DECEMBER 2017 ROUND-UP (FUKREY RETURNS, FIRANGI, TERA INTEZAAR & MONSOON SHOOTOUT – Mini Music Reviews)

It is time for my Round-Up for December 2017, which is slightly delayed due to me being so busy, but better late than never, right?

December 2017 Round-Up

This Round-Up includes the following music reviews:

1) Fukrey Returns – Prem-Hardeep, Jasleen Kaur Royal, Sumeet Bellary, Shaarib-Toshi, Gulraj Singh, IshQ Bector, Shree D & Laxmikant-Pyarelal

2) Firangi – Jatinder Shah

3) Tera Intezaar – Raaj Aashoo

4) Monsoon Shootout – Rochak Kohli, Viveick-Mayur, Chinmay Harshe, Chetan Rao & Vikram Shastry

The music review for “Tiger Zinda Hai” will be posted separately.


♦ Fukrey Returns, But Ram Sampath Doesn’t! – FUKREY RETURNS Music Review

♪ Music by: Prem-Hardeep, Jasleen Kaur Royal, Sumeet Bellary, Shaarib-Toshi, IshQ Bector, Shree D, Gulraj Singh & Laxmikant-Pyarelal
♪ Lyrics by: Kumaar, Late Anand Bakshi, Aditya Sharma, Satya Khare, Raftaar, Rohit Sharma, Arsalaan Akhoon, Shree D, Mrighdeep Singh Lamba & Vipul Vig
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company
♪ Music Released On: 16th November 2017
♪ Movie Released On: 8th December 2017

 

Listen to the songs: Saavn


So Fukrey has returned. Sadly, the man behind “Fukrey”s enjoyable music, Ram Sampath has not returned, and after his underwhelming stint in ‘Raees’, he doesn’t get a chance to bounce back with a franchise that was initially his. Anywho, let’s judge on what we have been given.
Prem-Hardeep, the original composers of ‘Kala Chashma’ before Badshah remade it in ‘Baar Baar Dekho’, get a chance now, to ruin somebody else’s song. Laxmikant-Pyarelal’s ‘O Meri Mehbooba’ (Dharam Veer) gets ‘remade’ into Mehbooba, a banal club song which starts and ends with the Fukras being rejected by a random girl in the club, who happens to be singing in Neha Kakkar’s voice. Yasser Desai gets one line that repeats over and over again, and it is frankly the best line of the song. Raftaar’s rap is too stereotypical. Jasleen Kaur Royal’s Peh Gaya Khalara, though fitting into her now-overused Punjabi dance number template, is quite enjoyable, with the sweet vocals by herself and Divya Kumar, Akasa Singh & Akanksha Bhandari accompanying them. The arrangements are what make the track more enjoyable, and also the quirky lyrics.
Familiar territory is entered in Ishq Bector & Shree D’s semiclassical Raina, which, though quite soothing, gets tedious due to its length (it is the only song on the album over three minutes long, and goes up to over four minutes long!) The arrangements help propel it forward though, and also Shree’s vocals. Shaarib-Toshi enter the Bollywood scene after a long time with a delightful Punjabi melody, Ishq De Fanniyar. The male version by Shaarib is great, but the Female Version has all the feels, hence scores higher. The beautiful melody seems like a wonderful sequel to the first movie’s ‘Ambarsariya’. The lyrics are sweet as well, not to mention amazing accordions in the arrangements.
The techno sounds come along with the last three songs, bunched up together, out of which two are by Sumeet Bellary (composed for ‘Fuddu’ last year), and one is by (another person who re-enters Bollywood as a composer after a loooooong time, longer than Shaarib-Toshi), Gulraj Singh.
Sumeet’s two songs rely on weird techno gimmicks, which fail to propel the songs forward. Tu Mera Bhai Nahi Hai is a quirky friendship anthem, but is pulled down by lack of catchiness in both music and composition. Bura Na Maano Bholi Hai is like a title song, but gets all over the place in no time. The arrangements are slightly better here. Both songs are sung by Gandharv Sachdev, wit Shahid Mallya joining him in the latter song, and aren’t all that well sung.
Gulraj does well in his title song, Fukrey Returns, with a nice catchy musical loop, and heavy use of brass and techno sounds which makes his song sound even better. Siddharth Mahadevan on the vocals is a bonus.


Not as great as the first movie’s album, but still a commendable album considering the amount of new talent on there. But nevertheless, I wish Ram Sampath had returned!

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 2.5 + 3.5 + 3.5 + 4 + 4 + 3.5 + 3 + 3.5 = 27.5

Album Percentage: 68.75%

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: Ishq De Fanniyar = Ishq De Fanniyar (Female) > Peh Gaya Khalara = Tu Mera Bhai Nahi Hai = Raina = Fukrey Returns > Bura Na Maano Bholi Hai > Mehbooba

Remake Counter:
No. Of Remakes: 43 (from previous albums) + 01 (from Fukrey Returns) = 44


♦ Quite A Desi Album! : FIRANGI Music Review

♪ Music by: Jatinder Shah
♪ Lyrics by: Dr. Devendra Kafir, Ashraf Ali & Krishna Bhardwaj
♪ Music Label: Zee Music Company
♪ Music Released On: 21st November 2017
♪ Movie Released On: 1st December 2017

 

Listen to the songs: Saavn


The song with almost the least amount of Punjabi words (second only to ‘Gulbadan’, which comes later on in the album) in its lyrics, Oye Firangi, starts the album off, and Jatinder Shah steals your heart right away. The charming melody immediately gets you grooving — thanks to a little EDM twist in the hookline — and though it is very simple, it is amazing thanks to the programming, and Sunidhi’s marvellous voice. There comes a British-era ballroom style orchestral portion at the end, but I wish the composer had extended that into another antara instead of ending the song with it! Another charming but heard-before melody, Sahiba Russ Gayiya, starts from where ‘Channa Mereya’ ended, with a similar structure and arrangement. Rahat’s voice is a boon to the song, and it’s the first song of his in a long time that doesn’t get on my nerves.(Ahem, ‘Mere Rashke Qamar’!) I love the way he pronounces the hookline. The Unplugged Version sung by Shafqat Amanat Ali, is funnily named ‘Sahiba (Male)’, as if Rahat’s version wasn’t by a male singer. The song itself is an improvement on the original, in that we get to hear Shafqat’s impeccable aalaaps, and though the choice of Shafqat doesn’t make it sound less like a Pritam song in general [Shafqat is just as much of a Pritam camp singer as Rahat is!] it surely does sound less like ‘Channa Mereya’, because the electric guitars have been toned down. Acoustic guitars play the larger role here. However some factors make both versions balance out at the end.
If ‘Sahiba’ had ‘Channa Mereya’ written all over it, Tu Jit Jawna has ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’s title song all, and I mean ALL over it! Daler Mehndi, who I wish had sung the BMB number too, sings this one, and so it is quite bearable, but otherwise, it falls flat and sounds hollow in its emotion. It is also lyrically a counterpart to ‘Oye Firangi’, except Daler paaji doesn’t call him a ‘Firangi’ (foreigner), while Sunidhi did.
Gulbadan is a Qawwali-esque number, sung by Mamta Sharma. Good to hear her sing a different kind of song, though I’m sure the video will be the same kind of Bollywood ‘item number’. The hookline is greatly composed, with amazing arrangements by Shah, but again, falling into the too much tried-and-tested category of arrangements. I guess the best that comes out of this song is hearing Mamta Sharma’s gentle voice, because she thankfully hasn’t been made to sing in the annoying loud voice of hers.
But the album’s best is the wonderful folksy number, Sajna Sohne Jiha, which transports you back to the Punjab of the olden days. Wadali Bros’ Qawwali ‘Ve Sone Diya Kangna’ has been given a nice reinterpretation by Shah, and it works so well. The rhythms at the beginning really bring out the song’s folksiness, and Jyoti Nooran’s strong voice helps propel it to the finish line, where it emerges the winner compared to the other songs of the album!


A very desi album to the film ‘Firangi!’

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 3.5 + 3.5 + 4 + 3.5 + 3.5 + 5 = 23

Album Percentage: 76.67%

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: Sajna Sohne Jiha > Sahiba Russ Gayiya (Shafqat) > Oye Firangi = Tu Jit Jawna = Gulbadan = Sahiba Russ Gayiya



♦ No Intezaar for This Album! : TERA INTEZAAR Music Review

♪ Music By: Raaj Aashoo
♪ Lyrics by: Shabbir Ahmed
♪ Music Label: T-Series
♪ Music Released On: 11th November 2017
♪ Movie Released On: 1st December 2017

 

Listen to the songs: Saavn


After a long time (or is it the first time?), one single composer gets a chance to compose an album for a film starring Sunny Leone. Somehow, she debuted smack in the middle of the multicomposer craze and so, got mainly multiple composers to compose for all her films! Raaj Aashoo handles the album.
The title track, titled Intezaar Title, instead of a more apt ‘Tera Intezaar’ (Obviously, because that’s the film’s name), is a dreary 2000s melody, sung by Shreya Ghoshal too, as if she is still in her debut year. Adding to the ennui, is the Qawwali-ish chorus. Raaj’s composition is good, but dated. The arrangement is the best thing about the song, especially the flute. Another very typically 90s melody, Khali Khali Dil, sees Payal Dev and Armaan Malik at their clichéd best. The digital sounds do not help make it more ‘modern’ or anything, and even the harmonica fails to create any impact. Quite a similar sound follows in the dreary Mehfooz, another song straight out of Nadeem-Shravan’s music-bank. The guitar work makes it sound like a version of Mithoon’s ‘Sanam Re’ title track, sans the tablas. Yasser gets a version, and, sounding like Arijit as always, manages to make it sound genuinely interesting. The arrangements here too make this song much more interesting than ‘Khali Khali Dil’. The song appears in two more versions, one by Palak Muchhal and the other by a new singer named Hrishikesh Chury. Palak’s 2½ minute long version fares better than Hrishikesh’s normal length one, because of the pleasant arrangements. Also, Hrishikesh tries to sound like Kumar Sanu.
The best song on the album, Abhagi Piya Ki, becomes the best only because the others don’t deserve it. It appears in two versions, a banal one sung jarringly by Kanika Kapoor and Raja Hasan, and a slightly better version sung much better by Payal Dev and Javed Ali. The tablas that went missing from ‘Mehfooz’ seem to have come to this song, and they play in surplus. The semiclassical touch to the song is good, but the 90s melancholia seems to have followed the composer like a thundercloud whenever he sat to compose for this film.
The only song that does not sound anything like a 90s song is Sexy Baby Girl, and it doesn’t work because it tries to sound uber-cool with its lead singer Swati Sharrma, like always, trying to add unnecessary style to her words, resulting in a disaster. Also, the lyrics are cringeworthy.


This is not an album anyone would have waited for. 

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 3 + 2 + 2.5 + 2.5 + 2 + 3 + 3.5 + 3 = 21.5

Album Percentage: 53.75%

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: Abhagi Piya Ki (Javed/Payal) > Abhagi Piya Ki = Intezaar Title = Sexy Baby Girl > Mehfooz = Mehfooz (Palak) > Mehfooz (Hrishikesh) = Khali Khali Dil



♦ Surprising Monsoon in Winter!!: MONSOON SHOOTOUT Music Review

♪ Music by: Rochak Kohli, Viveick Rajagopalan, Mayur Narvekar, Chinmay Harshe, Chetan Rao & Vikram Shastry
♪ Lyrics by: Sumant Vadhera, Kartik Krishnan, Deepak Ramona, Chinmay Harshe, Rohit Bhasy, Neeraj Sharma, Vinit Gulati, Nidhi Gulati
♪ Music Label: Saregama
♪ Music Released On: 19th December 2017
♪ Movie Released On: 15th December 2017

 

Listen to the songs: Saavn


Rochak gets two songs, and reminds us why he’s one composer that keeps popping up in numerous albums scattered over the year’s span. It is because of his strong melodies. Pal is a cherishable melody which, though predictable, does give you goosebumps, and makes you want it to rain. Arijit’s heart-touching rendition is enough to make anyone fall for the song. On the other hand Miliyo Re is a very Sachin-Jigar-ish romantic song, with Monali and Rochak behind the mic, with vocals that aren’t amazing, but are functional. The composition is good but very commonplace; not as distinct as Rochak’s other songs this year.
Viveick-Mayur present their only song Andheri Raat next, a haunting song with weird Marathi rap, and awesome Punjabi-flavoured male vocals. Neha Bhasin kills it behind the mic, as does her co-singer, Rajiv Sundaresan, doing the aforementioned Punjabi-flavoured portions. The Marathi rap by Aklesh Sutar is funny, and quite weird too.
The other three songs are quite situational, all by newcomers, with neither one exactly standing above the others. Chinmay Harshe’s Miss You Balma, by Akriti Kakar, is experimental but has you questioning “Why??” because the jazzy composition and the rock arrangements don’t really gel well with each other. Akriti aces the vocals though, singing in an unusually (for her) low pitch. The other duo, Chetan Rao & Vikram Shastry, present two songs, one being a folksy item song Maachis Ki Teeli, in which the very unconventional choice of singer, Bhavya Pandit, whi hasn’t ever sung such a song, proves to be great, as she adjusts to the song’s folksiness very well. Her co-vocalists provide good company as the loafers interjecting occasionally. The last song Faislay has a quite dated tune, and a very mismatching digital loop that starts it off, but Mandar Deshpande’s singing brings it up.


An album that is good, but still will be a wipeout.

 

Total Points Scored by This Album: 4 + 4 + 3.5 + 3 + 3.5 + 3 = 21

Album Percentage: 70%

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: Pal = Miliyo Re > Andheri Raat = Maachis Ki Teeli > Miss You Balma = Faislay



Hope you liked this section of reviews! The review for ‘Tiger Zinda Hai’ will be out soon!

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