SITUATIONALL HAI KYA? (JUDGEMENTALL HAI KYA – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Rachita Arora, Arjuna Harjai, Daniel B. George, Tanishk Bagchi & Badshah
♪ Lyrics by: Prakhar Varunendra, Kumaar, Prakhar Vihaan, Navi Kamboz, Tanishk Bagchi & Raja Kumari
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company
♪ Music Released On: 20th July 2019
♪ Movie Released On: 26th July 2019

Listen to the songs: JioSaavn | Gaana

Buy the songs: iTunes


Judgementall Hai Kya is a psychological thriller / black comedy film that stars Kangana Ranaut, Rajkummar Rao, Amyra Dastur, Amrita Puri and Hussain Dalal. The film is directed by Prakash Kovelamudi and produced by Ekta Kapoor and Shailesh R Singh. The film has a music album by four composers — Rachita Arora of ‘Newton’ and ‘Mukkabaaz’ fame, Daniel B. George, the background music composer for the film, Arjuna Harjai (‘Titoo MBA’ and ‘Lucknow Central’ fame) and Tanishk Bagchi (remakes fame). I have already watched the movie, so my music review will refer to it in some places, but rest assured that it is completely spoiler-free!


The wacky album to this quirky film starts off with a not-so-wacky remake by Tanishk Bagchi; this time, the song that arrives at Bagchi’s parlour for a makeover is Navi Kamboz-written, Badshah-produced & -composed,  and Navv Inder-sung ‘Wakhra Swag’, a Times Music single from 2015. Now, I’m not much of a sucker for the original either, the repetitive nature of it getting on my nerves, and as such, I was not all that disappointed with the remake, named The Wakhra Song. Foot-tapping, though cliché, beats are all over this remake, while Badshah’s rap is replaced with Raja Kumari’s refreshing rap (sounding as refreshing here as she did in her last Bollywood outing, ‘Husn Parcham’ from ‘Zero’, with Ajay-Atul). Also joining the proceedings is Lisa Mishra with some new lyrics from the female point of view, also penned by Bagchi. The song still suffers from the repetitiveness syndrome though, thanks to the predictable tune of the not-so-impressive-to-start-with original, and the alternating nature of verse, rap, verse, rap, verse.

The other guest composer for this album, Arjuna Harjai, who we are getting to hear after two years (still find myself visiting his songs from ‘Lucknow Central’ sometimes; a pity he didn’t get more work between that and this!) gets to compose a dulcet melody, Kis Raste Hai Jaana, a song that plays a nice and sweet role in the film, and sounds even better with the visuals. The song starts with a calming guitar riff, followed by Surabhi Dashputra (remember ‘O Soniye’ and ‘O Ranjhna’ from ‘Titoo MBA’? Which were also composed by Harjai) in her husky voice, rendering Harjai’s composition impeccably. Arjuna kicks in with the antara, his Arijit-esque yet not-completely Arijit-esque voice providing great contrast to Dashputra’s husky one. His aalaaps towards the end of the antara are beautiful. Harjai’s composition (sounds quite like something out of Jasleen Royal’s studio!) and arrangements are wonderful. The “jaawaan main, jaawaan main” part is the best portion of the song. Especially since Harjai arranges a mini-harmony there with two tracks of Surabhi’s voice, and even throws in his own voice the last time that section plays. Kumaar’s lyrics are the conventional existential crisis lyrics that we often hear in Bollywood, but work in favour of the song.

Background score composer Daniel B. George’s offering Kar Samna is a short piece with Ramayana references that are best understood after watching the film. An ensemble of singers including the composer, a somebody named Amir Khan, Protijyoti Ghosh and Brijesh Shandilya, deliver it to their best ability, considering the little scope they had. Prakhar Vihaan’s lyrics are, as mentioned, Ramayana references that are best left undeciphered until you watch the film. The arrangements by Ujjwal Kashyap and Protijyoti Ghosh are jarring, full of angst, shown by strings (that quintessential horror-movie rapid movement of strings), electric guitars and drums.
That being said, I’m kind of unhappy that some other great background pieces that were included in the film, couldn’t make it to the album. For example, there’s an amazing recreation of Rajesh Roshan’s ‘Tauba Tauba Kya Hoga’ (Mr. Natwarlal) and I hope Saregama has plans of releasing that!

That brings us to lead composer Rachita Arora, with her two songs for the movie. The lead character of Bobby is introduced to us with the boisterous Para Para, a throwback to R.D. Burman’s school of music. The length is off-putting at first, but again, it is one of the songs that seem better on screen than on earphones. Arun Dev Yadav’s part-R.D. Burman, part-Usha Uthup-esque rendition, complete with the frantic breathing patterns as were heard in Burman’s songs, is refreshing. Also, the arrangements (OmDixant) do not leave a sense of datedness, as was heard in songs like, say, ‘Paisa’ (Super 30). What stands out is the saxophone (Bhushan Suryakant Patil). Prakhar Varunendra’s lyrics are a perfect description for the wacky nature of the character Kangana plays in the film.
In her second song, Judgementall Hai Kya, Rachita creates another very experimental sounding track, starting like one of those nursery rhymes you hear in horror movies, in the voice of a child — Nivedita Padmanabhan. Jaspreet Jasz takes the song forward with a rap, followed by a quite cliché EDM drop (programming and arrangements by Nitish Rambhadren and Daniel Chiramal). Varunendra’s lyrics are outrageously wacky, but don’t really hit home. The song could’ve been much better. It just makes me ask ‘Over Experimental Hai Kya?’


An album, best heard while watching the movie; other than ‘Kis Raste Hai Jaana’, I don’t see any track that is palatable enough for me to listen to after even a month. Situational and experimental tracks don’t always make the cut.

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 6.5 + 7.5 + 5 + 6 + 5.5 = 30.5

Album Percentage: 61%

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: Kis Raste Hai Jaana > The Wakhra Song > Para Para > Judgementall Hai Kya > Kar Samna

 

Which is your favourite song from Judgementall Hai Kya? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂