SHANKAR-EHSAAN-LOY KE TAGDE SUR!! (SOORMA – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
♪ Lyrics by: Gulzar
♪ Music Label: Sony Music
♪ Music Released On: 3rd July 2018
♪ Movie Releases On: 13th July 2018

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Soorma Album Cover

Listen to the songs: Saavn

Buy the songs: iTunes


Soorma is an upcoming Bollywood sports biopic starring Diljit Dosanjh, Taapsee Pannu and Angad Bedi in lead roles. The film is directed by Shaad Ali and produced by Sony Pictures Networks Productions, Chitrangada Singh and Deepak Singh. The film doesn’t look like anything Shaad Ali has tried before, being an out and out biopic of professional Indian field hockey player and ex-captain, Sandeep ‘Flicker’ Singh. As always, Shaad Ali has roped in Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy for the music. Not only have they delievered some of their best soundtracks with Ali, but they’ve also opened their account in 2018 with ‘Raazi’, my favourite album of the year. So it goes without saying, that I’m rooting for the songs of this album to turn out extraordinary!


The album could well be considered to have two theme songs, but the one which stands out instantly is the Soorma Anthem, starting with an amazing flute, accompanied by a wonderful guitar loop, the tune of which becomes the tune of the first line of the song. The composition is quite low-pitched but Shankar Mahadevan’s range is so wide, he covers the low and high notes equally well. The composition by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy is an instantly distinguishable Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy composition, with numerous twists and turns and a 90s dharm that doesn’t seem tedious or drab at all. The high portions in the antara are beautiful, and meanwhile, the trio decorates the song with amazing arrangements like percussions which somehow suit the hockey theme so well, because it sounds like the sound you would get when two hockey sticks are tapped to one another. The Punjabi percussions and the strings have been orchestrated masterfully as well, and the backing chorus is one of the main highlights of the song; they’ve been used just as well as they’d been used in ‘Raazi’s ‘Ae Watan’, especially the way they sing ‘Sooormaa’ alongside the main man. What can one say about Gulzar saab’s lyrics? The inspirational value of the lyrics is so high, that it doesn’t feel pretentious, or dramatised even for one moment.

The second song that can be called a theme song for the album is Flicker Singh, which takes a more pronounced Shaad Ali-SEL route, in its composition and arrangements and overall sound. The Punjabi percussions are enjoyable, especially because the dhol resonates so wonderfully, and the trio uses the usual rock guitars, which is like a tradition for them in Shaad Ali soundtracks. The song takes you to the ‘Jhoom Barabar Jhoom’ title song, in the ‘Ding ding ding’ part that is euqivalent to ‘Jhoom jhoom Jhoom’ from the latter song. About two minutes into the song, it takes a folksy turn with nice dholaks and manjeeras, and the composition by the trio is so strong there, you instantly fall in love with it. Whoever the singer is who starts the song, he sounds so much like Daler Mehndi, it gives the song a much higher level. Each and every singer actually has done his part very well, and has left no scope for complaints in that department. Hemant Brijwasi, Shehnaz and Sahil Akhtar, along with Shankar and Ehsaan, render this song perfectly. The second antara has another splendid portion full of aalaaps that takes your breath away.

The same set of singers return in Pardesiya, a sad song that is one of the most heavenly numbers I’ve heard since a long time, in Bollywood. I believe Hemant Brijwasi leads this one. The song starts off slowly, but it serves as a setup for the listeners, and then you get sucked up into a beautiful Sufi sad song, with majestic tablas and sarangi taking over, and Shankar Mahadevan’s amazing sargam winning your heart. The composition is heart rending, and instantly has you feeling for the character, even though we don’t know what exactly has happened at the point this song will play in the film! Midway into the song, it changes into a magnificent bhajan with the beautiful manjeeras and tablas playing the Bhajan theka. The lyrics by Gulzar are just as heart-rending, and it makes the listening experience all the more inmersive and personal.

Good Man Di Laaltain becomes the second Gulzar song using that phrase in the second year, last year’s song being ‘Bloody Hell’s (Rangoon). Another coincidence is that Sunidhi is signing this song too. She gets two lines in the second verse, but as always, does well. The song belongs to the leading man Sukhwinder Singh, who never fails to spread his infectious energy all over every song he sings. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s composition is good, but grows with time and didn’t hook me instantly. But one thing I can say for sure is that, the composition isn’t bad at all! For a celebratory number, the trio has produced a functional song, and it works in its intent, especially the tangibly Indian hookline. Any true Indian will nod his head on the ‘Good man diiiii…’ line. The percussion again stands out, but the trio add some digital beats, which sound all the more quirky — kind of like ‘Iski Uski’ (2 States). Gulzar’s lyrics are fun, as required.

The song that defines the album for me, which released first and features on the album first, though, I will talk about now, at the end. Ishq Di Baajiyaan is the quintessential Punjabi romantic number, in which I could find nothing wrong! It’s very rare for a song to be so perfect, and this song has made that achievement, in my eyes. From the starting introductory Sufi-ish chorus chants by Diljit and Shankar Mahadevan, to the moving and intense composition, to the fresh Punjabi arrangements adorned with amazing violins and mandolin, to the head-nod-inducing dholak percussion which plays throughout the song, to Diljit’s impeccable rendition especially in the antara,  the composition of which harks back to Vishal Bhardwaj’s work in the 90s, this song has had me hooked since it released. Gulzar’s lyrics are so, so, so beautiful, I can’t help but wonder how he still comes up with such lyrics even after having written so much — clearly artistic ideas never get exhausted when you have the talent. 🙂


Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy in their first album of 2018 presented a soundtrack that went well with the movie, and showcased their talent at creating a Kashmiri sound. Now for their second film of the year, they reunite with a director they’ve worked with quite often, a director they know in and out, and for whom they’ve given some of their best soundtracks, and I can only say, their ‘tagde sur’ (strong melodies) will always stay immortal!

Total Points Scored by This Album: 9 + 8.5 + 9.5 + 7.5 + 10 = 44.5

Album Percentage: 89%

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: Ishq Di Baajiyaan > Pardesiya > Soorma Anthem > Flicker Singh > Good Man Di Laaltain

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

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MUSIC KA MAIDAAN FATEH NA HO PAAYA! (SANJU – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: A.R. Rahman, Rohan-Rohan & Vikram Montrose
♪ Lyrics by: Irshad Kamil, Shekhar Astitwa, Puneet Sharma & Rohan Gokhale
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 29th June 2018
♪ Movie Released On: 29th June 2018

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Sanju Album Cover

Listen to the songs: Saavn

Buy the songs: iTunes


Sanju is a Bollywood biopic starring Ranbir Kapoor, Paresh Rawal, Manisha Koirala, Dia Mirza, Vicky Kaushal, Sonam Kapoor, Karishma Tanna, Jim Sarbh and Anushka Sharma among others. The film is directed by Rajkumar Hirani, and produced by him along with Vidhu Vinod Chopra. We all know how Sanjay Dutt features in almost all of Hirani’s films, save ‘3 Idiots’. However, Hirani says he never got to know him personally until one day he started talking about all his hardships during an emotional breakdown. That lit a lamp in Hirani’s mind, and he decided to make a biopic. Now, I can’t comment on the movie as I haven’t watched it yet, but I can sure do a music review, right? 🤣 The music of the film has been composed by three composer entities (one being a duo), Rohan-Rohan, Vikram Montrose and A.R. Rahman. It’s surprising to see Rahman first of all in a multicomposer album, because whenever he did those in the past, it was because he left midway due to other commitments. But here, he was the last addition reportedly! Rohan-Rohan have two songs, and it isn’t their Hindi debut; that happened four years ago with ‘Mumbai Delhi Mumbai’, but it is Vikram’s Hindi film debut — he has done some Hindi pop songs and a Marathi album called ‘Bhay’, which was mediocre. Also, I’ve noticed that Hirani uses music as a prop to take the story forward, but not even in the way other filmmakers do (they’ll have a song play in the background and all). No, Hirani will have a full-fledged four-minute song sequence, but it’ll make the moment fun and enjoyable. However, the music itself isn’t always up to the mark. His favourite film album of mine is ‘Pk’, because the music actually was good there. Let’s check out how the music is with ‘Sanju’, though you might already know by my review’s headline. Sorry. I’m dimwitted that way.


Rohan-Rohan are the ‘chosen ones’ who get to begin this album. And they do it in quite a quirky manner too! Main Badhiya Tu Bhi Badhiya is a song that is supposed to be an old song that the character are singing in the 80s, so the song is composed like a 50s nok-jhhok number. It starts with a wonderful opening prelude, which instantly sucks you into the 50s. Sunidhi’s voice modulation is fantastic, and is obviously one of the best vocal renditions of the year. Sonu Nigam, in comparison seems weak, but I wonder, since he can mimic so well, why didn’t he sing in a nasal tone, as well? He still has sung in one, but it could’ve been more pronounced I feel. Rohan-Rohan’s composition is fun, but takes some time getting used to. And Puneet Sharma’s lyrics are very quirky and funny, especially the part when they talk about ‘family planning’ or rather, the lack of it. The song somewhat addresses Sanjay Duty’s commitment issues, and it’s the typical Hirani way of presenting a serious topic in such a flippant and casual way.

Rohan-Rohan’s second song doesn’t fare too well. Bhopu Baj Raha Hain tries to start with a retro sound as well, trumpets blaring, bhopus belting out weird noises, but it soon transcends into a very weird zone. Nakash Aziz was the obvious choice for the song, and I must say Rohan-Rohan’s arrangements are enjoyable, but I’m sure nobody will listen to this song again. There’s not magnetism or attractiveness to it. The antaras are poorly structured, and I’d never expect this song to be in any big commercial film. The worst part is that this is a Hirani film. Though the duo has tried to create the Hirani zone in this song as well, I feel it could’ve been less effervescent. The lyrics by Rohan Gokhale and Shekhar Astitwa are just a bunch of words you never think much about.

Vikram Montrose, the debutant, also starts off his share of the album with a song that everyone would love because of the motivational touch, the powerful vocals and the inspirational lyrics. Kar Har Maidaan Fateh does carry thag irresistibly moving sound, I agree. The choice of Sukhwinder Singh wasn’t surprising, but the choice of Shreya Ghoshal was surprising, and the way she sings is even more surprising — she sings quite lower than she usually sings. She shines even then, though. Sukhwinder Singh’s parts sound almost heard-before and nothing new, but because of the freshness Shreya brings through her low pitch, the song reaches different levels of awesomeness. Vikram arranges is quite standardly, with rock guitars, percussions, and drums. However, the violin playing the hookline in the interludes, is amazing. Also, the composition took some time to grow on me, but when it did, I couldn’t get it out of my head. All in all, it was a good debut for Montrose.

His second song Baba Bolta Hain Bas Ho Gaya, is hinged on the quirky lyrics by Puneet Sharma and Rohan Gokhale. Papon brings a different, rough texture to his otherwise smooth voice, but I enjoyed Ranbir’s parts more. And Supriya Pathak (not the one you’re thinking of) sings her lines quite funnily. The groove and gun sounds throughout the song have been overused so many times in so many gangster movies in Bollywood, that it sounds boring here. The song is also unbearably long, at just under than 5 minutes. However, I’m sure this song is for the theatres.

And then enters A.R. Rahman, who gets two songs too. Ruby Ruby starts with that irresistible bass line, followed by the wonderful guitars (Keba Jeremiah) and a grungy voice keeps whispering “Rrrrrubyy”. When the actual melody starts, you are initially confused, and the song takes some listens to get used to, but since it depicts Dutt’s drug addiction phase, I think it’s deliberately composed like that — so many lines repeating so many times; there’s actually three discernible different parts in the song that keep repeating over and over. And it sends us into a trance. The percussions are amazing too, as are the strings! Shashwat Singh masters the grunge very well, and I especially loved the part when he does the descension from ‘Tu bhi, ruby, ruby…’. Poorvi Koutish is a capable backing vocalists, and her ‘la la la’ is so haunting, it sucks you in.

Speaking of haunting, Rahman’s next song Mujhe Chaand Pe Le Chalo is just that. A sensuous composition, rendered just perfectly by Nikhita Gandhi, the song immediately has you hooked. It has a number of lines ending with high notes, which Nikhita holds so wonderfully. The rhythm Rahman employs in the background is intriguing, and reminds you of ‘Muskaanein Jhoothi Hai’ from ‘Talaash’ with the shakers, the subtle percussion, and very muffled strings that give the song an even more sensuous atmosphere. Irshad Kamil writes lyrics that suit the ambience of the song, and I feel that the song itself can transport you to the moon. Also, Nikhita hums so brilliantly at the end of the song. 😍


Sanju turns out to be the weakest Hirani album for me, due to the meaningless quirks from the newer songs by the younger composers, that just brings the album down. The music field has sadly not been conquered by Hirani this time.

Total Points Scored by This Album: 8 + 5 + 8 + 6 + 8.5 + 9 = 44.5

Album Percentage: 74.17%

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: Mujhe Chaand Pe Le Chalo > Ruby Ruby > Main Badhiya Tu Bhi Badhiya = Kar Har Maidaan Fateh > Baba Bolta Hain Bas Ho Gaya > Bhopu Baj Raha Hain

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

THE LYRICISTS’ SUCCESSFUL RAID!! (RAID – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Amit Trivedi, Tanishk Bagchi & Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan
♪ Lyrics by: Manoj Muntashir & Indraneel
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 1st March 2018
♪ Movie Released On: 16th March 2018

Raid Album Cover

 

Listen to the songs: Saavn

Buy the songs: iTunes


Raid is a thriller starring Ajay Devgn, Saurabh Shukla and Ileana D’Cruz, directed by Rajkumar Gupta and produced by Bhushan Kumar, Krishan Kumar, Kumar Mangat Pathak and Abhishek Pathak. The film is about India’s longest raid in the 1980s, and I’m sure all of you have already watched the film; blame my laziness for the late music review. Anyway, the music has been composed by Tanishk Bagchi and Amit Trivedi, both having composed (rather Tanishk having recreated and Trivedi having composed) two songs each.


Once again, T-Series taps into the remake-producing compartment of Tanishk’s brain, but this time, the results are actually not bad! Two Qawwalis of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan have been chosen by the makers here, and Tanishk recreates each of them with finesse and most importantly, respect. Sanu Ek Pal Chain, a soft romantic number, turns out to be the polar opposite of the horrendous ‘Mere Rashke Qamar’ (Baadshaho). Tanishk learns from his mistakes and this time the soul of the original song is kept intact. Tanishk’s composition skills are also tested here, because he makes his own antara, and does quite well at it too. The arrangements are similar to how Arko arranges his love songs, with the acoustic sounds being more prominent. Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’s rendition is great, and thankfully not ear-piercing like ‘Baadshaho’, and the lyrics by Manoj Muntashir hit the right note.
If “Sanu Ek Pal” was remade well, Nit Khair Manga‘s makeover is splendid, and Tanishk shows some real creativity there. Again, Rahat and Manoj join hands with him for the vocals and lyrics respectively. But if you notice, Tanishk has many more original lines to compose here, and apparently has much more freedom to do what he wants, and it results in some mind-blowing arrangements. The hookline is the peak of the song, where Tanishk starts off with the typical Sufi tabla rhythm, only to stop it, and start it again. It continues in this stop-start fashion all throughout! The trend of playing the hookline on the mandolin is followed here, too, but it sounds great here, and not contrived like it does everywhere else. Rahat manages the vocals beautifully, his nuances on point and very intricate.
Amit’s half of the album is purely situational. What Amit couldn’t probably do, they made Tanishk handle, and what Tanishk probably can’t do, they let Amit handle, as he is, after all, a senior to Tanishk, and knows how to create situational songs!
Black is like the theme song of the movie, but Amit Trivedi gets the 80s setting of the film spot-on in his arrangements for this song. Sukhwinder handles such songs amazingly, and he does so here too. Since the song is situational, it doesn’t grow instantly, but the peak of the song is surely the high pitched line before the hook. The hook, trademark Trivedi stuff, is something that will set your head nodding in its rhythm. The interlude is entertaining too. Indraneel’s lyrics suit the theme well; I guess he is a debutant, have never seen his name as a lyricist before! Amit’s percussions are top-notch, and the trumpets help give the song an authoritative feel.
The other Trivedi song, Jhuk Na Paunga, is your everyday Bollywood patriotic song, but oh, does it work in its intent. Comparisons to ‘Tu Bhoola Jise’ (Airlift) are inevitable, but in its own place, the song works well. It starts off with a typical Trivedi guitar riff followed by a typical Trivedi trumpet piece, and as soon as Papon’s feathery voice kicks in, so do your goosebumps. The mellow hookline is enough to melt the heart of anyone who regards himself a staunch nationalist. Again, the percussions and brass instruments are the highlight of the arrangements, but Amit adds a wonderful tabla rhythm in the antara, which will steal your heart. The chorus towards the end of the song is fascinating — “Toofan Mein Jalti Hui…“. It is small touches like this that make this the best song of the album, but the main reason, is Indraneel’s lyrics. Though the composition might be inaccessible for many of the masses, nobody can say they didn’t connect with the poignant lyrics.


Both the music composers do equally well here, but the lyricists raid the music and take away the spoils!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 7.5 + 8 + 7.5 + 8.5 = 31.5

Album Percentage: 78.75%

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: 
Jhuk Na Paunga > Nit Khair Manga > Sanu Ek Pal Chain = Black

 

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

 

Remake Counter:
No. Of Remakes: 13 (from previous albums) + 02 (from Raid) = 15

EXPERIMENTATION ABHI BHI ZINDA HAI!! (TIGER ZINDA HAI – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Vishal-Shekhar & Julius Packiam
♪ Lyrics by: Irshad Kamil & Raftaar
♪ Music Label: YRF Music
♪ Music Released On: 12th December 2017
♪ Movie Released On: 22nd December 2017

Tiger Zinda Hai Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Tiger Zinda Hai is a Bollywood action film starring Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif in lead roles. The film is directed by ‘Mere Brother Ki Dulhan’, ‘Gunday’ and ‘Sultan’ fame Ali Abbas Zafarand produced by Aditya Chopra. The film is a sequel to 2012’s ‘Ek Tha Tiger’, which was directed by Kabir Khan. The music to that instalment was given by Sohail Sen, with a guest composition by Sajid-Wajid, but this time, despite the director’s past associations with Sohail Sen, he goes for his the duo who made the music for ‘Sultan’, Vishal-Shekhar. Now, Vishal-Shekhar’s last album was ‘Befikre’ around the same time last year. After a whole year, they are returning to the scene with such a huge film. Also, seeing that the YRF-Vishal-Shekhar combo has been such an amazing one, I’m sure the album will be great too. Though an action film doesn’t have much scope for great music, it sure can be appreciable! Let’s see whether they build on Sohail’s base of a good commercial album, or go the unconventional and experimental way!


Vishal-Shekhar’s year-long hiatus seemed long, but with the first song of their comeback album, Swag Se Swagat, it seems they returned with all the wrong music. The song sounds like a hastily made Sajid-Wajid-Salman number, with a hook that is utterly banal and another line that desperately goes ‘Kuchnikuchnikuch‘. Lyrically it is one of the most mediocre works coming out of Kamil’s pen. A nice incorporation of Julius Packiam’s theme music for ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ makes the song at least a little catchy. Neha Bhasin’s vocals are great, but Dadlani’s usual energy doesn’t come across this time. The second song Dil Diyan Gallan, marks the duo’s first time working with Atif Aslam, and though there’s nothing new in the way they present his voice, what is new is that he is made to sing in Punjabi — a quite interesting combination, and sounds beautiful too. The composition is soothing and fit for listening on loop. The slightly retrograde arrangements can’t be a good sign: I’ve noticed so many composers falling back on the tried-and-tested tabla rhythm this year. The strings do make their presence felt though — reminds me of Vishal-Shekhar’s ‘Naina’ (Gori Tere Pyaar Mein). Irshad’s lyrics are good too. The song is seen in a much earthier Unplugged Version sung by Neha Bhasin, back in her ‘Jag Ghoomeya’ mode, and her amazing diction of the Punjabi phrases sounds yummy once again. The arrangements here are beautiful too, with a lilting Kashmiri vibe to them. There are places even, when Neha sounds like Kavita Seth. I would’ve also loved another version by Harshdeep Kaur, who suits the Punjabi template amazingly.
The next song, called Zinda Hai, can be called the title track, except it never says ‘Tiger’. Anyway, the song is an electrifying rock number, with Sukhwinder back in his energetic form, and Raftaar complementing him well. Vishal-Shekhar’s composition is good, but not great. Arrangements are also good, but will inevitably be compared to ‘Sultan’s title track, in front of which they pale in comparison. The rest of the album is a very different zone of music than that which one would expect in a Salman Khan entertainer. Daata Tu sees Vishal-Shekhar in the ‘Kahaani’ mode, a beautiful divine melody with Shreya touching the heart strings effortlessly. A wonderful Sufi portion towards the end redeems the song for those who got bored in the beginning. The soundtrack’s best is cleverly saved for the last, and it is Jyoti Nooran’s Tera Noor, a hard-hitting Sufi number, with amazing lyrics by Kamil. The rock is hard-hitting, and though Sufi Rock is almost always great, Vishal-Shekhar take it a notch higher with this one. The adlib at the beginning is heavenly. But beware that this one is highly experimental and will take at least a couple of listens to develop a liking to.


Vishal-Shekhar’s music has beautifully inverted the course of the ‘Tiger’ franchise. Where Sohail Sen & Sajid-Wajid were religiously commercial in the first album, Vishal-Shekhar dare to go experimental and melodious in this one!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 2.5 + 3.5 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4.5 = 22.5

Album Percentage:  75%

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: Tera Noor > Daata Tu = Dil Diyan Gallan (Unplugged Version) = Zinda Hai > Dil Diyan Gallan > Swag Se Swagat

 

That was the last album for the year!! Wow, time flies fast! Do watch out for the December monthly awards, followed by the end of the year round-ups and lists!!

SACHIN-JIGAR STAY GROUNDED!! (BHOOMI – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Sachin-Jigar
♪ Lyrics by: Priya Saraiya, Anvita Dutt, Vayu Srivastava & Utkarsh Naithani
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 28th August 2017
♪ Movie Releases On: 22nd September 2017

Bhoomi Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Bhoomi is an upcoming Bollywood action thriller starring Sanjay Dutt, Aditi Rao Hydari and Sidhant Gupta in lead roles. The film has been directed by ‘Mary Kom’ and ‘Sarbjit’ fame Omung Kumar, and produced by Bhushan Kumar, Krishan Kumar and Sandeep Singh. The film is a revenge saga revolving around a father trying to avenge his daughter, who is a rape victim. Now, this filmmaker Omung Kumar, has been known for making loud and sobby dramatic films, but also, both of his previous films have had amazing music albums as well, featuring in the Music Mastani’s Top 20 Albums of the respective years they released in. While ‘Mary Kom’ featured music by newcomers Shashi-Shivamm, and ‘Sarbjit’ featured a nice mix of T-Series-affiliated artists (Amaal Mallik, Tanishk Bagchi, Jeet Gannguli), and newcomers Shail-Pritesh, this time Omung raises the bar by roping in highly busy composers Sachin-Jigar. Now this is probably the first time I remember seeing the duo compose for a drama like this, so it’ll be something new for them and for us. But expectations are still sky high because of Omung! So let’s see how far above the bhoomi (ground) Sachin-Jigar’s music flies!


1. Trippy Trippy

Singers ~ Neha Kakkar, Benny Dayal, Brijesh Shandilya & Badshah, Lyrics by ~ Priya Saraiya

Sachin-Jigar’s fifth album of the year starts off with a song I can’t believe they have made!! The song is a club song with a composition that I would expect from someone like Badshah or Yo Yo Honey Singh, and not Sachin-Jigar! The composition is very weird, and not in the good way. It is basically just a typical item song composition, and coming from Sachin-Jigar, that is quite shocking. The male portions especially, are very disappointing. Those are actually the parts that could’ve been the best. Also, the antara is quite similar to their own “Teri Mahima Aprampaar” (Entertainment). The hookline is just Badshah belching out the words in an expressionless tone. Here, it is evident the composers were trying to experiment, just to make the song sound a bit better, but sadly, they couldn’t make those experiments work. For example, the flute and dhols arrangement was clearly done to increase the quirkiness of the song, but it backfires, sadly. The beats too, aren’t addictive or anything — it is just a straightforward song to listen to and forget. The vocals by Neha Kakkar are very disappointing after that amazing rendition of hers in ‘Ghungta’ (Babumoshai Bandookbaaz)! Here she doesn’t even sound half as energetic as she did there! Benny Dayal and Brijesh Shandilya (and of course Badshah) are used very less, and their portions are just repeated over and over. Good, because those parts are very irritating. Also, the ‘Hicky hicky’ sung by Neha is kind of irritating too! The lyrics by Priya Saraiya are the usual fare we get to hear in such songs, and nothing really makes sense. A song that must be a mistake!!

Rating: 2.5/5

 

2. Lag Ja Gale

Singer ~ Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, Lyrics by ~ Priya Saraiya

Next up, the composers present a romantic song, very saccharine-sweet, and following a Sufi template to the tee. Again, it is shocking that Sachin-Jigar’s music gets so predictable, but let’s not complain just yet. The composition here is very beautiful, and doesn’t take time to like. The mukhda and antara are especially very beautiful. It is the hook line “tere mere pyaar nu“, that is very predictable and sounds out of place, in an otherwise beautiful song. I can’t remember which, but it sounds an awful lot like a very famous 90s song too. The presence of Rahat almost impeded me from liking the song a lot. His voice has been making songs heavy and inaccessible these days (Like it did for ‘Mere Rashke Qamar’ from ‘Baadshaho’), but thankfully, Sachin-Jigar have employed his voice prudently, and not overdone the high pitch or the aalaaps, and it comes out very beautiful. The “Rab Varga” loop gives the song a very unconventionally abrupt start, and it’s one of the best effects of the song. The arrangements by the duo are the trademark Sufi dholaks and tablas, but because of the composition, you bear with it. Also, a wonderful sarangi keeps you engaged throughout the song! The major part of the song also has acoustic guitars, making it a kind of fusion between Sufi and acoustic guitars. Priya Saraiya’s lyrics are very cute, and very simple-sweet. A rare song by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan that will be known for simplicity! I wish there was some innovation though, as it has turned out very predictable!

Rating: 4/5

 

3. Will You Marry Me

Singers ~ Jonita Gandhi & Divya Kumar, Lyrics by ~ Anvita Dutt

After two slightly disappointing songs, Sachin-Jigar get to make a wedding song for the film. Now, this song seems to be one of those disappointing songs which grow with time, because that’s what happened with me. I found it a bit weird at first, but in the successive listens, I started to like it bit by bit. Now this is purely subjective, but I still think Sachin-Jigar didn’t try to make this song (or any song from this film) complicated and layered, and that’s why this is happening. The songs are straightforward, something we hardly get from Sachin-Jigar, and that’s why we might be disappointed at first. Anyway, the composition is a peppy wedding number, complete with Punjabi phrases and effective Indian wedding arrangements. The hookline seems very cheesy at first, but becomes catchy later on. The beginning is quite entertaining, with those dialogues, and after that, Jonita’s weird programmed voice singing something gibberish, I believe. That is one of the best parts of the song. The female chorus too, is very entertaining, and the word “ponga pandit” specifically caught my interest. Lyricist Anvita Dutt has utilised it so nicely. As the hookline gets closer though, the song increases its heard-before-ness, and it becomes an ordinary wedding song by the time the hookline arrives, though it is catchy. The antara is no better. Vocals are entertaining, especially Jonita’s, and the female backing vocalists. Divya gets the same part to sing twice, and he sounds good too, but it is the composition of his parts that sounds too flat. Arrangements consist of digital beats accompanied by Indian wedding instruments like the shehnaai (wonderful interlude on that!), dhols etc. Anvita Dutt’s lyrics are very innovative at parts and very ordinary at parts. A confusing song! You don’t know whether you like it or not!

Rating: 3.5/5

 

4. Kho Diya

Singer ~ Sachin Sanghvi, Lyrics by ~ Priya Saraiya

Now comes what I’ve been expecting from Sachin-Jigar ever since ‘Meri Pyaari Bindu’ released and I loved all the songs. After that, frankly, I didn’t love any Sachin-Jigar song as much as I loved the song ‘Maana Ke Hum Yaar Nahin’, in any of their albums that released. But now, in ‘Bhoomi’, they come up with a deserving opponent for ‘Maana Ke Hum…’ with this song, another ghazal, and in my opinion, even better than ‘Maana Ke Hum…’ itself. I’ll explain why. The composition is genuinely ghazal-like, as in an actual, authentic ghazal! Though that song was also a ghazal, it did have minor Bollywood-ish touches. But in this song, Sachin-Jigar do not bow down to peer pressure in order to make a Bollywood-friendly song. The song still does carry many nuances of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s style of composition though. I sincerely hope SLB catches this song and ropes Sachin-Jigar in for his next project! The antara is one of the most beautiful compositions I’ve heard in a while. The arrangements too, are amazing, with soothing tablas, divine manjeeras, beautiful Guitars, and scintillating strings that provide an atmosphere of love and divinity. The water drop sounds, so characteristic of SLB, sound beautiful. Sachin Sanghvi says this is his first solo song in Bollywood (He also sang a duet with Shreya Ghoshal in ‘Jayantabhai Ki Luv Story’ before this), and he does his solo debut in a smashing manner! His voice has that amazing metallic touch, which people might mistake for programming, but it is his raw voice! Priya Saraiya’s lyrics are yet again, one of the most brilliant she’s written this year. A lovely number that is surely going to stay with me for a long time!!

Rating: 5/5

 

5. Daag

Singer ~ Sukhwinder Singh, Lyrics by ~ Priya Saraiya

The pathos enters now, as it always does. Of course, because this is an Omung Kumar film after all. There has to be an overtly dramatic sad song. And that happens to be this song. Now, the composition is really good, if I have to judge as per it’s genre. But as an individual song, this doesn’t take me anywhere. After the magic that the former song had me possessed with, this song falls flat! The duo try to lift it up with an intriguing and mysterious arrangement (this guitar riffs do the trick), but how much can a song be able to be saved by good arrangements if the composition isn’t appealing? Sukhwinder adds to the tedium, with his heavy voice, and it sounds very uncomfortable. Even though the composition is so poignant, it all sounds fake due to the overcooked nature of the music and vocals. The hookline itself too, is very tedious. It sounds like something that should have released around 2008. Sadly, this one isn’t memorable at all!

Rating: 3/5

 

6. Jai Mata Di

Singers ~ Ajay Gogavale & Sanjay Dutt, Lyrics by ~ Vayu Srivastava & Utkarsh Naithani

To wrap up the album, Sachin-Jigar present a devotional song. Now Ganeshotsav has ended, and Navratri is about to start, and with the film opening just one day after Navratri starts, it seems an apt decision to include a song entitled ‘Jai Mata Di’ in the album. Now, the song is primarily a very dramatic devotional song again, to make it fit with Omung Kumar standards of drama. However, it fares a bit better than that one, thanks to the divine touch. The composition is amazing, and Sachin-Jigar mould themselves into a very trademark Ajay-Atul mode to compose this one. Actually, if Ajay-Atul had composed for the ‘Sarkar’ series, and the chants would’ve been ‘Jai Mata Di’ instead of ‘Govinda’, then this would have been the perfect background score for the ‘Sarkar’ franchise. To add to the Ajay-Atul feel, Sachin-Jigar even rope in Ajay as the lead vocalist. As always, he aces the song. Sanjay Dutt starts the song with a mantra, bt his interventions throughout the actual song when he sings “Jai Maa Jai Maa’, sound better. The arrangements are good, and Especially the strings are amazing. Other sounds like the tabla, and the pathos-filled composition make it sound like yet another SLB song, a la ‘Gajanana’ (Bajirao Mastani), and ‘Dola Re Dola’ (Devdas). This song isn’t something to enjoy with your earphones, but something to experience in theatres!

Rating: 3.5/5


Bhoomi is a great example of an album composed by talented composers, but which suffers due to their inexperience in the genre of drama. Sachin-Jigar have composed for drama films very less; they usually go for rom-coms or musicals, but in this one, their discomfort is visible while composing for such a film. They still do try to add their own elements into the album, like the quirkiness of ‘Will You Marry Me’, which diffuses into thin air later on in the song. The best song in definitely ‘Kho Diya’, which I’m sure you will agree with, and so might they themselves. Anyway, it is one of those rare occasions where Sachin-Jigar disappoint, and it will surely pass!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 2.5 + 4 + 3.5 + 5 + 3 + 3.5 = 21.5

Album Percentage: 71.67%

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: Kho Diya > Lag Ja Gale > Will You Marry Me = Jai Mata Di > Daag > Trippy Trippy

 

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

EK COMPOSER, DO COMPOSER, TEEN COMPOSER!! (LUCKNOW CENTRAL – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Arjunna Harjaie, Rochak Kohli, Tanishk Bagchi, Sukhwinder Singh & Mychael Danna
♪ Lyrics by: Kumaar, Adheesh Verma & Sukhwinder Singh
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 18th August 2017
♪ Movie Releases On: 15th September 2017

Lucknow Central Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Lucknow Central is a Bollywood drama film, starring Farhan Akhtar, Gippy Grewal, Inaamulhaq, Deepak Dobriyal , Diana Penty, Rajesh Sharma and Ronit Roy. The film has been directed by Ranjit Tiwari, and produced by Viacom18 Motion Pictures, Monisha Advani, Madhu C. Bhojwani and Nikkhil Advani. The plotline of this film closely resembles that of recently released ‘Qaidi Band’, and it is obviously a coincidence of the worst case. There is a difference though. The music here, is done by multiple composers. Leading the way is youngster Arjunna Harjaie, with three songs, and after he impressed so much in ‘Titoo MBA’, I cant wait to hear what he did here. Tanishk Bagchi has two songs too, and one is a remake, because he is the remake specialist according to T-Series. Guest composer Rochak Kohli presents one song in the album. All three of these composers have proved their mettle in the past, and it goes without saying that when it is an Advani production, the film is bound to have good if not great music. Also, I think Farhan Akhtar himself looks into the music of his films, and so it is bound to be great. Comparisons between this film and ‘Qaidi Band’ are sure to happen, but I noticed ‘Qaidi Band’ relied much more on the music, and this will rely much more on plot points. It reflects even in the number of songs — that film had nine, while this one has five and one version. So let’s see if this album supports the film!


1. Kaavaan Kaavaan

Singer ~ Divya Kumar, Chorus ~ Shivek, Anubhav, Aditya, Shubham, Umesh, Veljon, Vishal and Sarthak From Asm Academy, Original Composition by ~ Sukhwinder Singh & Mychael Danna, Music Recreated by ~ Arjunna Harjaie, Original Lyrics by ~ Sukhwinder Singh, New Lyrics by ~ Kumaar

When Bollywood starts remaking songs from Hollywood movies (doesn’t matter that the song is Hindi, though) you would think things are finally messed up for real. However, it is a pleasant surprise when the remake actually turns out to be good, and quite innovative. Arjuna Harjai (now spelling his name as Arjunna Harjaie) returns after a year and a half, after the song from ‘Do Lafzon Ki Kahani’ last year, and gets the opportunity to recreate this quite popular Punjabi number ‘Ajj Mera Jee Karda’ (Monsoon Wedding). The original had been composed jointly by Sukhwinder Singh and the film’s composer Mychael Danna. Now this remake is quite a good one. The composition has been kept intact for most of the song, with Arjunna having composed a new prelude to the song, with a haunting tune that immediately gets you interested. The original composition is good, and the “Kaavaan Kaavaan” portions, which I found irritating in the original, actually sound good here. The thing that makes this remake worthwhile though, is the amazing music. Arjunna equips a booming dhol rhythm (Vishal Dande), that has the required effect on the listener, making him or her groove to it happily. The shehnaai gives a wonderful traditional feel to the song. Strings and dafli have been used occasionally to infuse a strain of pathos through the song, and especially the antara (incorporated from the original itself) is beautiful, both in tune and its arrangements. The numerous tempo changes would normally be very confusing to a listener, but here, Arjunna manages them so seamlessly, it is unbelievable. As for the vocals, Divya Kumar steps into Sukhwinder Singh’s shoes without a problem, but because he does so, it evokes memories of Divya’s own ‘Jee Karda’ (Badlapur) in the first line of the song. 😄 And then a layman can easily say, “Hey! It’s a copy!” Because he wouldn’t know that ‘Ajj Mera Jee Karda’ came before ‘Jee Karda’. But I commend the makers for firmly sticking with Divya’s voice anyway, since he has sung amazingly — the Punjabi-ness comes across beautifully through his voice, and he especially does the emotional portions very nicely. Kumaar’s additional lyrics are good too, adding on Sukhwinder’s original. An apt remake, with an amazing rhythm, and changes that do not disrupt the original song’s integrity.

Rating: 4/5

 

2. Meer-E-Kaarwaan

Singers ~ Amit Mishra & Neeti Mohan, Music by ~ Rochak Kohli, Lyrics by ~ Adheesh Verma

Rochak Kohli enters the soundtrack next, with his sole song, which happens to be a wonderful Sufi duet, with, again, a strain of pathos running through it. The composer doesn’t usually get to do such songs, but he did impress us with the amazingly soothing ‘Rozana’ (Naam Shabana) earlier this year, so it is no surprise that he ended up composing this one so well. The composition is so fresh, and quite like the Pritam school of alternative rock, it mixes Sufi sounds with a templated rock rhythm. Without the Sufi, the rock would’ve sounded incomplete, and vice versa. So it is like a beautiful combination that couldn’t be avoided. The antara is beautiful, and I must mention Neeti here, because she has sung her antara splendidly, and it is a delight to hear her in that whispery voice of hers. Her co-singer, Amit Mishra, builds on where Pritam left him off in ‘Bulleya’ (Ae Dil Hai Mushkil), and here, he makes an effort to remain soft and not as energetic as he was there, and the result is excellent. The arrangements are rich as well, the dholaks providing the authentic Sufi touch, while the amazing guitar work (Keba Jeremiah) and strokes (Tapas Roy) are one of the highlights of the song. The choruses at the end and in the second interlude, have been composed beautifully. Also, there’s a pause after the second interlude, where one thinks the song ends, but it seems Rochak has more to give us! The lyrics by Adheesh Verma are great too! A song that wonderfully mixes elements of Pritam and Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy styles of composition, and a beautiful Sufi-Rock arrangement!

Rating: 4.5/5

 

3. Teen Kabootar

Singers ~ Mohit Chauhan & Divya Kumar, Additional Vocals ~ Aflatunes, Music by ~ Arjunna Harjaie, Lyrics by ~ Kumaar, Rap Written & Performed by ~ Raftaar

Arjunna returns to the album with his second song, this time, a fun a cappella number full of onomatopoeia. The beginning itself gets your interest peaked and you listen closely right from the beginning, where the singers do an innovative sargam, that sounds excellent. The composition by Arjunna, yet again, resembles the style of a cappella that Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy are well-known for, and they have succeeded with it in songs like ‘Maston Ka Jhund’ (Bhaag Milkha Bhaag). The composition doesn’t appeal to you at once though. It is the various vocal rhythms and sound effects that help you to find it appealing. The vocalists do an amazing job. Mohit’s metallic voice is the perfect choice for the song, and when he goes seamlessly from low to high notes, it sounds wonderful! Divya usually takes the high octaves and does so here as well. These lead singers definitely do well, but the backing vocalists also provide a very fun element to the song! The interlude where they sing “Chaaku Chaaku Leke Jaa..” is so fun to listen to! Even Raftaar’s rap adds an element of fun to the song. About the arrangements, whatever I say will be less. Amazing percussions (Taufiq Qureshi’s Mumbai Stamp) and guitar work makes the song appealing to listen to, and as mentioned before, Arjunna’s amazing use of the a cappella style in a desi way makes this song sound very unconventional. Kumaar’s situational lyrics too are clever and serve the purpose well. This song might be Arjunna’s ticket to many more Bollywood films which need quirky music!!

Rating: 4/5

 

4. Rangdaari

Singer ~ Arijit Singh, Backing Vocals by ~ Arjunna Harjaie, Music by ~ Arjunna Harjaie, Lyrics by ~ Kumaar

Arijit Singh has started to get songs in every film yet again; there was a kind of low phase intermittently. The only difference is that before, it used to appear right at the beginning of soundtracks. Now it has changed. And in this album too, we see an Arijit Singh song popping up as the fourth song on the soundtrack. The composition is amazingly beautiful. Arjunna Harjaie composes a wonderful Sufi tune, which is familiar to the ears, but soothing nonetheless. The hookline is something you’ve heard time and again, but still works its magic to soothe you down. Especially that line “tu laagey mujhe dushman si..” has been composed very beautifully. The antaras are beautiful, and the whole structure of the song reminds me of the recently released ‘Bairaagi’ (Bareilly Ki Barfi) which sadly, didn’t work for me as well as this. Arjunna decorates his magical composition with stellar musical instruments. First of all, he gives the genuine Sufi touch with the dholaks (Aanchal Goud), which sound wonderful and very earthy. But it is the interlude, in which he introduces a wonderful flute piece (Shubham Shirule), accompanied by a MIND-BLOWING sargam by Arijit (or is it Arjunna?). And it is then that the song gives off beautiful Rahmanish vibes, but also gets its own place in your heart. The Duff rhythms do sound too heard-before, but they’re ignorable due to the wonderful things Arjunna has added besides that. The ethnic strings sound amazing here, and as always, Tapas Roy has done magic with them. The vocals by Arijit are top-notch, but it is his everyday composition and he aces it as was expected. The lyrics are very impressive here as well. A beautiful Sufi song, with a familiar sound, but still impressed me because of its innocence!

Rating: 4.5/5

 

5. Kaavaan Kaavaan (Remix)

Singers ~ Sukhwinder Singh & Renesa, Original Music by ~ Sukhwinder Singh & Mychael Danna, Music Recreated by ~ Tanishk Bagchi, Original Lyrics by ~ Sukhwinder Singh, New Lyrics by ~ Kumaar

So ‘Kaavaan Kaavaan’, the opening track of the album, gets a ‘Remix’, or so T-Series calls it. But this isn’t the remix of Arjunna Harjaie’s song. It is the remix of the original song from ‘Monsoon Wedding’, done by Tanishk Bagchi, the third composer of the album. Also, I wouldn’t call it a remix at all, since it might just be another remake of the song by Tanishk, but Arjunna’s must have gotten chosen as the main version. This one is merely Tanishk’s original take on this song. That having been said, I can say Tanishk has worked very hard on this one. He tries to add digital beats wherever possible to make the song sound fresh, but some places it just doesn’t work, especially after the Indian arrangements that led the Arjunna version. Not that Tanishk hasn’t added dhols and all, but the emotion of the song doesn’t come across as well in this one. For a dance track though, this is better. Tanishk also ropes in Sukhwinder himself to re-dub the song, and that’s definitely a plus point. Renesa does the female portions of the song, and she sounds awesome. What bugged me was the hookline, where I found the backing vocalists too loud. A more zesty remake, but not more effective.

Rating: 3.5/5

 

6. Baaki Rab Pe Chhod De

Singers ~ Brijesh Shandilya, Vayu, Tanishk Bagchi & Arman Hasan, Music by ~ Tanishk Bagchi, Lyrics by ~ Kumaar

Tanishk’s second song serves as the caboose for this album, closing the album on a very lively and bright note. I say this because right from the beginning of the song, you know it is going to lift your spirits. It starts quite similarly to ‘Raula’ (Jab Harry Met Sejal), with lively plucked strings. The composition is fun to listen to, too, but gets slightly disjointed in the latter parts. It starts off brilliantly though, and the hookline is delightful. The arrangements here too, are mainly digital beats, but this time they succeed in remaking the song livelier. Tanishk’s trademark liveliness comes across well through this song, and it is a thing to wonder, why he spends time in doing some remakes. The singers do justice to the song, the lead singer, Brijesh doing an exceptionally good job. Little Arman Hasan, who we heard in ‘Kankad’ (Shubh Mangal Saavdhan), singing alongside his father Raja Hasan, does well too. Vayu has probably done some backing vocals, so I couldn’t really place him in the song! Kumaar’s lyrics, are amazing. He writes some amazingly positive lines in this one too, taking the support of various scientific inventors like Thomas Edison and Graham Bell. Lively song, but could’ve been slightly better!

Rating: 4/5


Lucknow Central is one of those rare multicomposer albums that is a delight to listen to. Well, I guess when each composer knows what he is best at, and delivers the best of whatever he is best at, with the proper supervision by the director and producer, the multicomposer album can also turn out well. Ek Composer, Do Composer, Teen Composer, But No Sign That This Album is Multicomposer!!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 4 + 4.5 + 4 + 4.5 + 3.5 + 4 = 24.5

Album Percentage: 81.67%

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: Rangdaari = Meer-E-Kaarwaan > Kaavaan Kaavaan = Baaki Rab Pe Chhod De = Teen Kabootar > Kaavaan Kaavaan (Remix)

 

Remake Counter:
No. Of Remakes: 31 (from previous albums) + 02 {counting both different takes on ‘Ajj Mera Jee Karda’} = 33

 

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

A TRIPLE-DEBUT TREAT TOILET!! (TOILET: EK PREM KATHA – Music Review)

Music Album Details
♪ Music by: Vickey Prasad, Manas-Shikhar & Sachet-Parampara
♪ Lyrics by: Siddharth-Garima
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 13th July 2017
♪ Movie Releases On: 11th August 2017

Toilet – Ek Prem Katha Album Cover

 

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

To buy this album on iTunes CLICK HERE


Toilet – Ek Prem Katha is an upcoming Bollywood satire, starring Alshay Kumar, Bhumi Pednekar, Divyendu Sharma and Anupam Kher,  directed by Shree Narayan Singh, and produced by Aruna Bhatia, Shital Bhatia, Abundantia, Viacom Motion Pictures, Arjun N. Kapoor and Hitesh Thakkar. The film comes in support of PM Modi’s ‘Swacchh Bharat Abhiyaan’ by raising fingers at the issue of open defecation, prevalent in remote and underdeveloped parts of the country. Now it is a really good topic, but somehow, by the trailer and promos, I am not sure whether it will be carried out in a humorous way without looking dramatic. Anyway, the music, very surprisingly, has been scored by three debutant music composers, two duos and one individual. Vickey Prasad, Manas-Shikhar and Sachet-Parampara are the five lucky people who got to debut in Bollywood with an Akshay Kumar album, and how wonderful an opportunity is that!! I hope they make great use of it though, and provide us with a nice and clean ‘Toilet’! {Sorry for the desperate joke!}


1. Hans Mat Pagli

Singers ~ Sonu Nigam & Shreya Ghoshal, Music by ~ Vickey Prasad

The first newcomer starts off the album with a cute romantic song which sends off a great rural-setting vibe. The song’s composition is nothing innovative as such, but it still manages to hook the listeners, since it is so cute and such a throwback to Bollywood of the 90s. The only grouse I have with the composition is that the hookline sounds a lot like the antara of ‘Pardesi Pardesi’ (Raja Hindustani), which would be where the 90s vibes are coming from. The song is structured quite oddly, with a male mukhda, a male antara, and then a female mukhda followed by a female antara. Why couldn’t they just club the mukhdas together and the antaras together? That way, the listener would get some variation from male to female and then back to a male voice. Anyway, as they wish. The composition for all these stanzas is very cute again. The recording seems a bit faulty and raw, but that’s probably deliberate? The arrangements are again, not anything new or innovative, but that soft Qawwali setting to the hookline gives a soothing feeling, and the dholaks have been played beautifully, as are the plucked string instruments throughout the song, and the guitar itself. There is a wonderful rapid tabla piece before Sonu sings his antara. The rhythm is heard before, but the cuteness of the composition helps you listen to such a rhythm yet again without complaining. The vocals send you back to 2005-2007, when Sonu-Shreya duets were the thing. Every director wanted a Sonu-Shreya duet in their film; sadly, nowadays, that happens only in films where the director knows only about the old singers, and hence his music ends up sounding outdated. But here, there is no datedness whatsoever. It is more like a nostalgia. Both singers do an amazing job, though I somewhere thought that Shreya was struggling with such a high-pitched line in the antara. Siddharth-Garima choose the perfect line for the hookline; it increases the cuteness quotient of the song. The rest of the lyrics are cute too, but not too innovative. A good song to start the album with, but it has its own faults.
Rating: 4/5

 

2. Bakheda

Singers ~ Sukhwinder Singh & Sunidhi Chauhan, Music by ~ Vickey Prasad

Vickey has the second song to his credit as well, making him the main composer on this album. This song takes a more lively route, but stays a romantic song. As soon as it starts, the folksy vibe hits you, and you are also relieved that Vickey has used a more modern recording style for this one; it proves that the recording was deliberately done that way for the previous song. The composition is a lively one, but the hookline is really a letdown — it is so staid and bland. Also, we have heard such a hook so many times where the mukhda builds up to it, and then after a pause, the hookline takes the song forward. The antaras are very well composed. Sukhwinder, at his usual energetic self, renders the song with ease, and creates a good impact on the listeners. The problem lies in Sunidhi’s vocals, which seem less energetic as usual. It really sounds like she wasn’t interested, or maybe the pitch was too low. That makes her portion sound very odd, despite the beautiful composition of the antara. The arrangements are lively folksy arrangements with the percussion leading, and a nice plucked instrument entertaining throughout. A sarangi can also be made out occasionally. The percussion is the star of the song though. Siddharth-Garima, again, write an effective song to go with the film, but the impact of the lyrics doesn’t reach the audience out of the film. A functional song, but won’t really stay with you for long.
Rating: 3/5

 

3. Gori Tu Latth Maar

Singers ~ Sonu Nigam & Palak Muchhal, Backing Vocals ~ Umesh Joshi, Vijay Dhuri, Swapnil Godbole, Karan Kagale & Rishikesh Patel, Music by ~ Manas-Shikhar

The Rahman vibe hits you as soon as this one starts with the beautiful chimey music at the beginning. Manas-Shikhar, another debutant duo, enter the album with this song, and with only one song to prove their worth, they seize the opportunity and let me tell you, they make the best use of it, better than both of the other composer teams on this album! They employ a very lively setting to a supposed-to-be sad song. It is the festival of Holi, but of course, Bhumi Pednekar’s character is mad at Akshay’s character, because of we know what! So this is a situational song, in which Akshay pleads to her for forgiving him. Against the backdrop of a Holi song, a very emotional song, and I’ve heard something like this for the first time. Siddharth-Garima’s lyrics reveal all the emotion in the best way possible. Now let’s go back to Manas-Shikhar’s music. Their composition is just so catchy, especially the mukhda, which should be catchy in order to hook the listeners right away. It sounds like something straight out of a Rahman song. The hookline also succeeds in being a very beautiful, and catchy line. The antara is the female part of the song, and it has a very beautiful tune as well, which will remind you of the 90s songs, that used to slow down in the middle for the female parts. There’s a nice tempo-rise towards the end, in which we hear the already popular “Radhe Radhe” chorus. Sonu Nigam renders the tune with such brilliance, knowing when to emote which emotion, and wonderful aalaaps. Palak too, sings beautifully, and the brilliant composition of her portion helps her do that wonderfully. The arrangements are ever fluctuating, with the emotional and soft sound from the mukhda alternating with the usual Holi sound of the dholaks and other percussions. The shehnaai is played in a very beautiful tune. Those bells at the beginning are the most beautiful though. A wholesome song that defines what Bollywood is all about — colour, festivity, emotion and dance! Oh, and congratulations to Manas-Shikhar for a smashing debut!
Rating: 5/5

 

4. Subha Ki Train

Singers ~ Sachet Tandon & Parampara Thakur, Backing Vocals ~ Sukriti Kakar & Rituraj Mohanty, Music by ~ Sachet-Parampara

The last of the debutants bring up the finale of the album, which happens to be yet another cute romantic song. This one is a little less folksy than the others, but it does have the effect that it should. Sachet Tandon and Parampara Thakur have composed a lilting melody, that, though situational, and very predictable, still makes you smile and feel good. The prelude gave off some vibes of “Tere Sang Yaara” (Rustom). The mukhda is very sweet and simple, and instantly grabs your attention. The letdown here is the hook, which is as staid and heard-before as imaginable. But the antara is mind-blowing; especially the second line of it. The arrangements too, follow a very simple template, with that cute Duff rhythm, and in a wonderful second interlude, the flutes assortment and strings orchestra just mystifies. The first interlude with the mouth organ is splendid too. Sachet and Parampara handle the vocals themselves, and strangely enough, employ Rituraj Mohanty and Sukriti Kakar as backing vocalists for the aalaaps. Parampara’s is a voice to look out for, while Sachet’s voice just blends in with the multitude of new male voices we have in Bollywood, other than Arijit. 😅 Again, Siddharth-Garima stick to situational yet catchy lyrics; the hook lyrics made me smile. A good finale, and a promising debut, but not a song that will stay in my head for more than a month.
Rating: 3.5/5


Toilet – Ek Prem Katha is an album just like Akshay Kumar movie albums usually are — fun, vibrant and groovy, but with an overbearing romantic theme. What makes it even more special is that all the composers are debutants and it is commendable of the makers to have accepted the three for a film which will reach so many people! Seizing the opportunity, all three newcomers do a good job, and especially Manas-Shikhar do an amazing one. The album is a triple-debut treat!!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 4 + 3 + 5 + 3.5 = 15.5

Album Percentage: 77.5%

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: Gori Tu Latth Maar > Hans Mat Pagli > Subha Ki Train > Bakheda

 

Which is your favourite song from Toilet – Ek Prem Katha? Please vote for it below! Thanks! 🙂