ROCK MODE: OFF 😞 (ROCK ON 2 – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy & Summersalt
♪ Lyrics by: Javed Akhtar & Kit Shangpliang
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company [“Rock On (Revisited)” on T-Series]
♪ Music Released On: 20th September 2016
♪ Movie Releases On: 11th November 2016

Rock On 2 Album Cover

Rock On 2 Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE

To hear “Rock On (Revisited)” on Saavn CLICK HERE

To buy “Rock On (Revisited)” on iTunes CLICK HERE

♪ Listen to “Rock On (Revisited)” on YouTube:


Rock On 2 is an upcoming Bollywood musical drama starring Farhan Akhtar, Shraddha Kapoor, Arjum Rampal, Purab Kohli, Shashank Arora, Prachi Desai and Shahana Goswami. The film has been directed by Shujaat Saudagar, and produced by Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani. The film is a sequel to the 2008 hit film, ‘Rock On!!’ which was like the pioneer for rock music in India, giving a whole new genre for the nation to like, love and perform for themselves. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy had given a brilliant soundtrack for that movie, and after that rock became an integral part of Bollywood music as well. However, times have changed, and now, after eight years, the rock scene in India has changed a lot! What Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy did in ‘Rock On!!’ now seems very ordinary (in that rock has evolved over the years) and now many composers have started using rock as a way of conveying both angst and fun, in almost all movies. Now, in 2016, the sequel to that movie is releasing, and the trio yet again, have to live up to expectations, but not necessarily live up to the standards of the first album (because rock has changed!) Though comparisons will definitely take place, I will try my best not to, because of the time that has lapsed, and also, because of the change of director for the second film. (The first one being directed by Abhishek Kapoor). Since Shraddha Kapoor and Farhan Akhtar are the female and male leads, it goes without saying that they’re going to sing songs in the album, and hopefully, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy use their limited abilities to bring out the best in both! 🙂 After that epic album to ‘Mirzya’, I’m kinda sure this one will sound less impressive, but you really cant blame the trio, because the genres are miles apart! Also, there is one song where Meghalayan band Summersalt collaborates with the trio, which is the seventh song of the album. So let’s see whether this album rocks on or not! 😛


1. Jaago
Singers ~ Farhan Akhtar & Siddharth Mahadevan

Sure enough, the album starts off with a song sung by none other than Farhan Akhtar, the lead actor of the movie, and lead singer of the Magik band (the band in the movie, in case anyone forgot). The song kicks off with a very groovy, and catchy rock guitar riff, and Farhan’s voice takes over to start off the melody of the song. The composition is quite bland, however. The mukhda is very low-key, and doesn’t scream in your face, “Hey, I’m a rock song, so you better cringe!” I liked that. Even the hookline is very catchy, and especially that line before the hookline which goes, “Sab jaan jaaye tumko…” is very catchy, and I like the way they drop down the scales one by one, in that line. Though the hookline has the singers scream in your ears, you end up liking it, because it is done very well, just like a professional rock song. It is the antaras, that cause the problem in the song. Well, at least the first antara is fine, it is just a repetition of the mukhda. However, once the second antara arrives, you can’t help but notice how long the song has been stretched, and on top of that, the quite sublime composition of this antara doesn’t help. It just gets you wanting the song to end soon, which i believe shouldn’t happen at all in a rock song! The composers do many great tricks with the arrangements though. The vibrant guitars are the main attraction of the song, especially that aforementioned riff. It plays throughout the song, and really helps in keeping you glued to the song. The drums (Jai Row Kavi) wonderfully supplement the guitars, and take the okay-ish melody to a different level. The interludes are full of great electric guitar solos, especially the second interlude, where the guitar first does a very awesome solo, and after that is broken down, making a sound like a machine gun does in video games. 😛 (I didn’t know how to describe that!) That part is electrifying! The vocals by Farhan are surprisingly full of zest, but (obviously because of the high notes) Siddharth has to give him a little help (which is okay with him, as long as it is something to do with screaming, that too, in perfect tune!) with the hookline, and Siddharth just rocks the hookline. Farhan doesn’t sound too husky in the song, and that’s a pleasant surprise. Javed Akhtar has written a good song about standing up to any wrongdoings and standing up for our rights. So, this song is two-in-one: entertainment plus awareness campaign! A good opener for the album, but if only the composition were a bit more well-polished, the song would’ve been awesome!

 

2. Udja Re
Singer ~ Shraddha Kapoor, Additional Vocals ~ Shankar Mahadevan

Shraddha, as expected, gets her first song for the album right away, and the song starts off with an entrancing and weird semiclassical piece, with Shankar (in a very chipmunkish, nasal voice that is obviously tweaked) singing a very nice aalaap. The composition starts off very mildly, with a quite ordinary mukhda, which is thankfully graced by Shankar’s weird nasal voice, which serves a great attraction, seriously! The composition only picks up in the midst of the mukhda, when Shraddha starts to sing the “Yeh jeena bhi socho koi jeena Hai..” verse. And then she sings the hookline in a very low scale, and that’s when you start loving the composition, which then goes nowhere but uphill. Shraddha repeats the hookline in a high scale, and that’s when the rock guitars and drums start off too, and from that moment onwards, the song is just energizing and catchy. However, it takes like two minutes to get to that part. Nevertheless, the wait is really worth it. The antara comes three and a half minutes after the song starts, and it is quite angsty, and very well-composed, and just as well-rendered by Shraddha. Overall, the composition is catchy and memorable, if not fast to start off. The arrangements by the trio are beautiful yet again. The guitars and drums (Jai Row Kavi) as always provide the perfect background to the song, while Shankar’s AALAAPS provide a nice semiclassical and also alien touch to the song. The drums are really energetic and energizing, and are enough to give you music to a nice morning workout. Shraddha’s singing, be it the miracle of some autotune or natural, is marvelous. She hits every note with perfection, and doesn’t falteer at any step, as I thought she would. (Like she did in ‘Sab Tera’ from ‘Baaghi’ where she was quite too high-pitched). Javed Akhtar’s lyrics are good here too, and motivational. A show-stopper of a song, mostly because of the arrangements and vocals, while the composition yet again, falls a bit flat. Nevertheless this one is a #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. You Know What I Mean
Singer ~ Farhan Akhtar

A very happy-go-lucky guitar riff starts off the next song, which instantly reminds you of ‘Socha Hai’ from the first movie. The composition here too, is quite bland, though being so upbeat. The mukhda repeats twice in the song, while the hookline is just plain said, not sung. The antara is better than the mukhda, in that it has a more mellifluous composition. The arrangements are spunky, led by guitars and drums (Aatur Soni) again, and with the 2008 style of rock all around them. Theres not much more to talk about the composition and arrangements, because they are quite ordinary! In the interludes, however, there’s the usual nice rock guitar solos, that still sound impressive (that’s just because this is just the third song in the album) :p The hook where the backing vocalists sing “Oh-ohhh” sounds very clichéd, and also outdated. Farhan’s voice doesn’t help to elevate the pallidness of the song, because here, it is husky and very tedious to hear. Thankfully, the makers have kept the song short. Javed Akhtar’s lyrics are so conversational, that it seems awkward at a point. When you experience déjà vu in such a youthful song, it means things are wrong, because the song is so plain!… You know what I mean! 😉

 

4. Manzar Naya
Singer ~ Farhan Akhtar

Here comes Farhan yet again, with another song, this time, a dulcet romantic melody. The composition is very pleasant and breezy — something that normal people in the real world (not characters in Bollywood) would compose and sing impromptu. The pleasantness of the composition actually works for it this time, and the trio churns out a very plain, simple song that touches your heart. The mukhda hooks you in all its simplicity, while the hookline very nicely blends in with the song, though reminding you of a lot of other such songs. The antara has quite some high notes, which, surprisingly, Farhan manages to touch rather smoothly. At the end, the mukhda repeats, and the song ends just as calmly as it had started. Talking about the arrangements, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy have very beautifully employed a guitar riff that plays throughout the song, and is the USP of the song! (Do they need a riff to do that for them every time!? This is getting quite repetitive, but still wonderful!) But again, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy are the best at those small riffs, be it vocal riffs or guitar riffs or wonderful percussion riffs. Speaking of percussion, the wonderful percussion (Anupam Deghatak) of shakers in this song brings that nice soothing quality to the track. The whistle in the interlude, instantly reminded me of that tune from ‘Teen Gawah Hain Ishq Ke’ (Mirzya), but then it dissipated and changed paths smartly and quickly. Backing vocals are beautifully placed in the antara, and the second mukhda. A female voice that seems to have gotten lost in the song suddenly appears somewhere towards the end, and that was quite weird, because it didn’t appear anywhere else before or after. Stray voice unleashed!! The vocals by Farhan are husky and faltery here too, but nevertheless, perfect for this type of song, which needed a faltering voice, as it was supposed to emulate normal people, and not Bollywood characters. 😛 Jokes apart, Farhan sounded good here, and the high notes in the antara particularly sounded well polished. Javed Akhtar’s lyrics are just as simple and normal as anything else in the song. Pleasing, calm and above all, normal! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

5. Tere Mere Dil
Singer ~ Shraddha Kapoor

So after three songs by Farhan and one by Shraddha, one more song by Shraddha pops up on the album, and this one is just pure bliss. The “Tu Tu Tu Ru Ru Ru” vocal loop wonderfully opens the song up, and likewise, this is the USP of this song, and Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy once again rely on this loop to carry the song. The mukhda is very well-composed, and oh-so-melodious. Technically the title of the song is in the mukhda, while the hookline is different — “Saari Jo kahaaniyaan hain..” and both the a and the hookline sound great in their own place. The hookline takes the song to a high, from where it never drops down. The whole magic of the composition is just so magical and entrancing, and it is the only song on the album which instantly reached out and hooked me. The ANTARA is also very beautiful, with a great assemblage of notes that complement the hookline and the entire song very well. So, the trio scores full marks with the melody of this song, but they still resort to the vocal loop to carry it forward.. Why!! Anyway, the arrangements are beautiful. A wonderful sarod helps Shraddha to make the song sound even more magical, playing the tune of her vocal loop itself. The rock plays a very little role in this song, though I guess the digital beats in the hookline are supposed to resemble the rock sound. However, the electric sarod replaces the guitar really well. The whole song has a similar sound to that of ‘Udja Re’ and also ‘Tumhari Meri Baatein’ from the first film — entrancing and mystical. Shraddha’s vocals are mystifying as well, and here, though it is evident that she has been autotuned, the whole thing just appeals nevertheless. The programming does justice to her rendition, and the trio has spun magic with their technical touches. Javed Akhtar, yet again, writes a good song, this time with a more melancholic feel to it. ‘Tumhari Meri Baatein’s equivalent fares far better than ‘Socha Hai’s equivalent. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy bring a quite otherworldly feel to this one! Mystical! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

6. Woh Jahaan
Singers ~ Farhan Akhtar & Shraddha Kapoor

So here comes the long-awaited duet between the two lead singers. Now, even though these two have sung enough songs on the album already, I am not feeling any tedium, because the film actually calls for it.. So we can’t really complain. At least the lead actress isn’t Tulsi Kumar, and the lead actor isn’t Abhijeet. This time too, the composition is very mystical, and a kind of melancholia surrounds the whole song, but not the kind of tedious melancholia that gets you bored right away. This time, the melancholia actually works. The mukhda sees Shraddha start off the song, on a beautiful note, with the trio’s low notes working nicely to attract your attention. However, it is only when the hookline arrives, that you actually start getting the hang of the song and grooving to it. This time, the trio doesn’t rely on any instrumental piece to carry forward the song, and this one has pure melody taking it forward. The hookline has a mind-blowing composition. As Farhan takes over with the second stanza, which has the same composition as the first, you start drifting away a bit from the song. His portions aren’t as interesting as Shraddha’s and his voice (in this song) doesn’t really have that capacity to keep listeners listening. His part starts off the same way that Shraddha’s does, but then takes a different turn, as the tune changes as he progresses towards the hookline. After that, it is merely an instrumental piece to listen to, which ends the song on a high. More about that later. The arrangements are impressive in this song. A wonderful sarod (Soumik Dutta) takes centre-stage here too, while the rock elements keep entrancing you. The guitars are impressive as always (here taking a number of impressive variations), while the drums (Darshan Doshi) are just as intriguing. The interlude between Shraddha’s and Farhan’s stanzas, has that wonderful sarod piece, accompanied by piano, as well as a nice shaayari by Shraddha. The piano accompanies the singers well in the stanzas, and then hands over things to the rock instruments. At the end, as I said before, there is a wonderful instrumental piece which just keeps you hooked. There is another wonderful electric guitar solo there, which makes sure you don’t go anywhere. The backing chorus with their chants nicely helps the instrumental piece get more interesting, and it ends with a striking guitar strum. Javed Akhtar’s lyrics are at their philosophical best, and he really weaves up a thought-invoking poem. Another mystical composition, which unfortunately gets highly tedious in the middle. Arrangements propel the listener through the tedium.

 

7. Hoi Kiw / Chalo Chalo
Singers ~ Usha Uthup, Kit Shangpliang & Pynsuklin Syiemiong, Co-Composers ~ Summersalt, Khasi Lyrics by ~ Kit Shangpliang

The next song finally sees some other singers taking the mic. And who else it is but the bold-voiced Usha Uthup? Along with a North-East Indian band called Summersalt, two of whose members accompany Usha on the vocals front. The composition for this one is quite fun and upbeat, but again, just as ‘You Know What I Mean’, I couldn’t quite catch hold of it. It might sound stupid, but I felt that the composition was just too typical, and reminded me of some European folk song. I found nothing in the composition that was hooking in any sense, and the hookline seemed very passable. The Khasi portions were fun to hear, but then it is not something I would hear again and again, either. The vocals by Usha Uthup seemed overshadowed by the Khasi band, whose lead male singer, Kit Shangpliang really excelled in the vocals. Usha seemed sidelined like a side attraction in the song, while the female Khasi singer barely had much of a scope to open up. The arrangements were pleasant, with the folksy duitara (Adorbha C. Shangpliang) sounding very nice and groovy. The rock arrangements in this song were quite similar to those in ‘You Know What I Mean’, and I found it quite boring. The Hindi lyrics were good, and depict a very free nature, while it was fun to hear the Khasi lyrics and not understand them. Very mixed feelings about this song…

 

8. Ishq Mastana
Singers ~ Digvijay Singh Pariyar & Shankar Mahadevan

This next song seems like such a misfit in this album.. But I’m still gonna review it as if I am a robot who can’t really make that out. The composition seems like a song that just ran away from the ‘Mirzya’ album and made a home for itself in this album — maybe a rejected song that was supposed to be there before ‘Hota Hai’. 😛 Or maybe an unused song that was lying around since the days of ‘Mission Kashmir’. The angsty feel in the song makes me feel this song isn’t going to be one that the band in the movie performs, but it might be a background song, which plays at a critical point in the storyline. The composition is quite interesting, a typical Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy Punjabi folk composition, which has a very catchy hookline. The rest of the composition is quite low-key and ordinary, something that didn’t really compel me to listen to it over and over again. The arrangements are fantastic here as well (tired of saying this so many times!) The keyboard (Gulraj Singh) which very professionally tries to imitate the tumbi, is the USP of this song, and it does a good job too. The rock element, though, is surprisingly the best part of this folk misfit. The rock guitars (played here by Ehsaan Noorani) and drums (Aatur Soni) always go well with a nice Qawwali-esque folk composition, and that is evident here too. The bass (Dibyajyoti Nath) really stands out here, which it didn’t in the previous songs. The percussions (Anupam Deghatak), mainly tabla, stand out well, but sound very clichéd and heavy. The dhols (Hanif Dafrani & Aslam Dafrani), which seem to be remnants of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s ‘Hulla Re’ (2 States), really do a great job in catching the listener’s attention. Meanwhile the dholaks (Prasad Malandkar) fail to reach out in the hard-hitting rock. The vocals are amazing too, with Digvijay Singh (the one from ‘Jaago Mohan Pyaare’ from ‘Katti Batti’) overshadowing Shankar! His voice is simply magical! However, Shankar shows his finesse in the high notes and aalaaps. Javed Akhtar’s lyrics are not excellent, but they’re good here. A song that doesn’t fit into the album, but even if I judge it without knowing that, a song with a very underwhelming composition for a Punjabi folk song! The only great thing here is the arrangements, AGAIN!

 

♪ Extra Song – released by T-Series

9. Rock On (Revisited)
Singers ~ Farhan Akhtar & Shraddha Kapoor

Since the first album was on the T-Series music label, of course T-Series retains the rights for the remake to the title song, and so this track released separately later on. This could well have been the first promotional song of the album, but the makers chose ‘Jaago’ instead. On a whole, the overall sound of both the songs is the same, and the electric guitar riff that is the USP of the original song, gets a makeover here. It was broken down like staccato in the original song, whereas here, it is a complete, flowing guitar piece. I liked the change, it sounds fresh. The new composition is good too, especially the mukhda, which instantly drew me into the song. The hookline is already a favourite of the nation, and I can’t really comment anything else on that, as it is wonderful. The antara is beautifully composed as well, and continues the original hookline, not to mention supports it, well. The arrangements are, as in the rest of the album, electrifying. The electric guitars and drums (Darshan Doshi) yet again, provide the awesome rock feel to the song, without making it too boring. Again, a nice guitar solo graces the interlude. The vocals though, is where the song could’ve been a bit (a lot???) better. Farhan sings well, and I can’t really say much since he sang the original song, but I couldn’t help feeling that after the “Zindagi milegi na dobaraaa”, he sounds as of a ghost has suddenly possessed him or he is suffering from a sudden chill. I don’t know..! Shraddha has sung her parts very flatly, and it could’ve been way better. Well, yes, it kind of brought the raw feel to the song, but I would’ve enjoyed it if it were technically right as well. Javed Akhtar’s lyrics suit the youthful craze of the song, and will do well. A good revamp of the title song, and I really can’t expect more than this for this remake, so it is a #5StarHotelSong!!


Rock On 2 is a very underwhelming album. I started listening to it with a lot of hopes, thinking Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy would repeat the magic of the first album, and also because of their recent release, ‘Mirzya’, which was beauuuutiful. However, the trio seems to have delivered some quite stale songs. When an album I expected so much out of, disappoints in this way, I start doubting myself. 😬 The songs really fail to strike that chord, barring a few of them. The others rely on gags like a repeating guitar riff to propel them forwards. On a brighter note, a thing I noticed about the album is how Shraddha’s songs (except the title track) are mostly the mellow, sobre and melancholic types, while Farhan’s are the upbeat ones. Maybe it has something to do with Shraddha’s character in the movie, who isn’t allowed to explore herself as a musician owing to her parents’ restrictions. But I noticed that and found it worthy to be pointed out. Also noticed that Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy seem to be struggling with modern-day and normal-life-movies albums after their comeback. ‘2 States’ and ‘Dil Dhadakne Do’ being an exception, their other albums for rom-coms and other urban-themed movies have been underwhelming, like ‘Katti Batti’, ‘One By Two’, and ‘Ghayal Once Again’, and now this. On the other hand, they composed awesome music for period films and films with a different theme. So I guess that that has become their weak point over the years. Anyway, when such a talented trio disappoints you can’t really do anything (because you know it is not going to happen again and again) but wait for their next album in the hope of it being better than the last! Rock mode is definitely ‘off’ for this one!

 

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: Tere Mere Dil > Udja Re > Manzar Naya > Rock On (Revisited) > Jaago > Woh Jahaan > Ishq Mastana > Hoi Kiw / Chalo Chalo > You Know What I Mean

 

Which is your favourite song from Rock On 2? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂

 

Next “dish”: Tum Bin 2, Chefs: Ankit Tiwari & Nikhil-Vinay 

Advertisements

EPIC AND LEGENDARY!! COME FALL IN LOVE.. WITH THIS ALBUM!! (MIRZYA: DARE TO LOVE – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
♪ Lyrics by: Gulzar
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 8th September 2016
♪ Movie Released On: 7th October 2016

Mirzya Album Cover

Mirzya Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Mirzya – Dare To Love is an upcoming Bollywood romantic period drama, directed by the famous Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, and produced by Rohit Khattar, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, P.S. Bharathi and Rajiv Tandon, and Cinestaan Film Company. The film stars new talents Harshvardhan Kapoor (Anil Kapoor’s son) and Saiyami Kher (Tanvi Azmi’s niece). The film is inspired from the famous Punjabi folklore of “Mirza-Sahibaan”. Well, after great movies like ‘Rang De Basanti’, ‘Delhi-6’ and ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’, I’m sure Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra has put in more than his best for this ambitious film, and I was hoping this magnum opus worked out well; sad that it didn’t! Meanwhile, we got to enjoy the music of the film, and whether the film works or not, we are always here to enjoy the music, which is expected to be great, just like all of Rakeysh’s other film’s music was. Seeing how successful his decision of roping in the most successful musical trio of Bollywood, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, turned out in his last outing ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’, Rakeysh ropes them in for this ambitious project as well. But this time, he changes his usual lyricist Prasoon Joshi, and ropes in the mastermind Gulzar, who had also worked with him on his first film ‘Aks’. Gulzar was the perfect choice when it comes to a movie like this; clearly, a theme-based movie, which will need songs strictly following its narrative. Another point I would like to note is that Daler Mehndi has scored the background music of the film, and six of the fifteen tracks in the album are his background vocal tracks — less than a minute long, and nothing that can be described individually, so I would advise you to hear them while watching the movie if you don’t like such tracks. First of all, let’s see how Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s nine tracks constituting the actual reviewable part of the album fares! Hopefully, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy shoot the arrows right on the bullseye!


1. Mirzya
Singers ~ Daler Mehndi, Sain Zahoor, Akhtar Chanal, Jyoti Nooran & Sultana Nooran, Chorus ~ Shankar Mahadevan, The Salvation Singers, Nikita Deshpande & Sapna Pathak

The title track arrives first on the album, and it is something that will leave you awestruck by the end of it. It is Pakistani folk singer Saieen Zahoor (spelled by T-Series as Sain) who gets to open the track, and his voice is very representative of the setting and locale of the film — a rural area. It is fascinating things such as this that constitute the best moments of the song. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy seem to have taken great efforts in making this one what it is. The song is a great showcase of beautiful folksy rhythms and melodies, and I’ve never seen the north-western folk music represented in such a beautiful way in films recently (Thank you, Badshah and Yo Yo Honey Singh!) All the singers associated with this song are natives of that region, but surprisingly, the music-makers themselves, aren’t! What a magnificently remarkable work they’ve done! The composition has many layers, tones and undertones. At first listen, it sounds like a very happy-go-lucky folk song, until you start noticing the sinister and emotional undertones too! The song starts with Saieen’s folksy voice singing a verse that hookss you instantly, and then his wonderful “Mirzyaaaaa hoo-ohhh” starts off the actual song. Daler Mehndi steps in, with all his energy focused onto the song, bringing out a brilliant performance. His famous high notes don’t fail to fascinate here either. The hookline is genius at its peak. The mukhda has Daler Mehndi singing an awesome high-pitched portion, and along with Saieen, he carries it out with impeccable finesse. But the high point a of the composition is whenever Daler sings “Oh mirzyaaaa“. The “Gol gol ghume zameen…” line, too, has been composed beautifully. The antara is led by the Nooran Sisters, and their part is very cuteand likable. Akhtar Chanal is in there somewhere, not getting much scope to shine individually, but I’m sure his voice is making a difference somewhere or the other. The backing vocals are beautiful, and their roles are so important in making the song what it is. Towards the end, they sing a wonderful, dreamy portion that goes like “Sunn teri oh dastaan re mirzya“, and it is so good!! The Salvation Singers’ intermittent vocals in between the lines of the song, are too good to miss. This is one of those songs where the backing chorus plays a very important role. Coming to the arrangements by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, they are very energetic and catchy. The rhythms by Taufiq Qureshi instantly catch your attention, and you can’t forget the rhythm on which the song is composed. The dhadd plays throughout the song, infusing the Punjabi touch to it, while the earthy string instruments are something you don’t get to hear everyday. Towards the end Naveen Kumar’s BRILLIANT flutes and pungis play a very upbeat folksy piece which makes you smile. At the end of the song, you just can’t help but think how skillfully Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy have crafted the music and composition for this song. Gulzar’s lyrics are clearly folk lyrics out of which we can understand some things here and there, and so it might appeal to less people, but I loved whatever I could discern! The way he has employed a story-telling manner to put forth the legend of Mirzya, is commendable. A title track that is as legendary as the legend it is supposed to be describing! Something as fascinating as this can simply not go unnoticed or unappreciated!! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

2. Teen Gawah Hain Ishq Ke
Singers ~ Siddharth Mahadevan & Sain Zahoor, Chorus ~ The Salvation Singers & Loy Mendonsa

The sound of a woodwind opens up the next song and you can easily understand that this one is going to be a fresh romantic song with a folksy aura to it. Sure enough, that is just what you get. It is Saieen Zahoor again, who gets to start the sing off with a very enchanting couplet, that made me get goosebumps. And what follows is pure bliss. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy get it right with the composition, a breezy and enjoyable one which is as fresh as you can imagine. Of course, the trio has excelled in making these songs, but this one seems to top them all. The composition is a breeze of fresh air. After Saieen’s couplet, Siddharth sings a wonderful vocal rhythm which goes ‘Tannanaa Nannanaa” and the wonderful Salvation Singers accompany him in the “Hoo-oh-ohh“. The mukhda is something that instantly gets you hooked. The hookline is entrancing, if not anything else. The low notes of the mukhda make you ready for a very soft and quiet song which stays in the low notes for the whole time, but the antara is an exception, where the trio expertly let the composition traverse into high notes, and it sounds equally tranquil. Towards the end, Saieen does a wonderful closing aalaap, which is worth looking out for! The Salvation Singers and Loy do a wonderful job in supporting Siddharth, who is clearly at his best here. The man usually gets high-pitched, high-energy, dynamic songs where he is forced to yell (though it sounds good, nothing against that!) but this seems to be the very first song where he has actually been able to sing in a normal pitch, voice and without risking his throat! 😀 And the result? It is a very melodious, mellifluous voice that I couldn’t ever imagine Siddharth Mahadevan producing! Leave it up to Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy to discover new singing styles in singers, even if the singer is the son of the first third of the trio. 😀 It is the arrangements that add the necessary charm to the song. With those guitar riffs playing throughout the song, it is impossible to not get lost in the music! It is Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s trademark, those riffs! In each song they have some or the other musical loop, be it that vocal one in ‘Mera Yaar’ (Bhaag Milkha Bhaag) or the digital one in ‘Gallan Goodiyan’ (Dil Dhadakne Do) which starts off the song. Along with those guitars, the trio has a wonderful folk percussion instrument called the dimdi (played by Abhay Rumde) which helps to get the folksy feel. There are other sounds like chinks on glass, which must be the genius of Taufiq Qureshi at work. 😀 It is the backing chorus made up of the Salvation Singers and Lot that make the song as breezy as it is. Last but definitely not the least, Gulzar’s lyrics come into picture. What a brilliant hookline he has written! “Teen gawah hain ishq ke, ikk rab hai, ikk tu, aur main!” (There are there witnesses of love, one is God, and you, and me!) I don’t know where he gets such ideas from, but much to our enjoyment, he gets them anyway! 😀 Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy ace this one, and deliver what must be the breeziest love song I’ve heard in a while! Kudos to Siddharth Mahadevan for showing this side of him! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Chakora
Singers ~ Mame Khan, Suchismita Das & Akhtar Chanal, Chorus ~ Shankar Mahadevan & Suchismita Das

You would be a nasty, ugly little liar, if you said that you weren’t waiting for some or the other kind of a dance track in this movie. When it’s a folk-themed movie, based in Rajasthan, and when you have composers like Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy on board, wouldn’t you be eager to hear a dance song? Yes you would, at least I think you would. And so, the next song presents itself as a folksy dance track. Of course, there can’t be a straightforward dance track when it comes to Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy either! They have to twist it some way or the other. And so what do they do? They conveniently infuse techno beats into the Rajasthani folksy song. And the result is stupendous!! The composition has the very much necessary folk touch, and calls out to you right away. The mukhda starts with a very enticing “Arey Haalaaaaaa” by Mame Khan, a contemporary folk artist who has sung in Coke Studio Season 2 for Amit Trivedi, indicating that a folksy melody is following. The mukhda is very catchy, and both Mame Khan and Shuchismita Das sing wonderfully to make it sound entrancing. The hookline, “Lipat lipat chal gayo re dola” is sooooo good! The trio has made up a very appealing melody for that. The antara is made up of many twists and turns, all of which just make the song sound even more beautiful. With one singer singing half a line, which is later continued by the other singer, this part is definitely not to be missed! The song may be raaga-based, but it really doesn’t seem to be, with the arrangements that the trio has given. A wonderful techno sound has been added to the song, reminiscent of the times when the trio has introduced such songs to Bollywood, and in particular, the entire sound reminded me of ‘Koi Kahe Kehta Rahe’ (Dil Chahta Hai). The other folk instruments play an important role in making the folk aspect of the song stand out — particularly the percussion. The vocals are magnificent, though I do bear a grudge against Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy for having autotuned Mame Khan’s voice! 😦 It sounds good autotuned too, but I feel the folksy aspect would’ve stood out if it had been left as it was. Suchismita sings wonderfully as she always does, but gets little space to be noticed among Mame Khan’s wonderful singing. Akhtar Chanal, once again, is sidelined and I think he’s the person who sings those mystical-sounding chants at the start of the song, which I thought sounded a lot like Gulzar! 😀 Shankar Mahadevan’s backing vocals are amazing, and he leaves no space empty, making sure every second of the song is filled with some sounh or the other! Gulzar’s lyrics are great, here as well, perfectly describing love in a very metaphorical manner. The underlying suggestion that the line “Aasmaan par udey chakora, chaand pakadne jaave, ishq udey jab tez dhaar pe dono pankh kataave” gives, also explains the pain of the two lovers. A fun song, with undertones of emotion and love! Genius stuff from Gulzar, and brought to life very effusively by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Mame Khan & Suchismita Das! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

4. Aave Re Hitchki
Singers ~ Shankar Mahadevan & Mame Khan, Chorus ~ Sapna Pathak, Arsh Mohammed, Rehan Khan, Firoz Khan & Farhan Sabri

When the gratifying sound of the sarangi opens a song, the song more often than every time, turns out to be a very beautiful one. And this one is another song which can be added to that list. The song wonderfully starts off with an enchanting sarangi piece, played by Mame Khan’s troupe. And then the roopak taal sets in to make the ambience more soulful and soothing. It is the first line of the composition itself, that brings out the goosebumps. The tune is so sweet and charming, that you just can’t NOT like it. The way the mukhda is made up of three parts, the first one being the first line, “Nidra mein kisne...”, the second being “Sandesa aayo na chhithiyaa bhijayi…” and the third going on a different scale and tune with “Dhoop mundhere chadh gayo dola..“, is a masterstroke idea. And the hookline, oh!! It is so charming, that you end up falling in love with it by the time it has played twice. There are actually two very wonderful hooklines or refrains in the song — the title of the song being one, and the second being a just as wonderfully composed (in fact, sounding better!) “Talaiyya sookhi, keekhar sookha, bheetar sookha re“. The seamless transition from each line of that hookline, is what makes it so beautiful. The antara traverses very calm notes, that instantly connect with the listener. And towards the end there’s a wonderful bit of the song, which goes “Mann tarse, ghan barse“.. And the way the trio has composed these two words in so many different tunes, also with the tune of the hookline, is such a pleasure to hear! 😀 What can I say about the vocals? Shankar Mahadevan is at his graceful best. The RAAGA-based composition couldn’t be sung better by anyone but him, and I particularly loved how he sings the high notes! The backing chorus effusively sings the hookline, and makes it stand out amazingly. The arrangements are nothing to miss, either! The trio has appointed a number of instruments to help to make the song sound grand. I must bring out the sarangi, (by the Mame Khan Troupe) which has been played the most beautifully throughout the song. One part in the interlude where the hookline’s tune has been played on the sarangi, is just awesome. And then there are the brilliant, BRILLIANT guitars (Neill Mukherjee) which support the composition on every note. The Spanish Guitars in the interlude particularly, are worth hearing a million times! Dholaks (also by the Mame Khan Troupe) are also great. But one of the most intriguing sounds in the song, is Shankar Mahadevan’s flawless “HICHH!” in one of the hooklines, which you really have to watch out for! 🙂 Gulzar’s lyrics are worth a salute, and I can’t really say anything much except that you should go and hear them and also try to decipher them, and when you do, wait for the smile that’ll come on your face! 😀 A masterpiece from Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, fit for repeat listening, and wonderfully bringing out the rajasthani folk part of the movie! #5StatHotelSong!!

 

5. Hota Hai
Singers ~ Jyoti Nooran, Sultana Nooran, Saieen Zahoor, Akhtar Chanal & Daler Mehndi, Chorus ~ The Salvation Singers & Shankar Mahadevan

The angst in the album was missing, until this song comes along in the playlist. The way it starts, you wouldn’t think it would turn into a sinister, dark-sounding, angsty song later on! The Nooran Sisters start off with a very groovy vocal beat, which is basically Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy showing off at how well they compose such groovy vocal loops. This song is the song around which the gist of the story is centered. The line “Chot kahin lag jaati hai par zakhm kahin par hota hai” is the tagline of the film, and Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy wonderfully incorporate it into the song. The way the composition is not delimited by a fixed tune, and is rather flexible, in that the folk singers can be seen at their liberty to sing anything anytime, is just fabulous. I personally loved the way Akhtar Chanal & Saieen Zahoor interrupt throughout the song with weird vocals, that actually bring you to like the song even more. But the song belongs to the Nooran Sisters, who are at their best in bringing a whole different kind of suspense to the song, and vivaciously bring forth the ideas of Gulzar saab. The composition itself is filled with very dark undertones and the dark sound of it all does nothing but attract you. There is a wonderful line in the song sung by Shankar Mahadevan along with the Salvation Singers. And to top it all, at the end, Daler Mehndi comes back with his hard-hitting “Ohhhh mirzyaaaaa” from the title song. The composers have made sure that the composition, despite all of its unconventional-ness, reaches out to the listener and grabs him, not instantly, but a bit more each time. It is the awesome arrangements that give the song half of its greatness. The techno beats and the typical Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy club beats fuse with a mesmerizing folk act by the Nooran Sisters, Saieen and Akhtar. The sarangi (Delshad Khan) in the interlude is just wow. And then there are the khartals (Mame Khan Troupe) which attract your attention. And the harmony between Jyoti and Sultana Nooran is unmatchable! Gulzar’s lyrics are all about how love is deceptive and blah blah, but the way he has portrayed it, is worth listening. Something unconventional, that might not get the desired praise and acclaim, but definitely touched my heart! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

6. Ek Nadi Thi
Singers ~ Jyoti Nooran, Sultana Nooran & K. Mohan, 

This song starts with a wonderful heart-touching aalaap by one of the Nooran Sisters (really can’t distinguish which one!) The real magic though, starts when Mohan Kanan with his very deep voice starts to sing the sweet melody of the song, and it is from this moment that you really start grooving to the song. The beats too, are worth grooving to! The song is arranged on nothing but acoustic guitars and claps and snaps, giving a very homely and minimalistic feel to the entire affair. The composition by the trio is so catchy and absorptive at the same time, that you just can’t forget it once you hear it. The hookline is just something that seems to have come from the composers’ hearts. The antara continues the freshness of the song, and the harmony that the Nooran Sisters create with K. Mohan, who is probably the only lead singer on the album who is not known for folk, is pretty awesome! The high notes touched by the Nooran Sisters and the low notes rendered by Mohan, complement each other very well, despite so much contrast. I can hear Shankar Mahadevan leading the Salvation Singers in the background, and it sounds so beautiful, that sometimes, you will find yourself focusing more on his parts than the parts of the lead singers! I wonder why T-Series hasn’t credited them like they have for the other songs! The arrangements mesmerize you with their simplicity — who has ever heard a song arranged merely on acoustic guitars and claps and snaps, when the song is in an album made for a folksy movie? Well it is allthe work of the mastermind percussionist Taufiq Qureshi! Towards the end, the two entities, Nooran Sisters and K. Mohan, perform a wonderful harmonic interpretation of the hookline, with one of them saying one line and the other following the first, with the classic style of starting right in the middle of the first singer’s line. Gulzar’s words make it known that the nadi (river) that he’s talking about is Sahibaan, and he has woven a metaphorical story around her through the song. Simplicity takes over in this otherwise quite complicated album! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

7. Doli Re Doli
Singers ~ Shankar Mahadevan & Mame Khan

The wonderful opening lines sung by Mame Khan bring an opulent start to the next song, which is a very unconventional bidaai song! The opening lines by Mame Khan sound like the start of a garba, but then stop sounding like one almost at once, and when you get to know, much to your disappointment that the song isn’t a garba, you get excited on knowing that it is, indeed, a soft jazz song! Yes, you read it right! A bidaai song with a jazz backdrop! After Mame’s introduction is over, Loy’s keyboard comes in and steals the show, coupled with a wonderful trumpet (Victor Garcia) that was definitely not anticipated! And while all this magic is happening, Shankar is busy at the mic, singing a tranquilizing aalaap. When the first line of the melody hits you, you can’t believe your ears for a minute, but then your ears decide to digest the fact that the composition is so melodious, and though it has a sad undertone, you can’t help feel your mood lightened up a bit after hearing. The classical-based composition coupled with the emotional soft jazz arrangements consisting of showstopping keyboard solos by Loy, not to mention the drums (out of which the cymbals are played oh so wonderfully! — credits to Kalyan Pathak). The signature melodica played by Shankar himself, is the epitome of classiness in the song. That brings us to the vocals which are by Shankar too, and couldn’t be better! I can’t praise him enough for this song! The way he brilliantly breezes through those aalaaps in the song (they’re almost everywhere — try to locate each and every one of them, as they’re not to be missed!) Gulzar, on the other hand, writes away at a heartrending piece of poetry, which puts forth the sentiments of the bride during bidaai, very well. Lines like “Chaukhat pyaar Jo pair dhare toh, main len den chukayo baabul” (I have repaid all the debts to my parents after I cross the threshold of their house) tell you why Gulzar is such a renowned writer. 🙂 The sweetness of the album reaches a new level with this song. Something that is as unconventional as this, has to be par excellence! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

8. Kaaga
Singer ~ Kaushiki Chakraborty

After all that folk and the jazz of the previous song, you’re really not ready for what awaits you in this song. As soon as it starts playing, an opulent symphony strikes you and you feel as of you’re in some orchestra performance, where one of the stalwarts like Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, Chopin, Haydn and the like. The violins really fill your heart and mind with some pleasing and soothing quality, but also leave you craving for more after it all ends. BUT WAIT!! We haven’t finished yet! I still have to tell you about the start! So, back to the beginning of the song. After that wonderful symphony — which, sadly, T-Series and Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy haven’t given any sort of musician credits for (which is simply not done, okay! You don’t NOT give musician credits for some song I really wanna know the musician credits of! 😦 ) — so yeah, after that symphony, a sweet twinkling sound (xylophone most probably) takes you to the main melody of the song, and who waits for you there? The fantastic classical singer, the majestic Kaushiki Chakraborty. With her each and every note, she manages to take away some fraction of your breath, and that’s why you call it breathtaking! Her AALAAPS are simply amazing, and it is her magnificent vocals that decorate the already magnificent composition and arrangements by the trio. Wonderful use of strings and the flute, makes this song what it is. The brass portions give a very otherworldly feel, and you feel as if you are in outer space. Gulzar’s lyrics are nostalgically refreshing! Something in which Kaushiki, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, and Gulzar, all are at their very best! And special bows to the musicians!!! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

9. Mirzya Theme – Broken Arrows
(Instrumental)

To end the album, we have an instrumental that is bound to get you teary-eyed, to the extent that even if you’re in Shangri-La while listening to it, you will get that inabominable feeling of pain and hurt in your heart. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy yet again bring in the strings — this time the violin, to bring out the emotion in the piece. The trio cleverly takes the backing chorus’ humming tune from ‘Teen Gawah’ and weaves it into a mellow, sombre and emotional piece, which is quite brimful of emotions. The violin does the job in the first half of this piece and in the second half, the relay is seamlessly passed on to the flute, which is the best choice ever! Again, T-Series and the trio haven’t provided any musician credits of any sort, so I take it for granted that they played the instruments themselves. Anyway, it is a beautiful way of the composers and director telling us that all that happiness in the ‘Teen Gawah’ sequence was just illusory, so don’t pay it any attention, because we all know the fate of Mirza and Sahibaan. A track that will play in the back of your head in your free time and try to make you feel like you’re in a movie and your life is depressing, so try to limit that depression to the characters of the movie and listen to the song, to have a wonderful experience! Emotion at its best! 🙂 #5StarHotelSong!!


Mirzya – Dare To Love is an album that really forces you, not dares you, to love it. Nine wonderfully arranged musical pieces with awe-inspiring vocals by attractive rustic voices, coupled with groovy beats from the maestros Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and the vision of a mastermind like Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, makes this album one to die for. The choice of singers is fantastic — Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy gather up a team of folk singers and wonderfully employ them throughout the album. The Nooran Sisters and Saieen Zahoor, particularly, strike gold through this album. The Noorans spectacularly make their presence felt throughout the album. The two Pakistani folk singers, Saieen and Akhtar Channal, though they get less scope, don’t fail to impress you, while Mame Khan and his musician troupe, hailing from the deserts of Rajasthan, amaze you with their rustic vocals. The two very smooth-textured voices on the album, Suchismita Das and Kaushiki Chakraborty, both from West Bengal, do magic in their relatively small roles on the album. K. Mohan and Siddharth Mahadevan, practically the only commercial singers of the new generation on the album, do a splendid job in their respective songs, though the Noorans do overshadow Mohan in his song. Shankar Mahadevan himself spectacularly sings two of the songs, which are two of my favorites from the album too! Not to mention the wonderful harmonies of The Salvation Singers!! Just splendid! 😀 And last but not the least, Daler Mehndi with his splendid baritone voice surpassing all with his rendition of the title song, and his theme tracks that are interspersed throughout the album. A special mention to his voice that goes “Ohhhh mirzyaaaaaaaa” at the end of every television promo of the movie. 😍😍😍😍 When will the goosebumps get to sleep!? Gulzar’s words perfectly make this album a repeat-listen-worthy album, and it is in albums like this that my emotions overflow so much and I rave about the album, not noticing that my “conclusion”, which is supposed to be the shortest part of the review, is just a complete introduction altogether. I guess that the last time I did so was in ‘Bombay Velvet’. So, without further ado, let’s go on to my verdict! This miraculous album will make you fall in love… With itself!

 

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: Why ask!? Why rub salt on my wounds!! 😢😢😡

 

Which is your favourite song from Mirzya – Dare To Love? Please vote for it below!

TEMPORARY KATTI WITH SHANKAR-EHSAAN-LOY!! (KATTI BATTI – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
♪ Lyrics by: Kumaar
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company
♪ Music Released On: 28th August 2015
♪ Movie Released On: 18th September 2015

Katti Batti Album Cover

Katti Batti Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Katti Batti is a Bollywood rom-com film, which starred Imran Khan and Kangana Ranaut in the lead roles. The film was directed by Nikhil Advani, and produced by him along with Siddharth Roy Kapur. Vivan Bhatena also starred in a supporting role in the film. The story is about two people Madhav (Maddy) and Payal, played by Imran and Kangana respectively, who are in love, but a sudden turn of events makes Payal leave Maddy. So the plot of the story goes something like that. Nikhil Advani, who had also directed “Hero” this year, releasing a week before this, now comes back to his forte, that is rom-com. The film flopped inspite of such a great hype; maybe a fault in the storytelling. Anyways, how does that concern me? Let’s talk about the music. The music has been given by Nikhil’s favourites for rom-coms, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. After the success of their album to Zoya Akhtar’s “Dil Dhadakne Do”, I expect them to do exceptionally well in this album. a) because they are awesome at composing for rom-coms — they have been stunning us right from ‘Kal Ho Naa Ho’ and albums like that, and b) because their collaborations with Nikhil, I believe, are always awesome, and should be in the future too! They have composed five songs for the movie, now only to see how much they appeal to me. So, here we go!! 🙂


1. Sarfira
Singers ~ Siddharth Mahadevan & Neeti Mohan, Rap by ~ Qaran Mehta

I worship Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy when it comes to club songs. Here, the album starts off with a similar club song, as they used to give in the past, with full on techno sounds and more techno sounds and even more techno sounds. However, let me confess to you, that this time, I didn’t find anything special in the song at all! Starting with techno sounds that make you go, “Oh, the same typical club beats… Let’s see what comes up ahead.” this song doesn’t have the trio going beyond the usual things that they put in every club song, making it sound pretty stale than the other club songs. Their experimentation power is very high, as we know from other songs, then, I wonder why they didn’t use that power of theirs here! The song starts with techno sounds that sound a lot like they’ve been played on a keyboard, followed by guitar strums which are really energetic and enthusiastic. Neeti’s intermissions saying “Fizool hai” are also good enough to make you feel that something extraordinary just might be around the corner. But when Siddhartha starts to sing, the tune of what he sings, carries a very heavy déjà vu feeling, something we have heard from Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy many a time in the past, and so it doesn’t click right away. What’s more, the mukhda does not even get over, or so it seems, before the hookline starts, very abruptly and it sounds pretty odd, as if the trio was in a hurry to get to it. However, the hookline itself is catchy as far as composition goes. Arrangements are nothing special though. As we progress towards the antara, the composition does get a little interesting, or at least more than the the previous parts. Arrangements, however, stay dull and bland. There comes a point when you start wondering why they didn’t put any arrangements other than the typical EDM, techno beats, just as a small attraction somewhere in the interlude or something. Well, that’s because the interlude is reserved for some new rapper called Qaran Mehta (what’s up with the spelling? Is it just to make it look cool? Because he didn’t rap that good.. It’s really annoying the way he raps) The composition has its shares of interesting and dull moments, whereas the arrangements are ordinary all throughout the song. Vocals by Siddharth and Neeti are good, but just that, nothing more. No variations, no anything. Lyrics by Kumaar though, are worth hearing — they do connect with today’s audience, though they are nothing extraordinary or funny like his other songs. Something which the trio has done so many times, the magic has just worn off now, and results in an unattractive song. Not such an impressive start to the album!

 

2. Sau Aasoon
Singers ~ Shankar Mahadevan & Rasika Shekhar

What I was actually expecting from the trio from the first song in the album, comes a bit late, but it comes better than expected. Better late, than never, right? There’s nothing like a sad, romantic, soft rock number from Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. On top of that when it’s sung by Shankar himself, the expectations are tripled. Even though it’s a soft, sad number when we hear the tune, it takes on a really addictive form when we hear the arrangements, and Shankar’s versatile vocals suit the mellow song. High notes and low ones alike, he sings with great ease, as always. The song starts off with a wonderfully captivating guitar riff, joined a few seconds later by another awesome electric guitar playing beautiful notes. Shankar, when he steps in, deliberately sings out of the regular beat, pretty much like what the trio made Arijit do in ‘Mast Magan’ (2 States). He starts when you least expect it, because the guitar riffs mislead you. But it sounds exceptional when he jumps into the song unexpectedly. The hookline is something that you would feel like hearing over and over again forever. Rasika’s husky voice, though it might be sounding a bit too much autotuned, has this addictive tone to it, which makes anyone fall in love with it. However, in this song, she has two different roles: the humming and once or twice to sing the hookline. The first job she executes very well, but our heavy and husky voice just isn’t cut out for singing the hookline, which I would’ve preferred in Shankar’s husky yet soft voice. The antara has a very sweet and touching tune, including many variations, executed perfectly by Shankar. The backing chorus also supports well in these parts. Towards the ending we witness a beautiful jugalbandi of sorts between Shankar and Rasika, and it ends the song on a marvellous note. Arrangements consist of guitars, both acoustic and electric, sounding really great together in the same song. The drums have been added which increase the addictive nature of the song. To give the song a polished appearance, we have the piano, a misfit in a rock song, but sounding exceptional here particularly! Kumaar’s lyrics, are meaningful here, and again he surprises me with his immensely great ability to write both meaningful and meaningless songs with the same dedication or carelessness respectively. 😂 A complete Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy show from start to end! The song will get you pondering after it’s over and leave a huge impact! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Lip To Lip
Singers ~ Nikhil D’Souza & Ritu Pathak 

Youngsters Nikhil D’Souza and Ritu Pathak (credited wrongly as Phatak :p ) bag the next song, a cute little romantic song revolving around “kissiyaan” (kisses). The main element of this song that enters right from the starting and stays till the end, and because of which you keep listening, is the quirkiness of it. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy try to make a quirky, catchy and youthfully mad song, and succeed with distinction! I mean, the great composers that they are, how would they fail? Nikhil has been employed very effectively and he brings the Westernized flavour into the song, while at the same time, Ritu Pathak brings in the desi flavour and gives the best performance of her career, in my opinion. She keeps aside all the cheapness she brings into every other song and sings this one with all possible naughtiness, but without the cheapness. A time in the song comes when she goes totally nasal into Shamshad Begum mode, and another when, in the interlude, she says “O Sajnaa Veeee” in an unmistakable Richa Sharma voice. In fact, she kind of sounds similar to Richa Sharma throughout the song! Wonderful attempt! Nikhil is his usual casual, carefree a sounding self, and his fresh voice is always a pleasure to hear, unless the composition isn’t interesting. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s composition took no time at all to grow on me, and in no time, I found myself humming the tune many times! The tune of the line “Main yaaaar tenu miss kardi, tenu yadaan vich kiss kardi…” is just too cutely addictive! The arrangements, too are unmatchable! A beautiful vocal rhythm starts off the song and the same rhythm forms the pillars for the song even later on in it. Acoustic guitars, saxophone, some quirky Amit Trivedish sounds, work together to make it a wonderful listening experience. Drums and some Arabic percussion also make an appearance later on in the song. Kumaar uses some gimmicky terms and his Hinglish lyrics are tough to forget, but very easy to remember. They have an instant youth connect and may be the reason why this song worked so much! In short, the song is something you must not miss, if you’re looking for something new, fresh, breezy et al!! Extra marks for the way Ritu Pathak has been made to sing!! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

4. Ove Janiya / Ove Jaaniye (Reprise)
Singers ~ Mohan Kannan / Sayani Palit

Yes, I know. I’ve written the spelling of the reprise version differently right? :p Contact Zee Music Company for more details. I myself have no idea why it’s named like that! 😀 Anyways, after hearing the song, all of Zee’s mistakes are forgiven. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy present a soft, slow and calm, sad number sung beautifully by Mohan Kannan. When he last worked with them for ‘Chaandaniya’ (2 States), it resulted in an awesome sad song, with a groove to it that was hard to forget! This time, the song has no catchy groove as such, but it is the composition, which hooks you…if not instantly, then at least after two or three listens. The arrangements, though as minimal as possible, have the capability to soothe you down, and the song is just as effective as a lullaby to lull you to sleep, and I mean that in a positive way. First of all, mild piano notes start off the song, and an African-style percussion instrument gives the rhythm along with guitars and shakers and even the cymbals of drums, but all used in such a tranquil manner, that you wouldn’t believe it. Mohan renders the composition beautifully, and his voice just increases the serenity of the song manifold. His sargam portion in the first interlude stole my breath away. Otherwise too, he is spot-on with his rendition. Kumaar has written meaningful lyrics again, in Punjabi, romantic and emotional at the same time. The words have a unique ring to them, thanks to the trio’s unusually soft but beautiful composition. The reprise sees classical singer Sayani Palit come behind the mic, also making her Bollywood debut. Her version wasn’t as hooking as Mohan’s to me, but that would vary from person to person. Of course, her technicalities in singing the song are more perfect than Mohan, but it makes her version sound more difficult to connect with and less youthful and less contemporary than Mohan’s. This version has been sung on a backdrop of only very soft piano, and nothing else at all! Those piano arrangements are wonders to behold and the trio deserves a huge applause for them. If only somebody whose voice had more weight, maybe Kavita Seth or Rekha Bhardwaj had sung this version, it would have done way better. Or, if they had to retain Sayani, a nice clasica backdrop would’ve been more than enough to make me delighted, complete with tablas and sitar and the likes. The original is beyond all expectations, while the reprise falls just below them! Anyhow, both versions have scintillating arrangements, and lyrics, and the composition can’t be missed at any cost!! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

5. Jaago Mohan Pyaare
Singers ~ Siddharth Basrur, Digvijay Singh Pariyar, Raman Mahadevan & Rasika Shekhar

To conclude the album, we have something very unusual. Taking a glimpse at its name, you would think it is some bhajan, but press the play button and your ears seem to be playing tricks on you. It is a high-energy rock song, with a little folkish touch to it, sung with immense energy and dynamics by four singers with heavy voices. Well, I have to admit, the composition isn’t bad, and while it plays, you will enjoy it to the utmost, but the drawback is that, after it gets over, you will practically forget it. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy try to bring that one crazy song that each of their albums nowadays have, but they do not quite surpass the bar that they themselves have raised to a very high level with the very recent ‘Gallan Goodiyaan’ (Dil Dhadakne Do). Siddharth Basrur, with his Vishal Dadlani-like voice, gets a bit too loud at times, but overall does good. Raman Mahadevan, who was a Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy regular atone particular time, and Digvijay Singh Pariyar, newcomer, and whose voice falls between that of Sanam Puri and Divya Kumar, do well too. The sole female singer, Rasika Shekhar, getting her second song in the album, sounds perfect here, contrary to being a misfit in ‘Sau Aasoon’. Arrangements are good but lack anything extraordinary. A fusion of rock and Punjabi folk, has been heard before, and hearing the way they have been used here, definitely doesn’t make it stand out as a composition by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. The tumbi part particularly sounds very ordinary. The rock guitars and drums sound better and if the song would have been purely rock, I wouldn’t have minded, but probably the script called for a Punjabi twist. If so, the trio had the capacity to work wonders with that! Kumaar, however, saves the trio by writing interesting lyrics, a boys vs. girls faceoff. As I said, the composition is great, but it has no repeat value. I am only hearing it now, because I didn’t have time when it released. :p I might be the only person, other than Imran Khan, Kangana Ranaut and everyone else associated with the film, who must be hearing it now! Not bad, but not excellent like the trio usually does! Vocals are good, so is the composition, and so are arrangements. But only the lyrics are great!


Katti Batti definitely doesn’t score among Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s best works, having two downright average songs (above average if compared to other composers’ work at present) and the rest awesome. There used to be a time when each and every song in an S-E-L album used to be stellar, enticing and magical in its own way. Since their mainstream comeback with ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’ in 2013, this has definitely got to be their most underwhelming album. And yeah, that’s counting the ‘One By Two’ album and their two songs in ‘Darr @ The Mall’! The others, ‘2 States’, ‘Kill/Dil’ and ‘Dil Dhadakne Do’ had very few of the dull moments and compared to that, this one has too many!! And I’m not saying this is a bad album — not at all, because it is good in its own way. Just that it’s not the usual awesomeness that is expected from Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. That said, I’m on a temporary ‘katti’ with Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy henceforth, till their next Bollywood album ‘Ghayal Once Again’ releases, from which I’ll be keeping immense hopes nevertheless! 😁

P.S. I’m already ‘batti’ with them because of their stellar soundtrack to Marathi movie ‘Katyar Kaljat Ghusali’!

 

Final Rating for This Album: सा < रे < ग < म < प <  < नी < सां

Note: The letter which is underlined is the final rating.

Recommended Listening Order: Ove Janiya > Lip To Lip > Sau Aasoon > Ove Jaaniye (Reprise) > Jaago Mohan Pyaare > Sarfira

 

Which is your favourite song from Katti Batti? Please vote for it below! 🙂

 

DILBAR JAANI, SUN LE GAANE GOODIYAAN!!! (DIL DHADAKNE DO – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
♪ Lyrics by: Javed Akhtar
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 3rd May 2015
♪ Movie Releases On: 5th June 2015

Dil Dhadakne Do Album Cover

Dil Dhadakne Do Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Dil Dhadakne Do is an upcoming Bollywood comedy drama film directed by Zoya Akhtar, and produced by Ritesh Sidhwani and Farhan Akhtar. When Zoya is the director, you can rest assured that there would be an ensemble cast associated with the film, and that the film is going to showcase a slice-of-life, something with which you can relate to. This film stars Ranveer Singh, Priyanka Chopra, Farhan Akhtar, Anushka Sharma, Anil Kapoor, Shefali Shah and Rahul Bose. Zoya continues her trend of naming her movies after songs from her previous movie. This time she takes inspiration from the song “Dil Dhadakne Do” from her previous film, “Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara”. The film revolves around a dysfunctional Punjabi family, and how they set out on a cruise trip, and their adventures along the way. Ranveer and Priyanka play siblings, while Anushka plays Ranveer’s love interest, and Anil & Shefali play Priyanka & Ranveer’s parents. Farhan plays a friend of Priyanka’s and Rahul plays the role of her husband. So with so many characters, we can expect a grand and sophisticated outing. Zoya resorts to her regulars, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, to helm the music of the film, and of course, expectations are high like always from them! Even higher because it’s with Zoya Akhtar, given that the combo of them and Zoya have given memorable albums in the past. So, does the trio continue with their commendable work even in this album? Read on to find out what exactly they have to offer!!


1. Dil Dhadakne Do
Singers ~ Priyanka Chopra & Farhan Akhtar

The opening track on the album awes us right from the instant we put our eyes on the names of the singers. The film has an advantage in that, two of its lead actors can sing. And Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy do not miss this opportunity, making both Priyanka and Farhan come together behind the mic to try and make the best of this opportunity. The track starts with the compulsory spunk and pizzazz that is needed in these kind of tracks to allure the audience towards them. Being a title track, it would definitely not have been easy for the trio of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy to come up with something catchy right away. The hookline which they ultimately have retained in the song too, doesn’t get you addicted right away, but will grow like slow poison. Sounds like clapping, shouting and other weird vocals increase the experimentation factor of the song, yet keep it entertaining. The overall composition is not short of a lively, energetic song that will eventually have you up and about. Arrangements are great in their place, and succeed in keeping your attention towards the song. Brass instruments, drums, all gather your attention and make sure you enjoy yourself throughout the song. Javed Akhtar’s lyrics are good, too, talking about the unusuality of life, and how we should keep living life in spite of anything. If there is anything that makes this song appear not up to the mark, it has got to be the vocals. Though it was a nice idea to have lead actors croon the song, it didn’t quite work out as good as they might’ve wanted it to. Though Priyanka sounds good with her husky, appealing voice and her short interventions that increase the addictiveness of the song, Farhan is a huge letdown. The husky and grainy texture of his voice, which Pritam had succeeded in getting rid of in ‘Shaadi Ke Side/Effects’, returns even huskier than before, proving as a huge hurdle, which may affect the song’s reach big-time. Also, he doesn’t sound as good as he did in other songs of his! I wonder what happened! What I have to say, is that the promotional idea of having the actors sing, backfired on the makers themselves!! Vocals could’ve been way better!

 

2. Pehli Baar
Singers ~ Sukriti Kakkar & Siddharth Mahadevan

A lively and rejuvenating rock rhythm makes you forget about whatever slight disappointment the opening track gave you, and gives you the urge to move on to welcome the next track in an unprejudiced manner. The synth rhythm with which the track starts, joined by catchy rock guitars that are surely going to remind you of ‘Dil Dhadakne Do’ (Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara), create the perfect ambience that is required in such a song, namely, a romantic rock ballad. When I say romantic, I don’t necessarily mean calm and soft, however. Because this song is anything but that! Energetic, spunky and dynamic beats and arrangements help the track become what it is, and the youthfulness that Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy have infused into the track is just unbelievable. It would look magnificent onscreen as well. The composition, though resembling the aforementioned song at many places throughout the song, still has the vibe and infectious quality which enhances the song and eventually diminishes out the slight déjà vu feeling. Especially in the antara, things get really interesting, slowing down and steering away from typicality and convention. Wonderful beats and arrangements that accompany the composition right from the beginning to the end, do provide that addictive nature that one looks for in any song. Mostly placed on rock arrangements like drums and electric guitars, which give the song the youthful and flamboyant touch, you feel an instant surge of energy as soon as you hear the song, thanks to the enthusiastic treatment the song has gone through. Javed saab’s writing wouldn’t make you feel at all, that someone his age has written it, simply because of the fact that the lyrics are just as child-like, youthful, full-of-gusto and refreshing as the composition and arrangements. You won’t find yourself coming across any stale lines in the song, thanks to the new-age, simple and relateable lyrics which the man has penned down. For the last, I have saved the praise that the two singers, Siddharth and Sukriti deserve. Siddharth, now a regular in each and every one of the trio’s albums, delivers the tune in a enlivening manner, accompanied brilliantly by the third Kakar sibling, Sukriti, getting a relaunch after some forgettable songs, which she might not have even imagined, with the most well-known composer trio of the industry. Both of them complement each other perfectly, and the perfect amount of cheeriness can be heard in the track, as a result of their outstanding combo. An engaging affair, from start to end!! Full marks for the brilliant pairing of Siddharth & Sukriti!! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Gallan Goodiyaan
Singers ~ Yashita Sharma, Manish Kumar Tipu (Manish J. Tipu), Farhan Akhtar, Shankar Mahadevan & Sukhwinder Singh

No Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy album feels complete without some weird, unusual and out-of-this-world experimentation, which takes you by surprise at first, but gradually grows on you so quickly, that it feels as if it is a part of your own self! The next song makes you go through the exact same feeling yet again, with the trio experimenting in various ways, resultantly churning out an enjoyable, trippy and chartbusting material type of track. This time, they start off the song with those weirdly addictive techno beats that come across as desi, and the regular band-baaja shown in films about Punjabi families. But in no time, the familiarity wears away, only to reveal an underlying freshness and trippiness that’ll make you go crazy after it. Novelty takes a new form for itself with this track, and the trio, who always ends up surprising in such tracks, do nothing less here! As Sukhwinder, one of the trio’s regulars, aptly starts with something that usually precedes rock Qawwalis with the rustic voice of his and the Qawwali-flavoured tune, everything comes right into place — beats, arrangements and the infectiousness of the song. It seems that Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy have a whole treasure trove of such songs, out of which they can pick any song, anytime, and can rest assured that it will strike chords with the audience. The composition follows a really wound-up path, switching direction abruptly, yet appealing nevertheless! Though many parts contradict the parts that follow, you end up getting accustomed to the abruptness of the track in no time. The uniqueness is what eventually makes the track stand out. And the arrangements are just as different and distinctive. The usual Punjabi wedding beats like dhols, nagadas and tablas are of course, evident, but in addition to that, the trio wonderfully includes awesome techno beats that you can’t help but groove along to! And the diversity which the track showcases in its voices, is unbelievably marvelous! Each of the singers does his/her own part with such perfection, that it leaves no flaws to talk about, in that department! Sukhwinder bringing the folk flavour, Yashita bringing the urban touch, Shankar enacting an old man, Farhan surprisingly impressing in this track, and Manish wonderfully increasing the quirk, all do well! And these are just the people who are credited! More singers are on the track, who are sadly uncredited by T-Series! They too, increase the likability of the song. Javed’s lyrics make for a wonderful family outing song, a shed-all-worries-and-dance type of track. Wonderful in all aspects!! Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s experimentations very rarely go wrong!! So what’re you waiting for? Hear this immediately and wait for its magic to infect you! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

4. Girls Like To Swing
Singer ~ Sunidhi Chauhan

So, this album also comes with a surprise and that is, a retro-styled cabaret jazz track! With relatively newcomers like Mikey McCleary (‘Margarita With A Straw’, ‘Bombay Velvet’), Krsna (‘Tanu Weds Manu Returns’) and the more well-known Amit Trivedi (‘Bombay Velvet’) trying out their hand at jazz music, now it’s time to witness some jazz coming from some of the most experienced composers of the industry, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy! And how beautifully they manage to bring in the perfect “SWING” to this track, guaranteeing that we will have a gala time while hearing it and dancing to it. The usual jazz percussion leads us into the track, before it gets into the quirky trumpets, trombones, tubas and whatnot. Right from the first listen, you may not find yourself getting hooked to it, but as the track progresses and as you keep hearing it repeatedly, it will surely grow. Why? There are many reasons. First of all, a trio like Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy cannot go wrong in the arrangements, at least not at this stage of their career! That makes things pretty enticing and you find yourself waiting for whatever surprise the next line of the song has in store for you, as far as arrangements are concerned. Secondly, the composition is another wild, crazy but catchy one, which doesn’t try to grab your attention forcefully like some Honey Singh songs, but instead, gives you your own sweet time for it to grow on you. And believe me, when this track infects you, it will do so very badly!! The hookline has been so aptly composed as per the title and situation of the song, and it might be the only part of the song that instantly stands out. Sunidhi, who keeps proving herself versatile with each song, is perfect here, too. Her companions give her good company, and I think even Priyanka Chopra sings (I mean “talks”) a line in the song. If she has, she hasn’t been credited, and neither have the wonderful backing vocalists that bring half the magic into the song. Without them, the song wouldn’t have been even half as catchy. One thing I would like to point out is that, in the antara, the song takes a rather unexpected turn, with a tempo change, going from all-out peppy, to a different kind of ‘peppy’, with a slower tempo. That part is to die for!! Javed saab writes perfect situational lyrics, that don’t really have much to praise, nor condemn, in them. Go for it!! Peppy, addictive, quirky and above all… SWINGY! #5StarHotelSong!!

 

5. Phir Bhi Yeh Zindagi
Singers ~ Farhan Akhtar, Vishal Dadlani, Divya Kumar, Alyssa Mendonsa & Sapna Pathak

After that energetic boost which makes up more than half of the album, finally calm and soothing music lovers get a reason to rejoice. Four tracks full of gusto and energy must have exhuasted the composers as well as singers big time. And so, the trio comes to what I think they’re best at — creating thoughtful, passionate and mind-blowingly soothing tracks. A Zoya Akhtar album without a song about life, it’s like no milk in ice cream, simply not done. So here come the trio with a grandest-of-the-grand finale to the album. Five singers behind the mic, each given wonderful and dreamy portions to sing, each singing their parts confidently and majestically, what else could you have asked for!? All of the singers, we have heard previously (except newcomer Sapna Pathak — who does a wonderful job as well!) and each have been given memorable parts. After hearing the song, when you would find yourself humming any line, you will also find yourself immediately associating that line with the singer who performs it in the song — such is the impact of the vocals. Farhan’s husky voice suits this song very well, indeed! And Divya, singing for the trio for the second time in Bollywood, does wonders with his free-flowing part. The female vocalists with their dusky voice bring in a haunting feeling, and Vishal stands tall among all of these! He is spectacular yet again. Of course, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s tune has in it that pensive quality, which everyone must be looking for in this album, right from the first song. But the way the singers have carried it all out, is fascinating. The composition is slow poison, and grows on you with time and again, very marvelously. The arrangements and recording done on the track is fabulous, mostly on synthetic beats, yet very appealing. Javed Akhtar has written very philosophical lyrics, very meaningful and written right from the heart. It sounds great to hear such wonderful lyrics after such a long time. 🙂 A grand finale to this album, which is totally worth the wait!!! Like a prize waiting for you at the end of a Boss Level in any video game. 😀 #5StarHotelSong!!


Dil Dhadakne Do is not one of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s instantly addictive and listen-on-loop type of albums which they always give, but it has that quality that makes you develop an affinity towards it as time passes. All tracks have been crafter with pure genius efforts, and it results in another mind blowing album from the trio. Plus, with all those peppy numbers, it makes for an awesome summertime album to keep you busy! So forget everything and Sun le gaane goodiyaan!!!

 

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: Phir Bhi Yeh Zindagi > Gallan Goodiyaan > Pehli Baar > Girls Like To Swing > Dil Dhadakne Do

 

Which is your favourite song from Dil Dhadakne Do? Please vote for it below! 🙂

 

Next “dish”: Hamari Adhuri Kahani, Chefs: Jeet Gannguli, Mithoon & Ami Mishra

THE PANCHRATNA HAVE KILLED DIL YET AGAIN!! (KILL/DIL – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by:- Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
♪ Lyrics by:- Gulzar
♪ Music Label:- YRF Music
♪ Music Released On:- 9th October 2014
♪ Movie Releases On:- 14th November 2014

Kill/Dil Album Cover

Kill/Dil Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Kill/Dil is an upcoming Bollywood action film, directed by Shaad Ali, and produced by Aditya Chopra. It stars Ranveer Singh, Ali Zafar, Parineeti Chopra and Govinda in the lead roles. The film is the story of Dev (Ranveer) and Tutu (Ali Zafar) who were nurtured by Bhaiyaji (Govinda) who trained them to be killers. The film follows the Western Spaghetti genre with a classic Desi twist to it. The music is composed by Shaad Ali’s regulars (his last two films had music by them), Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. This year, they had given a soundtrack full of variety for ‘2 States’, and I expected a LOT from them, because a) They are back in Bollywood and are here to stay forever now (I hope!) and b) because when it is Shaad Ali plus them, there is no doubt that the music will be mind-blowing! Lyrics are by Gulzar, who had written for Shaad in ‘Saathiya’, ‘Bunty Aur Babli’, and ‘Jhoom Barabar Jhoom’ as well. So, read on to find out how good the music of ‘Kill/Dil’ is! 🙂


1. Kill Dil
Singers ~ Sonu Nigam, Shankar Mahadevan & Gulzar

Gulzar kicks off the title track, with not such a BANG! as expected, but with some lines in shaayari form which I frankly found rather irritating (I know I shouldn’t be starting off the review to a Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy-Gulzar-Shaad Ali collaboration like this, but trust me, this chap is gonna come and irritate many more times in the album, so I’ll just tell you that you can edit out his portions at the start of the song for each song). But what follows is so wonderful and awesome, that I can very well ignore the irritation (and that goes for all the other songs which he speaks in as well 😂) Okay, back to the song. The song has been composed in a purely Western classic style, complete with the grand instrumentations and all. Starting with the brass horns, it really grabs your attention, and the waau waau sounds that follow help to keep you literally hooked to the song. The whistling, drums, guitar, all just increase the likability of the song. Once Shankar kicks in with his heavy vocals, everything gets even better, and when Sonu with his smooth and silky voice enters, awesomeness is at its peak! The high notes are very easily touched by both singers, and they complement each other very well! The hookline is one of the catchiest title song hooks of recent times. If you thought ‘Bang Bang Title Track’ was awesome, then you’re in for a better surprise with this track. The antara has an awesome tune as well, somewhat resembling the 80s sound of Bollywood. Again, high notes are touched with utmost ease in the antara. Well, I think I’ve said enough! This title track is one of the best in recent times, and best sung as well! Try it out for further information! However I can give you one more clue: #5StarHotelSong!!

 

2. Happy Budday
Singers ~ Sukhwinder Singh & Shankar Mahadevan

The name being the desi Punjabi variant of ‘Happy Birthday’, one would expect a lot of weirdness and craziness in this track. It starts with the drone of a tanpura, which was not at all expected going by the name of the song. Also, the sitar has also been used in the first one minute of the song, and in that one minute, I decided that this song is something different! It is one of those songs that grow on you more and more each time you hear them. The tune is very catchy, and the arrangements have been done very innovatively, with the use of sitar in every little unexpected place. The tinak dhin vocals in the background grab your attention instantly. The hookline is also very catchy. Though the song does not have any meaning if you consider it as a birthday song, it instead comes across as a romantic dance song. The lyrics are humorous though! Sukhwinder has sung flawlessly–these type of songs come to him naturally, it seems. Though he doesn’t pronounce ‘birthday’ as ‘budday’, but rather something like ‘birdday’! 😂 Shankar has a negligible part in the background, with some raps. The dhols in the hookline are brilliantly placed, and so is the brass trumpet which plays in the hookline! I keep replaying the song to hear that trumpet piece! Again, a beautiful interlude is witnessed in the song, and the antara is again very unusual yet sounds great! The last time the hookline is repeated, a wonderful, to-die-for type sitar piece can be heard! This fusion deserves a hats-off Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy triumph in a genre which very rarely gives scope for something new and something different! Don’t miss this one either! Definitely another #5StarHotelSong!!

 

3. Sajde
Singers ~ Arijit Singh, Nihira Joshi-Deshpande & Gulzar

You are free to edit out the first thirteen seconds (yeah, it’s the lines narrated by Gulzar) but only if they get TOO irritating, because believe me, you have no idea what’s in store for you! Remember ‘Mast Magan’ from ‘2 States’? Well, it created history (yeah, I know its only been like eight months, but still, let’s follow convention and say these stupid things, okay? 😝) when it released, and it was also the first Bollywood song that Arijit had sung for this rocking trio. In their next album itself, he got a chance to prove himself to them even more, with this very song. Okay, let’s get back to Arijit later, because I always have so much to write for him, so let’s save it for the end. Well, this track, starts with a beautiful Punjabi couplet written by none other than Gulzar and sung very dynamically by Arijit, followed by soothing aalaaps by Nihira, who had sung for Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy in ‘Bunty Aur Babli’ and ‘Salaam-E-Ishq’ as well. The composition is a fusion of classical and rock music, and you guys knows how much I love semi-classical melodies! They’re my favourite after..well, after classical melodies! 😜 The sound of water dripping is just brilliant! The guitar plucks sound awesome, too! The tune of the song is brilliant, and it is something that is instantly likeable. Nihira does a decent job, but I would have preferred Chinmayi to sing this song. The rock guitar is one of the main attractions of this song, and so is the awesome way that the drums have been played. The violins have been used very grandly, and the tablas are just waah! When Arijit repeats the lines which Gulzar says at the start, but this time with a tune, they seem to jump to life, all because of his attractive voice. The lyrics of the song are beautiful, and that was expected from Gulzar! Now, let’s move on to Arijit. “Yay!” is what all the girls must be shouting 😝 He has surpassed all his previous songs (except “Laal Ishq” from “Ram-Leela”, that is just DIVINE!) with this song, and sings with exceptional beauty and ease. The hookline is fully dependent on his energetic and dynamic vocals. And he delivers exactly what is needed. He seems to be the perfect choice for this song. The rhythm of the song is so beautiful and it is so hard to sing, that Arijit and Nihira deserve a standing ovation, a kya baat, kya baat Mithun-da style, and what not! They have done exceptionally well! Of course, half the credit goes to the trio and the lyricist, for creating such a spellbinding melody to some beautiful lines and infusing it with such wonderful fusion. Time to fall in love with Arijit’s voice yet again! A must-listen; one of Arijit’s best performances, and PERFECT composition, lyrics and arrangements! What more could you ask for!? #5StarHotelSong!!

 

4. Bol Beliya
Singers ~ Siddharth Mahadevan, Sunidhi Chauhan & Shankar Mahadevan

Starting with a dynamic drumroll and old-fashioned 80s trumpet fanfare, the mood switches to a very dark and sinister one with this next track on the soundtrack. Siddharth starts with the required punch and dynamics. He seems to be always getting songs in which he has to shout at the top of his lungs! Time to hear him in a romantic track now! Anyways, the song is full of groovy rhythmic beats and dynamic percussion. The two lead vocalists are both vocal powerhouses, and they both perform very well, and take the song to a different level. The very catchy ‘bol beliya’ vocals in the background, probably by Shankar, sound awesome! In places, it sounds a lot like ‘Hulla Re’ from ‘2 States’, but still sounds awesome. The characteristic sinister tone that the song carries is very intriguing. The other interesting part to this song is that it has to be used in two different places and two different situations, but it still makes sense if heard as a separate song. Kudos to Gulzar for achieving this! Sunidhi is the queen of such songs, and she sings both the high and low pitched parts wonderfully. The two singers complement each other perfectly. The dhols which have been used provide an awesome groovy beat to the song, and they reflect the signature style of the trio. One of the catchiest, scariest (okay, I don’t mean ‘Paranormal Activity’ type scary 😝) songs of the year! Great performance by the singers! #5StarHotelSong!

 

5. Sweeta
Singer ~ Adnan Sami

Before starting about this song, let me ask one single question to Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and Shaad Ali. Why, oh why did you have to make this sweeeeeet track so short?? I demand the answer! 😜 Yes, this beautiful song is just two minutes long! 😞 So I’ll review it however I can for such a small track. But even though it is so small, I have so much to say about it (relatively). Adnan Sami, of whom we haven’t heard much these days, croons this one flawlessly. The brilliant Italian style melody has been decorated with wonderful accordion and violin instrumentations and mindblowing percussion, most probably the bongo-congo drums. Again, the retro style is observed in this song as well. The strings and Adnan’s vocals are the main attraction in this song. His silky voice just suits the composition perfectly well. The lyrics by Gulzar are quirky and not ordinary, but funny. It is a short track with two stanzas having the same tune, and I wish Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy had made it longer, so we could enjoy it even more. Because now the listener’s situation is like cherish it till it lasts! Nevertheless it deserves to be a #5StarHotelSong!

 

6. Daiyya Maiyya
Singers ~ Udit Narayan, Shankar Mahadevan, Jaaved Jaaferi & Rasika Chandrashekhar

Well, it starts in a rather impressive Qawwali manner, and immediately grasps your attention, and everything going fine. Brass horns followed by beautiful tabla beats sound awesome as a start. Then an impressive harmonium tune after which we hear Udit Narayan singing some Qawwali lines, accompanied by Shankar Mahadevan. All is going perfectly fine, until some utterly ridiculous auto-tuned Udit Narayan’s voice takes over to sing a totally unimpressive and unfitting hookline,which is totally devoid of any catchiness or sensibility whatsoever. I couldn’t believe it was by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy at all! What an abrupt turn in the tune of the song! Plus, it sounds like a line from ‘Maahi Ve’ from ‘Kal Ho Naa Ho’. Jaaved Jaaferi (I don’t know why he has been pulled in, when they have a perfect rapper in Ranveer Singh himself) utters even more stupid rap, and then the title track, features in this song after the rap, and it has also been spoilt; they have destroyed it completely! A little temporary relief is brought by Rasika Chandrashekhar. She doesn’t do that good a job, either, but her part has a likebale tune. Her nasal voice is supposed to humorous, and it works a bit. By the way, just for your information, her voice has been disturbingly auto-tuned as well. :/ The main attraction of this song, however, has to be the lyrics by Gulzar, which provide at least some, if not a lot of, comic relief. The only unsatisfactory track in this album. Still, do hear it for the weirdness!

 

7. Baawra
Singers ~ Shankar Mahadevan, Nihira Joshi-Deshpande, Gulzar & Loy Mendonsa

Again, Gulzar starts with some lines, but in this song, his lines suit the ambience and he, contrary to irritating like the first songs, helps to gain interest in the starting of the song. It is a very unusual sad composition, and Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy have succeeded in making a beautiful and emotional one, at that. The piano notes at the start which diminish and fade away are just magical. Also worth mentioning is the touch of rock that the trio has infused into this semi-classical melody. Shankar, is as his best in such songs, and he probes once again that he is the king of classical songs. Nihira does better than she did in the other song, too! The tune of the song is instantly likeable and unforgettable. The hookline from “Zindagi uljha hua sauda hai…” to “…main baawara” is just awesome. That line has the capacity to attract many listeners. And it would also be the line which will get most famous in the song. The aalaaps and sargam have been sung by Shankar so effortlessly. It truly seems like heaven when he does such variations. The guitars by Loy sound first-class. Flute has also been used in huge proportions. The second antara which Nihira starts, has a very sweet and pretty tune. The tablas in that part are just breath-taking. Her rendition is no less breathtaking. She has sung it very beautifully, and I guess that she is very comfortable singing with her master instead of Arijit. 😁 The lyrics by Gulzar are very beautiful and innovative. Listen closely for references to ‘Sweeta’. Also, look for the genius line, “Dil waali naukri ne maara”. 👌 A composition with class written all over it! Another Muat-listen and another #5StarHotelSong!

 

8. Nakhriley
Singers ~ Shankar Mahadevan, Ali Zafar, Mahalakshmi Iyer & Gulzar

The next and last song on the soundtrack is an old-fashioned 80s-style Qawwali number. This time, the trio has gone the full way with the old-fashionedness of the song. They have made a song, which you would find it difficult to identify as from 2014. Rather like 1994 or something. Nevertheless, I found it very nice. In this song, Gulzar irritates, so you can cut that part out if you need. 😜 The strings, and tablas and traditional Qawwali instruments have been used very efficiently. When I first heard it, I could only picturise Shahrukh Khan and Kajol dancing in ‘Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge’ or ‘Kabhie Khushi Kabhi Gham’. It seriously sounds like it is from that era. Anyways, the jugalbandi of Shankar and Ali Zafar is fun to hear, but Mahalakshmi’s voice doesn’t quite fit in well. Sunidhi would have been the ideal choice over here. Nevertheless since she performs well, we can’t blame the trio for choosing her. It is a surprise to hear Ali Zafar doing harqatein and variations all of a sudden, and he does them beautifully. Shankar, well, he’s the badshah of all this, so no use to try to find any mistake there. 😜 The conclusion of the song, which may seem like a second antara, is very, very interesting to hear. The tempo changes have been done very smoothly, but sometimes even I get confused as to how they have been done! This song is very likable, and even if it doesn’t appeal to you in the first listen, it will surely do so in the subsequent listens! You might argue that it is too old-fashioned, but, umm I don’t think that’s a problem, is it? Maybe the situation is like that. 😊 Beautiful Qawwali composed in the traditional style!  #5StarHotelSong!


Kill/Dil is another masterpiece album by the trio and Shaad Ali with Gulzar’s lyrics. One song, ‘Daiyya Maiyya’ is below expectations, but the others efficiently meet all expectations. I would say that the ‘Panchratna’ (Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy + Gulzar + Shaad Ali) have killed ‘Dil’ once again!! 

 

Final Rating for This Album:- सा < रे < ग < म < प < ध < नीसां

Note:- The letter which is underlined is the final rating.

 

Which is your favourite song from Kill Dil? Please vote for the same below! 🙂

 

Next “dish”:- Happy Ending, Chefs:- Sachin-Jigar