lyrics for the mukhda can’t really be replaced, can they? Ram Sampath tries his best to deliver a smashing remake, and I must admit, this is better than other recent remakes, (first and foremost, it has no rap! Yay!) but something still lacks, and I can’t seem to understand what!

Note: As I’m writing this review, this song seems to have volatilized from my brain! I mean, it released like a month ago!

Rating: 3/5

 

2. Zaalima

Singers ~ Arijit Singh & Harshdeep Kaur, Music by ~ JAM8, Lyrics by ~ Amitabh Bhattacharya

“Deedar tera Milne ke baad hi chhooti meri angdaai,
Tu hi bataade kyun zaalima main kehlaayi?
Kyun iss tarah se duniya jahaan mein Karta hai meri ruswaai?
Tu hi bataade kyun zaalima main kehlaayi!”

– Amitabh Bhattacharya

Pritam Chakraborty’s Artists and Repertoire company, JAM8 get charge of the romantic song of the album. Now isnt it such an honour to compose a romantic song for THE Shah Rukh Khan? And I must say, the team has made a good effort in keeping with the star’s legacy. Before you start hurling curses at me, I will stop judging music by star value and let’s get on with the review! So the composer(s) [I don’t really know who it is exactly for JAM8] composes this song with a very evident feel-good vibe to it, and who doesn’t like such breezy music? The mukhda has a very sunshine-ish tune to it, and the hookline is so nicely inserted into it, just like a jigsaw puzzle piece that fits into another piece perfectly. (Must be some great quality cardboard that that jigsaw puzzle is made of! Sorry.) The mukhda contains some nice couplets followed by the interjection “zaalima“, and these couplets have been put to such a nice and playful tune, you can’t help but groove to it, though it isn’t the most conventional of tunes. It reminded me of ‘Aaj Dil Shaayraana’ (Holiday)! It also has PRITAM written all over it; the composer(s??) have done a good job of recreating his style. The mukhda also has another line, which has the most brilliant of tunes, in a high scale of notes. (It’s the part that goes “Aankhein marhaba, baatein marhaba“, in case you’re wondering.) The first antara is yet another playful tune that you just can’t get enough of, especially the seamless way the tune goes from low notes to high, in a very clever bridge note. And then the tune of that “marhaba” part comes back with different words, and so do the goosebumps! After the first antara, you think that the song would end, but JAM8 had more in store. When it continues you wait for another antara or the mukhda repeated (like most songs have nowadays) but what you get is even better. A brilliant conclusion comes in the form of nice Sufi-style lines, put to a heavenly tune and Harshdeep’s awesome vocals. The arrangements are fantastic, what with the trademark Pritam guitars and dholaks on a very breezy melody. Some techno sounds are very impressive, like that nice sound at the beginning of the song, playing all the time before Arijit starts, and after each “O zaalima” hook, and in the first interlude. A nice rhythm of daflis (Iqbal Azad), quite similar to the one Pritam himself had given in ‘Gerua’ (Dilwale), gives a nice and traditional touch to the composition. The first time the “O zaalima” hook crops up, there’s a nice hit of drums (Alan Hertz). The acoustic guitars that start the song (Pawan Rasaily & Arijit Singh) are wonderful and lure the listener into the song perfectly. Even the rock guitars actually rock whenever they play. The first antara has this wonderful ‘Tum Jo Aaye’-ish tabla rhythm, taking you back to the ‘Tum Jo Aaye’ days. The second interlude is phenomenal with a nice harmonium-led (Feroz Shaikh) traditional piece. Vocals are topnotch, with both vocalists impressing. Arijit is his usual charming self, and how I love his voice in such cheerful songs. I think even composers do, because I’m hearing less of his bawling and drawling nowadays. Harshdeep is fantastic too, and her husky voice was a perfect choice to get that small amount of rustic-ness required for the song. She also sings that conclusion stanza very convincingly. The lyrics by Amitabh Bhattacharya are a good, fine example of clever poetry and have a nice ring to them, especially when Arijit sings it. The fact that the lyrics are great has been proved already, when the makers resorted to lyrics for building up pre-release buzz for the song, instead of releasing teasers of the audio or stills from the video! “Jo tere ishq mein behka pehle se hi, kya use behkaana, O zaalima!” or “Jiski har dhadkan, tu ho aise, dil ko kya dhadkaana, O zaalima!” It is just, perfectly exemplary writing. A good attempt by ‘almost’ newbies JAM8, to create a good romantic track for SRK, and what they will get in return for this is exposure i.e, exposure that being in an SRK film gives you. Surely, bigger projects are in store for them now after the middling ‘1920 London’ last year!

Note: I’m not too sure whether it is the same people behind this song for JAM8, who were behind the songs for ‘1920 London’ (Kaushik-Akash).

Rating: 3.5/5

 

3. Udi Udi Jaye

Singers ~ Sukhwinder Singh, Bhoomi Trivedi & Karsan Sagathia, Music by ~ Ram Sampath, Lyrics by ~ Javed Akhtar

“Kehne ko toh khel hai yeh tera mera sanjha,
Par mera dil hai patang aur teri nazar manjha,
Manjhe se lipti yeh patang judi judi jaaye!”

– Javed Akhtar

Ram Sampath re-enters into the album that was rightly his before JAM8 were taken on board. His next song is a garba track, but it has shades of a romantic track. And this blend has been done so well, that at one point you think it’s a dance number you’re listening to, and at another point, you think it is an out-and-out romantic song. The composition, though quite typical to the genre, is very sweet and innocent, especially the wonderfully crafted hookline. Yes, it has a bit of a 90s touch to it, but that makes it sound all the more charming. The mukhda is a direct plunge into the melody of the song, with the hookline ‘hooking’ you from the very start, just like a hookline is supposed to. That one line that Ram has composed so that we can actually say there is some kind of mukhda (The ‘kehne ko toh khel hai…‘ part) is just sooooo sweet, and whenever it repeats in the chorus, you just can’t help but smile. The antaras have been composed in a just as melodious tune, with an even more evident 90s feel to it, and that touch makes it sound as good as it does! (You see, I have no qualms with 90s touches when they’re well done!) In the second interlude, there’s a wonderful very folksy Gujarati part, crooned by Karsan Sagathia, and that is something to look out for in the song. I like the way Ram has composed such a flavourful Gujarati track, though he isn’t Gujarati himself. That just reflects the unity in diversity of India once again, I guess? 😀 The arrangements are wonderful, and make the song sound grand. If you close your eyes and listen to them, you might just feel you are in the middle of a big Navratri function in the heartlands of Gujarat itself. The powerful, booming percussion (Nitish Ranadive) just can’t be ignored, as it provides such a foot-tapping beat throughout the song. The Gujarati folksy string instruments have been put to great use. That mandolin (Tapas Roy) is just too splendid to ignore! Overall, the arrangements by Sampath set up this very happy and grand ambience, and transport you to Gujarat. Vocals are too impressive to be true. Sukhwinder, as always, is great, but his voice sounds exceptionally well here — barring those small autotunes I can hear occasionally! And the “Chaiyya Chaiyya” (Dil Se) magic is recreated! Bhoomi Trivedi gets her next big song right after her debut in ‘Ram-Leela’, and making great use of the space she gets here, she shines. Her husky voice proves just right for the track, and at places, she sounds just like Sunidhi Chauhan. Karsan’s small interlude, is fantastic, and I don’t know whether it’s a new recording, or a recording of one of his old songs. Probably the former. I don’t know. I don’t think it should matter too. 😛 Javed Akhtar’s lyrics are good; a nice romantic touch is added to the Garba setting with his words. Other than that, there wasn’t anything too exceptional about them. 🙂 A song that will go down as one of the best Garba songs of Bollywood, joining the *recent* hits like ‘Nagada Sang Dhol’ (Ram-Leela), ‘Shubhaarambh’ (Kai Po Che).

Rating: 4/5

 

4. Dhingana

Singer ~ Mika Singh, Additional Vocals by ~ Team Omgrown, Music Composed by ~ Aheer for JAM8, Music Produced by ~ Omgrown Music (Ram Sampath’s company), Lyrics by ~ Mayur Puri

“Farzi, duniya hai farzi, tedhi jab kar di ungli, toh seedhi chali,
Marzi, apni marzi, jab Hoti gardi, kismat gale lagi
Dhingana dhingana, dhandhe ka dhingana!”

– Mayur Puri

JAM8 comes back with yet another song on the album, this one credited specifically to new composer Aheer composing for JAM8. The song is your everyday gangster song, something full of attitude and loud beats that you might expect to play everywhere around for a while after the film releases. The composition by Aheer is quite good, getting the attitude and spunk quotient right, with the mukhda particularly starting the song off on a note that would get the listener hooked. As it progresses towards the hookline, the composition does get a bit heard-before and tedious, but bearable. It isn’t like the composition would bore you. The hookline itself is full of that gangster attitude. The one antara that follows too, has a nice retro-styled composition, and reminds one of Amitabh Bachchan’s Angry young Man days. One thing is for sure though, that this song will be played numerous times in parties and functions. The arrangements are your normal massy song fare, with loud masala movie styled percussions (that sound a bit too loud, thus reminding me of Sajid-Wajid’s ‘Madamiyan’ from ‘Tevar’), and cool guitars (Shon Pinto). The star of the arrangements, though, has to be the rock guitars tune, the one we heard in the trailer, and what people were calling the “Raees Theme”. They should’ve released an instrumental track based on that trumpet-and-guitars piece! Vocals by Mika are surprisingly not as irritating as they could’ve been, and that’s saying quite something! He adds a bit of a grunge to his voice in places, and it sounnds great! The song’s duration has been kept very short, under three minutes, and rightly so, situational as it is. Mayur Puri, returning in a film album as Lyricist after quite some time, writes functional lyrics, and from what I gather, it is a song where the gangster and his henchmen are celebrating about the success of their business. Enjoyable, but to an extent, that unfortunately gets reached quite soon.

Rating: 3/5

 

5. Enu Naam Che Raees

Singers ~ Ram Sampath & Tarannum Malik, Additional Vocals by ~ Team Omgrown, Music by ~ Ram Sampath, Lyrics by ~ Ram Sampath & Hiral Brahmbhatt

“Enu naam chhe Raees, Enu naam chhe Raees,
Akkhi duniya mein yeh single piece, single piece!
Heilo haalaro, hulle hullare ho!!!”

– Ram Sampath & Hiral Brahmbhatt

Here comes another theme song revolving around the central character, Raees. This one has been composed by Ram Sampath and I’m guessing, was part of the album before SRK started making amendments in the album. I say that because it is horribly disappointing! The composition is a typpppppical Ram Sampath composition. But that’s not bad, is it? Well, it isn’t but the result isn’t too satisfactory either. Yes, the composition does have certain hooks that make it work, like the “Heilo haalaro hulle hullare ho…” loop, which is family catchy, but as a whole, it just doesn’t work out as a theme song which it is meant to be. The hookline seems like something that has been composed for an advertising campaign, and doesn’t seem like something you would add into a Bollywood album. Okay, even if it were sounding like an advertising campaign and sounded good, it would be fine. However, the result is a mishmash of confused sounds and tunes. Barring the vocal loop I pointed out, everything seems below the standards. I don’t even get how the track, which is heavy on trippy Latino and club beats, has found a place in such a folksy (till now) album. It is a bit too far-fetched, no? Arrangements are just that: A confused mash of techno beats and Taufiq Qureshi-ish percussion by Farai Arendse and Dayo Afolayan. Also, I don’t know where the Salsa-style beats came from in this song! Vocals by Ram Sampath sound good, but again, it really does not go well with the rest of the album. Again, the vocalists who have sung the vocal loop, fascinate. Ram Sampath and Hiral Brahmbhatt’s lyrics are a good description of Raees’s character, but could’ve done with a much better comoosition. Sadly, so underwhelming a theme song, that I don’t know if it even will be remembered as one.

Rating: 2.5/5

 

6. Saanson Ke

Singer ~ K.K., Additional Vocals by ~ Thomson Andrews, Ryan Dias, Dean Sequeira, Murishka Dcruz, Shazneen Arethna, Gwen Dias, Music by ~ Aheer for JAM8, Lyrics by ~ Manoj Yadav

“Main kis manzil ka raahi hoon, tu kinn raahon pe laayi hai
Samajh paaun na main tujhko, naa tu mujhko…
Jo na manzoor hai mujhko, wohi manzoor hai tujhko
Samajh paaun na main tujhko, naa tu mujhko…”

– Manoj Yadav

As soon as the next song starts, you wonder whether you accidentally opened the “Raaz 5” album. The piano notes that the song starts with evoke memory of everything pertaining to the Bhatts. JAM8 returns yet again, with Aheer helming it yet again. And what follows is a very mediocre sad song, that would have (okay, might have) sounded better in any Bhatt album! The composition has been delivered strictly according to the Bhatts’ needs and requirements, and that template has been followed perfectly. Melancholia, check. Acoustic guitars and strings, check. K.K., check. However, was there any need of such a song here? A wonderfully earthy sad song a la ‘Naina’ (Dangal) could very well have been made as well. And my frustration about this song is much less about it being a trademark Bhatt-ish melody, than it is about it being such a mediocre composition! I mean, Shah Rukh had called in JAM8 to enhance the album, as he thought it was underwhelming, but in such short notice, all that JAM8 too, could offer, is this underwhelming song too! Everything about the composition sounds too heard-before and gives you the feeling that you could just as well hear all of this song’s elements in some other, better, actual Bhatt movie song! That much about the composition. Arrangements fare much better, what with a haunting chorus joining in to make it sound all the more pensive (and also dated, at times). The guitars (Roland Fernandes) help the song nicely throughout the duration. The strings very majestically grace the hookline. The best part of the arrangements are the clarinets and flutes (both by Shirish Malhotra), which you might need to strain your ears to listen to. K.K. as usual, aces the vocals, but again, I can’t help but thinking how bored he must’ve been singing this — a melody, the type of which he has sung a thousand times before! Manoj Yadav’s lyrics are a pleasure to hear, and provide the respite that the other aspects of the song do not. A misfit.

Rating: 2.5/5

 

7. Ghammar Ghammar

Singer ~ Roshan Rathod, Music Produced by ~ Ram Sampath, Composition & Lyrics ~ Traditional

“Ghammar Ghammar maru valonu gaaje,
Shaam aavi ne maari matuki phode!”

– Traditional

The last track on the album is a fun Gujarati folk song recreated by Ram Sampath. And I must say, it is quite impressive! The traditional composition has been given a nice techno revamp, and Roshan Rathod has rendered quite zestfully. What’s most impressive is that the techno sounds and the folk instruments blend perfectly and the techno sounds do not tamper the folksy feel of the song whatsoever. I really have nothing much more to say about this! Just enjoy this one! A short track to dance on in Navratri and/or Janmashtami! 😀

Rating: 3/5


Raees turned out to be quite some disappointment. First of all, you would think an album releasing so late (ONE DAY BEFORE THE MOVIE!!) must be so good for it to be delayed so much. After hearing the album, I could gather that the delay must be due to last-minute additions that clearly went wrong. Ram Sampath’s original music for the film getting scrapped, and JAM8’s new songs (out of which one is great, one is above average, and the other is average) being added like one month before the film releases, takes its toll on the album itself. Whatever was the idea behind this last-minute change of music really backfired on the music itself. And all the pre-release hype that could’ve been created by music has just been wasted. I can just say, Much ado about nothing!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 3 + 3.5 + 4 + 3 + 2.5 + 2.5 + 3 = 21.5

Album Percentage: 61. 43%

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: Udi Udi Jaye > Zaalima > Ghammar Ghammar > Dhingana > Laila Main Laila > Saanson Ke = Enu Naam Che Raees

 

Remake Counter
No. Of Remakes: 03 (from previous albums) + 01 (from Raees) = 04

 

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