Friday, December 20, 2013

Dedh Ishqiya Music Review

Dedh Ishqiya Music Review
Music Direction : Vishal Bhardwaj
Lyrics : Gulzar

Listen to the album Here

What I expected? : For me, Vishal Bhardwaj has shown amazing consistency in his soundtracks. And because the total grand affair Ishqiya music was, winning the National awards for both Best Music Direction and Best Female Singer that year, expectations, from the sequel, are naturally high!

Dil Ka Mizaaj Ishqiya is scintillating, tailor made Rahat Fateh Ali Khan material! The soothing tune and the soft rock arrangements which amalgamates with accordion sound initially and Sax along midway adds to the beauty! #Repeat
Zabaan Jale Hai is drop-dead brilliant! Equally mesmerizing is the serene composition, beautifully written lyrics, terrific strings and the wonderfully nuanced singing from Fateh Ali Khan's part! #MustHear #Repeat
Hamari Atariya's very very Rahman-ish intro captivates subtly well and rightly so, Rekha Bhardwaj aces the mujra track! #Repeat
Kya Hoga has everything going strong. The qawwali sound is executed exceptionally well and the vocalists, Jazim Sharma, Master Saleem, Shahid Mallya and Jamal Akbar are competitive enough, or rather, compliments each other perfectly. The instrumentation, replete with Tabla, Harmonium and other traditional instruments elevates an enchanting midway turn! #Repeat
Jagaave Saari Raina, for a Kathak track, is as beautiful as it can get especially for the tempting sitar interludes and Ms. Bharadwaj's singing. Now the song is predominantly Hindustani in appeal, but somewhere along the lines, must be the swaram portions, there is a definite Carnatic feel which is BTW cleverly incorporated. #Repeat
Horn OK Please has Sukhwinder Singh and Honey Singh rocking together the techno-folk piece! #Repeat

Verdict : Needless to say, faith in Mr. Bhardwaj's musical capabilities are, once again, cemented and anchored down strong! Dedh Ishqiya is a bravo effort, one of Vishal's best and for me in par with both Godmother and Ishqiya. I strained my ears to find one little flaw, alas, but in vain! I don't care whether the soundtrack works in the movie or not but for sure the music audience are in for a treat this time. Vishal Bhardwaj gives the 2014 Bollywood music scene a classy and heady start! Excellent!

Must Hears! : The whole album!


Saturday, December 14, 2013

Bollywood Music Analysis 2013

For the Bollywood music scene, 2013 proved to be pretty good. For once, the industry was entirely devoid of plagiarism accusations and there was one one or another great song playing around at any arbitrary time chosen. Music Directors, the A and B listers both churned out good music, while few let down expectations.
Nevertheless, there was still a handful of quality tracks which did well in terms of popularity too.

The top songs will be enumerated in the next post. For now, I'll discuss my views on the performance of composers and singers this year as well as the best albums.

Top 5 Bollywood Albums 2013

1. Raanjhanaa (A R Rahman)

2. Lootera / Shuddh Desi Romance (Amit Trivedi / Sachin-Jigar)

3. Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy)

4. David / Kai Po Che (Multiple Composers / Amit Trivedi)

5. Ram Leela (Sanjay Leela Bhansali)

Top Composers

1. Sachin-Jigar

They've been around for more than 4 years now, and 2013 was the year they got due credit for the fantastic skill they've shown in composing.(They finally got a Wikipedia page too :D )This has been their biggest year yet with 5 full film scores(ABCD: Any Body Can Dance, Jayantabhai Ki Luv Story, Go Goa Gone, Ramaiya Vastavaiya, Shuddh Desi Romance)and guest compositions in 3 movies(Himmatwala, I Me Aur Mein, Issaq) as well. And apart from the templated Jayanta Bhai Ki Love Story, all the others were an absolute delight, with the stand out work in Shuddh Desi Romance coming right at top! No matter what, one or more Sachin-Jigar song was on hit charts all the time, round the year and with no compromise in quality and with no lack of experimentation. Their music continued to be in their signature style, bright electronic with great focus on melody, and for that they righteously deserves  the position of the Composers of the Year!

2. A R Rahman

How does he do it?!! This is the question me as well as the millions of  fans around the nation ask seeing Rahman consistently churning out quality music. Even with the humongous amount of expectations set on him, Rahman somehow manages to surpass them, raising the bar higher with every attempt. His Coke Studio @ MTV appearance catapulted the shows rating and elevated the shows quality to unexpected heights that most other artists failed to match up, even while giving their best. Rahman did 3 albums in 2013, two(Kadal, Maaryan) in Tamil and Raanjhanaa in Bollywood. Needless to say, all three were bloody good with Raanjhanaa being the pick of the lot! For me Raanjhanaa is the most repeat-worthy album of the year with each and every song so blissfully endearing. 9 tracks, and with a streak of experimentation throughout the album, Raanjhanaa proved to be a five course meal to music lovers!

3. Amit Trivedi

Mr. Trivedi opened 2013 with the exceptional Kai Po Che, delivering 3 solid songs, doing what he does best. Though what followed, Bombay Talkies and Ganchakkar, were average, he swooped in with he excellent Lootera, giving us bite into the 60's! Lootera, for me, is undoubtedly one of the best albums  of the year.

4. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy

SEL remained in their usual goodness this year, with 3 albums(Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, D-Day, Vishwaroop) reeking with good songs. While Bhaag Milkha Bhaag rose to become immensely popular, D-Day too had a fair share of tracks heavily appealing to the music audience. Vishwaroop, intially done in Tamil, was satisfying enough. 

5. Pritam/Sanjay Leela Bhansali

While commercialization of quality music isn't exactly a new thing, Pritam is among the few who actually managed to give commercial music quality. While he wasn't in the stellar form he had shown in 2012, Pritam ruled the popular charts with his hotshot catchy songs. With 9 film scores this year, Pritam's presence was there every time though quality was compromised in many albums. Nevertheless, most critics will agree that Priam's music had a majority role in making Yeh Jawani hai Deewani a box office blockbuster, with a large number of people flocking the cinema halls only for the terrifically massy music! 

Sanjay Leela Bhansali had one release this year, the blindingly colorful Ram-Leela, which he directed as well as composed music. While he has evolved a lot from the Guzaarish days, his craft with his old style were noticeable. Ram-Leela was not a great album in overall, but it sure had some great songs!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Dhoom 3 Music Review

Dhoom 3 Music Review
Music Direction : Pritam Chakraborty
Lyrics : Amitabh Bhattacharya

What I expected? : It is Pritam's music composing debut in an Aamir Khan movie. And with all he hype, glitz and glamour associated with the movie, nothing short of an excellent score!

Malang, as expected, intrigues at the first hear itself! The high point definitely being the track's topnotch, high quality production and the impressive wordplay. After the killer 'Zinda', Siddharth Mahadevan (with the subtle support from Shilpa Rao)can easily add a chart buster to his kitty! #Repeat
Kamli partly engages for Sunidhi's upbeat and meticulous voice modulation. Credit goes to the adept interludes too but the lyrical repetition somehow plays spoilsport along the way.
Tu Hi Junoon flaunts a brisk Russian-rock arrangement setup but sadly the middling base tune fails to excite. Mohit Chauhan puts in, at best, an OK effort, not that it helps.
The Title track is neither here nor there, somewhere in between Dhoom1 and Dhoom 2 title tracks. The mishmash gets a dub step treatment in between but for most parts it sounded like Sunidhi's 'Dhoom Machale' itself.
The disappointment is heightened by a lame Arabic Version of the song, sung by Lebanese singer Naya, which apart from the lyrics, has not a bit of Arabic feel in it.
Bande Hai Hum Uske is sweet and outright haunting at the same time! Loved the tune and the toned down rendition by little Shivam Mahadevan equally.
The rest two are instrumentals, Dhoom Tap and Dhoom Overtune where the former is presumably for Aamir Khan's reported Tap Dance scene and the latter most probably will serve in the background where again the signature Dhoom tune is repeated the zillionth time.

Verdict : For what it's worth, Dhoom 3 music score is somewhat a letdown. While Malang scores by its own merits the other tracks just doesn't have have that kind of a stellar punch a movie like this needs. And the repetition of the Dhoom tune throughout the album, wherever possible, is kind of weary. There is nothing much new and the score seems like to be made in a hurry, something we can assume from the lack of musical detailing in many of the tracks. Surprisingly, the man of innovations, Pritam, has run out of fuel here and that too for a prestigious project and I wonder why! Average.

Must Hears! : Malang


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Gaana 3.0 Unvieled - Review has revealed its new look, revamping itself by a large margin. Well, I got an early access to it couple of days ago, thanks to the my music blogging privileges and I loved it, every bit!

So what's new?

Looks : It looks great. It resembles the iTunes store somewhat, but its just me probably. Anyway, the new metro interface is pretty cool, user friendly. Its compact, and space conscious unlike the older version where everything was stuffed into one place which made it hard to distinguish between albums sometimes. And its brighter!

Music : Collection wise, there isn't much changes I guess. Gaana boasts of 2 Million songs. I don't know, it is practically not possible to know how much bigger the library of Gaana is compared to the competitors. But I'm satisfied with it.

Interface : Interface has changed a lot. The uber cool looks are eye pleasing. Same goes with the fluid movements of the tabs when they are pointed upon. The drop-downs works great. The home page shows the new releases as well as the features playlists. Scrolling down, we get the Radios, top songs, and top artists. Search has improved a lot, I'd say. Its way easier and faster than the old one and more organized.

Player : High quality and and high clarity. I think Gaana has so far the best music player among Indian streaming sites. 128 kbps streaming they claim and I think the quality is up to that. Shuffle, repeat, volume controls all good. Playlist is easily accesible and detailed. Only problem, which was there in the old version and remain unsolved is that even a slight glitch in net connection may result in the player being stopped. Its irritating, they need to work on that.

Apps : The SingAlong feature is still there, which I personally love, though it'd have been great if a recording feature was there too. Playlists from Zoom and Radio Mirchi continue to be present. Radios and pre-programmed playlists are good, but not much use to me.

Gaana Mobile has also some great changes, but I'm yet to try it out.

So give a try to the new super cool!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Top Songs - Coke Studio at MTV Season 3

So Season 3 of Coke Studio at MTV comes to an end. Better than Season 2? I think yes, definitely, why not? The production quality was better, the aesthetic appeal was better, lineup was better, popularity was better and on an average there wasn't a single disappointing episode overall. Even the various artists' one, which I consider was the weakest, had its own perks so there is that.

Having 8 episodes, with an ensemble of top notch artists, Coke Studio India strived to be, if not above, but in par with its Pakistani counterpart. Whether it has achieved that or not is another topic of discussion, but the efforts are appreciable and thankfully going in the right direction. Roping in A R Rahman was a highly clever decision, I'd say. For one thing, the show got a wider reach riding on Rahman's popularity. I don't think people took notice of Season 2 like they did with Season 3. It definitely helped the other artists too, Papon and Ram Sampath mainly. The good artists they are, their popularity among the masses weren't too great before the show, their songs were definitely, but their faces weren't. I'm glad for that.

Speaking of the artists, Rahman shined as usual, throwing us some intelligent gems like Zariya, Ennile Maha Oliyo and Aao Balma and giving a tremendous start to the season. Ram Sampath followed, maintaining the momentum to an extent, though a notch below Rahman. Nevertheless, his songs Piya Se Naina and Kattey are among the most popular of the entire season. Clinton Cerejo came next and while he wasn't in his stellar form he showed in Season 2, got us satisfied with his contrasting choice of genres. Baina, Kalappi and Marghat. I mean, even superficially, the tracks are grossly different. With the early release of Bismillah, expectations from Salim-Sulaiman were in the peak and they kind of dealt with it beautifully. Kare Mann Bhajan and Cheene Mora Chain for instance. Papon's and Amit Trivedi's episodes along with Rahman's comprises my top 3. Papon, the clear underdog among the producers gave a pleasant surprise, churning out high quality tracks like Benaam Khwaayishein, Dinae Dinae and Khumaar, took our attention through the perky and energetic Tauba. Amit Trivedi on the other hand was rock-steady, above all creatively, just like in season 2. 5 songs, one less than the usual and all my favorites! Hitesh Sonik was in his usual self. Haal Ve Raba intrigued, Ghar tried to ape Husna and Ramaiyaa will be among the top songs of the season. The various artists' episode was the weakest, as I said before, but then again you can't speak bad of Vyakul Jiyara and Man Manam. Where in the former, Vijay Prakash revealed his excellent prowess as a composer and in the later Sonam Kalra mesmerized with her singing.

Lets talk about the best singers. Ani Choying Drolma & Farah Siraj scintillated us with Zariya while Ustad Ghulam Mustafa Khan, needless to say was legendary. Bhanvari Devi and Sona Mohapatra ruled Ram Sampath's turn while Vijay Prakash, Kailash Kher and Sidhaarth Basrur did at Cerejo's. Kailash Kher again was the highlight of Salim-Sulaiman's Bismillah and Salim Merchent proved again how good a singer he is. Anweshaa Dutta mesmerized in Benaam Khwaayishein, she is definitely somebody to watch out for the future! Papon along with Benny Dayal and Harshdeep Kaur did a great job in his episode. Amit Trivedi made sound every singer with him just great. Himself, Tochi Raina, Kavita Seth, Karthik, Shalmali Kholgade, Tanvi Shah and Jaggi, to name! Hitesh Sonik worked magic with Piyush Mishara as expected and Hans Raj Hans was in superb form too! Then again, his wife Sunidhi Chauhan was the best of the lot, singing Ramaiyaa with such grace! Vijay Prakash nailed Vyalul Jiyara as composer and singer both and Sonam Kalra has shown immense promise.

Among some of the other artists worth mentioning is Mohiny Dey. 16 year old she is and already among the top bass players in the country! Also Rushad Mistry, bassist, but of course he doesn't need any more compliments for the talent he has. Sivamani totally rocked his part in with Rahman.

I don't have a definitive top 10 or 15 number of songs from the show, its higher basically, and I don't know how to rank fusion music in an order. There is no benchmark, the genres are so diverse and different so comparisons are are out of the equation. So I trust my ears, posting the songs which I've heard the most number of times and which I'll prefer hearing over the others in the coming weeks and months.

The below songs are listed in NO PARTICULAR ORDER, though songs coming at the top are the ones most listened by me.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Attuned Spirits | Vasuda Sharma | Indipop Music Review

Attuned Spirits Music Review
Artist : Vasuda Sharma

Listen to the album online HERE
Buy the album legally HERE

Vasuda Sharma was an unknown name for me until I heard Maajhi on YouTube one fine day. I took a liking for it and have been following Vasuda since then.  From the research I've done, Vasuda Sharma is part of Aasma, the pop band which surfaced from the second edition of the band hunt reality show Channel [V] Popstars. The status of the band is unknown, but some of the other members have made their own name in Bollywood, Neeti Mohan and Sangeet Haldipur, to name. Vasuda had composed for a movie in 2010, then went on to study at The Berklee School of Music for an year. Attuned Spirits is her return act I guess. Another interesting fact is that the album is fully funded by crowd sourcing! That is quite appreciable, for the crowd sourcing culture is yet to grow in India, some good demonstrations are needed.
So all said and done, the expectations from Attuned Spirits, Vasuda's solo debut album, are definitely pretty high! Taking a look.

Maajhi gives a heady start, the free flowing composition work magic with Vasuda's soulful vocals! The Hinglish lyrics gets along well, makes the song soothing to core. #Repeat
Sax is the highlight of the otherwise too superbly arranged Meera bhajan remake Giridhar. Here again, the melodic backbone is pretty strong which gets to another high with the well refined singing bit. #Repeat
Almost the same can be said for the breezy Barsan Lage Nain, though it takes more of a classical route towards the end portions and stands out, obviously. #Repeat
Love-drenched lyrics of  Laagi Lagan demonstrates Vasuda's excellent range and vocal variations while the strings and occasional Violin gives highly pleasing results! #Repeat
Classical base of Jaagi Jaagi Raina is evident, though not very clear and while Vasuda moves gracefully with her vocals, the arrangements simply stand out! A smooth amalgamation of Sax, Violin, Keys and Guitar (and some other indiscernible instruments too) provides one hell of background! #Repeat
Calling out to you aptly alternates between a modern, frothy outlook and an intense pathos led avatar, and the Cello along with the keys, Violin and Guitar are used to brilliant effect! #Repeat
Perplexing is the word for the heavily unconventional sounds behind Maula! The Kabir dohas are skillfully stuffed into an ensemble of sounds with an Arabic feel in parts while switching to a bass led metal like sound towards the end! #Repeat
Dhola somehow changes the entire mood of the album. Mainly because of  its rich and joyful Rajasthani dance base which gets along wonderfully with Vasuda's sweet and perky vocals! #Repeat
With Keep the Faith the album does a somersault again, this time to land on an aggressive Emo base! Vasuda sounds passionately deft and expressive while conveying the deeply laid out emotions of the lyrics with fantastic skill! #Repeat
The genre switches to bluesy base in Cruel World but the prospects aren't much exciting here, not really. The guitar interludes are great BTW which somehow raises the bar of the otherwise average composition. 
The immensely swayful tune works in great favor of Never Lose your Heart which feature a lilting A capella-ish background! Spritely singing by Vasuda helps. #Repeat

Verdict : Back with a bang?! Definitely. Attuned Spirits doesn't go wrong anywhere along the way. A masterful association of world music with Indian roots, the album is a steal! And Vasuda Sharma has taken me by surprise! She is a lot of talent. Composing, singing, arranging. I mean, how many Indian girls are out there doing all these things together and with a mellifluous perfection? Oh yes, the spirits are attuned and good things are happening to Indipop again! :D

Must Hears! : The Entire Album


Again, buy the album legally HERE. For Rs. 100, 11 bloody good songs are totally worth it!

P.S : Here is an article published in Rolling Stone where Vasuda talks about the album, song by song. If you want to dig deep into the classical bases that is the raga and stuff of the songs, this might help.

And here are the two accompanying videos released.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Mickey Virus Music Review

Mickey Virus Music
Music Direction : Hanif Sheikh

What I expected? : Nothing

Tose Naina by Arijit Singh is pleasant, sufi-ish, but I have a feeling that Mohit Chauhan would have done a better job than Arijit.
Aakhan hi Aankhon makes the cut, the good tune as well as the singing by Mohit Chauhan and Palak Muchhal helps! #Repeat
Pyaar China Ki Maal Hai, Sajna Ve Sajna and the Title song are simply 'skip'pable!

Verdict : What intrigues is the fact that Hanif Sheikh manages to sound every singer incredibly nasal! Arijit Singh hasn't sung so nasal in his entire career, and the the guy who sang Pyaar China can beat even Himesh Reshammiya! Same goes with Sajna and the Title song. As the saving grace, Palak Muchhal doesn't go with the trend. Not for two hearable songs, Mickey Virus would have gone down to the poor zone. It maintains a Below Average identity somehow.

Must Hears! : Aankhon Hi Aankhon


Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Ram Leela Music Review

Ram Leela Music

Music Direction : Sanjay Leela Bhansali
Lyrics : Siddharth - Garima

What I expected? : Going by the trailer and the music direction track record Bhansali has, an emotional ensemble.

Raam Chahe Leela doesn't soar, its appealing in parts but that is it. Indian Idol find Bhoomi Trivedi does an impressive job though!
Lahu muh lag Gaya sounds pleasantly seductive, the traditional arrangements help while Shahil Hada shines his way through!
Ang Laga De works the same way, although the mellowed down arrangements and Aditi Paul's graceful vocals make it a bit more luscious affair! #Repeat
Poore Chaand has Shahil Hada again, but can't help getting a monotonous sound, the tune isn't exciting either.
Nagada Sang Dhol has Shreya Ghoshal in pure form, especially the vocal variations she brings into the framework fits in the garba dance mood perfectly! #Repeat
Laal Ishq flaunts a bhajan-like outlook for most parts, thanks to that hypnotic tune and temple sounds, while it is more of a romantic affair going by the lyrics. Arijit Singh gets the job done pretty well here, he aces it actually! #Repeat
Ishqyaun Dhishqyaun is weak in itself, lyrics and composition wise, while Aditya Narayan, the good singer he is, strangely sounds like his dad but somehow lacks the charisma and is oddly bleak.
Mor Bani Thanghat Kare is folk-ish in core, like the usual songs Osman Mir sings, nothing to brag about but.
Dhoop can be easily mistaken for an Ismail Darbar song, the sweet yet moody melody is marvelously crafted! With Shreya Ghoshal flowing in beautifully, it makes one hell of a hear! #MustHear
Tattad Tattad, again by Aditya Narayan has a loud south Indian dance template, boringly noisy. Skip.

Verdict : Maybe this is the kind of music the movie needs, but Ram Leela soundtrack leaves one somewhat dissatisfied. Bhansali does great when it comes to the arrangements, but he must really work on his tunes, I'd say. Good effort, could have been a lot better.

Must Hears! : Dhoop, Laal Ishq, Ang Laga De, Nagada Sang


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Krrish 3 Music Review

Krrish 3 Music
Music Direction : Rajesh Roshan
Lyrics : Sameer

What I expected? : Some really good and hummable tunes, like the usual Rajesh Roshan.

Krrish Title song may work in the movie background, but lacks any kind of repeat and addictive quality. Sigh, it doesn't sound much like a title song, constant electronic loops merged with Mamta Sharma's secretive vocals, and a tad too long.
Raghupati Raghav is thoroughly annoying. The 'Raghupati Raghav' part, which itself is an abuse of the original, barely gets along with the rest of the song where again the lyrics are as bland as possible and the techno arrangements strictly average.
Dil Tu Hi Bata's saving grace is Alisha Chinay's sweet vocal bit, the lyrics doesn't seem to go out of your head while Zubeen Garg is plain lifeless. Then again, the pallavi sounds strangely similar to 'Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam', or is it just me?
You are my love is cheesy blah, Mohit Chauhan's and even Alisha Chinay's presence doesn't help.
God Allah Aur Bhagvan has Sonu Nigam and Shreya Ghoshal in front but you'll be disappointed if you expect something with quality. The pseudo-motivational lyrics is, frankly, childish and the song itself seems quite out of date.

Verdict : Krrish 3 is an ensemble of 5 passive tracks, not even in the near neighborhood of the slightly huge expectations. 3 years after that very good score in Kites, Rajesh Roshan, seems to be in a strangely weary position. Below average.

Must Hears! : None


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Boss Music Review

Boss Music
Music Direction : Meet Bros Anjjan, Chirantan Bhatt, P.A.Deepak, Yo Yo Honey Singh
Lyrics : Kumaar, Manoj Yadav & Sahil Kaushal-Lill Gollu

What I expected? : Pretty low expectations, quality wise.

Title song is pretty lackluster, slightly heard before electronic music, massy. Honey Singh tries well but in vain.
Har Kisi Ko borrows elements from the original 'Jaanebaaz' song of the same name while keeping its own identity, increased tempo for instance and some unnaturally loud orchestration. Arijit Singh and Neeti Mohan pulls off an okay-ish effort, all blame on some average arrangements which lets it even down.
Nikhil D'Souza's version is not much different, save for some added strings.
Party all night goes in leagues in with the title song, with a constant synth bass and DJ elements merged with Honey Singh's drunken vocals, ends up slightly more impressive, for the time being.
Pitah Se Hai Naam Tera is ordinary, Sonu Nigam tries his best to shine up this devotional-ish track, while Meet Bros. struggle, composition wise.
Hum Na Tode, Hindi remake(by Graamy awarde winner P. A Deepak) of Vidyasagar's original 'Appadi Pode' doesn't excite much. (May be its me, because of the zillion times I've heard the original play all around me for years now.) Vishal Dadlani is in his usual bombastic self while the song is complete with the addictive kuthu elements!
Boss Theme. I'm still trying to figure out what this is.

Verdict : Boss music, like the ones which comes and goes without any particular effect. Average.

Must Hears! : None


Saturday, August 31, 2013

Phata Poster Nikhla Hero Music Review

Phata Poster Nikhla Hero Music
Music Direction : Pritam Chakraborty
Lyrics : Irshad Kamil

What I expected? : Commercial, non-stop Pritam!

Tu Mere Al Bagal is routine yet addictive Mika-Pritam combo, something on the lines of 'Pungi', less interesting arrangements but. Enjoyable!
Mein Rang Shrabaton ka's sweety-catchy melodious tune is let down by Atif Aslam's average, heavily auto tuned vocals, while Chinmayi is the only saving grace.
Mein Rang Sharbaton(reprise) scores by leaps and bounds for the one reason Arijit Singh is singing it, and man, he makes it simply gorgeous! How I wish the original version were sung by him! #Repeat
Hey Mr. DJ has Benny Dayal, Shefali Alvares, and Shalmali Kholgade on fire, quite exotic techno dance track replete with spritely arrangements!
Mere Bina Tu gets to the mesmerizing level, the simple soft rock arrangements merged with the pitch perfect singing of Rahat Fateh Ali Khan and Harshdeep Kaur makes it a stunning listen! #Must Hear #Repeat
Dhating Naach will literally put your legs on fire! An amazingly fast tempoed desi dance track, the energy level with which Nakash Azi and Neha Kakkad sings it is quite remarkable! #Repeat
Janam Janam's heartfelt lyrics are justified by Atif Aslam's soulful, beautiful vocals which demands multiple listens and the same can be said for Sunidhi Chauhan's reprise version, where she shines from top to bottom with her soft, vehement singing act! #Repeat

Verdict : Phata Poster NH comes with strong musical elements, which are bright and refreshing throughout, slight flaws aside! Pritam switches his commercial, yet Very Good mode ON!

Must Hears! : Mein Rang(Reprise), Mere Bina Tu, Janam Janam(both versions)


Monday, August 26, 2013

Besharam Music Review

Besharam Music
Music Direction : Lalit Pandit, Ishq Bector
Lyrics : Rajeev Barnwal, Nikhat Khan & Himanshu Kishan Mehra

What I expected? : Another commercial outing from Ranbir must have good backing music. But pretty skeptical about what to expect from Lalit Pandit.

Tu Hai is your quintessential  romantic song, very good job composition and arrangement wise, but for singers like Shreya Ghoshal and Sonu Nigam, just plain cake walk. Nice one! #Repeat
Dil Ka jo Haal Hai definitely has the late 90's-early 2000's hangover and bringing Abhijeet Bhattacharya behind the mic helps only in increasing it with his retro styled vocals while Shreya Ghoshal tries her best to sound contemporary. 
Tere Mohalle is an attempt to ape 'Munni Badnaam' with the same singer duo, Mamata Sharma and Aishwarya Nigam, and the success of the item number track will depend heavily on the picturisation.
Title song by Ishq Bector is passable techno, with mind boggling lyrics.
Love ki Ghanti seems like an extension to 'Ala Barfi', same retro template complete with some fabulous singing job+voice overs from Ranbir Kapoor, Sujeet Shetty and Amitosh Nagpal and absolutely quirky lyrics! Loved it! 
Chal Hand Uthake Nachche is sufficiently trippy and foot tapping with the explosive trio of Daler Mehndi, Mika Singh and Sunidhi Chauhan raging all over it! #Repeat
Aa Re Aa Re, another item dance number it seems, thankfully remains safe within the usual but energetic vocals of Mika Singh and Shreya Ghoshal even with the mostly-absurd lyrics! #Repeat

Remixes for all the songs except Chal Hand and Tu Hai are included along with an unplugged version for Tu Hai.

Verdict : Lalit Pandit delivers an almost safe outing with Besharam, but the current form is only a shadow of the Jatin-Lalit duo of the past. Shelf life of tracks is on doubt but definitely will serve for good promotions of the film. Good attempt!

Must Hears! : Tu Hai


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Shuddh Desi Romance Music Review

Shuddh Desi Romance Music

Music Direction : Sachin-Jigar
Lyrics : 

What I expected? : Ever since 'Gulabi' released, the expectations were pretty high. Romance, quality and freshness.

Tere Mere Beech Mein stands justified to the 'fresh' expectations, Mohit and Sunidhi Chauhan aces the track while the tune is sufficiently romantic as well as quirky. The westernized arrangements makes things look even better! #Repeat
Gulabi can be readily recognized somewhere in between the A R Rahman-Amit Trivedi zone, an amazingly perky and lovely tune with Jigar coming up with his career best singing act along with Priya Panchal! The arrangements, especially the repetitive folksy interludes are seriously addictive! #MustHear #Repeat
Chanchal Mann scores at everything, the highly energetic background, Divya Kumar's one-man-show-stealer-show and the quirky lyrics. Can't help shaking your head! #Repeat
Title song cannot get any more crazy, the enchanting harmonim-dholak mix sandwiched between the highly spirited Benny Dayal-Shalmali Kholgade vocals and a purely desi dance tune! #Repeat
Mujhe Kiss Kar Sakte Ho is a vehemently brilliant instrumental, the slow buildup and the absolutely lovable middle portions have a strongly emotional feel! #Repeat
Love in Jaipur has Priya Panchal whispering Rajasthani, with an external coating of exotic desi arrangements! #Repeat
Tez Waala Attraction is basically Chahchal mann interludes rehashed, nothing much. Quirky BTW.
Boyfriend Banogey is again Gulabi interlude presented in a different avatar, charming!
Bhanwara Ma Bhatke has an impressive pedestrian lineup of instruments, interesting!

Verdict : Plain simply, all the songs work, to a large extent. Then again, majority are instrumentals with short running span so commercial prospects cannot be judged. The four original songs are rock-solid, will easily feature among Sachin-Jigars best works and the album on the whole is a must hear for them! The duo have successfully managed to fit the essence of Rajasthan into a modern frame! Very Good work, the four songs, gonna be on my playlist for the coming months!

Must Hears! : Gulabi, Tere mere beech


Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Satyagraha Music Review

Satyagraha Music 
Music Direction : Salim-Sulaiman, Indian Ocean, Meet Bros. Anjaan, Aadesh Srivastava
Lyrics : Prasoon Joshi

What I expected? : Nothing

Janta Rocks by Meet Bros. is partly engaging, mainly for the sarcastic-inspiring lyrics and the nice bit of percussion going behind the scene. Sitautional and a tad too long.
Hum Bhole De's anthemic sound may work well in the movie, signature Indian Ocean folk-rock template with Rahul Ram, Amit Kilam and Himanshu Joshi in great form!
The title track has a highly impactful start, the "Raghupati Raghav..." chants doing magic along with the neat electronica. But the initial high falters with the extra lyrics, which seemingly doesn't go in sync.
Aiyo Ji has Shradha Pandit in her brilliant crystal clear avatar, flowing through the fusion stuff the track is, ending up with seemingly good results!
A remix is added.
Raske Bhare Tore Naina is the best reserved for the last, Shafqat Amanat Ali is pitch perfect in this Hindustani semi-classical material which hits the bull's eye, composition wise. Minimal arrangements giving thankfully more space to the singer to showcase his vocal details cleverly does the magic here!
The House Mix of the song rendered by Aadesh Srivastava is just about OK. Aadesh, unlike Shafqat sounds folk-ish at times.

Verdict : Satyagraha started off with zero expectations only to end up with a fairly good track list. While Raske Bhare is going to be on loop, Aiyo Ji and the other songs scores for their own situational merits. All composers contributes expectedly, while Salim Sulaiman seems on an welcome high, compared to their recent status. Looking forward to see how well the songs are incorporated into the movie. Good one, worth a try!

Must Hears! : Raske Bhare Tore Naina


Friday, July 19, 2013

Once Upon A Time In Mumbai Dobaara! Music Review

Once Upon A Time In Mumbai Dobaara! Music 
Music Direction : Pritam Chakraborty, Laxmikant - Pyarelal
Lyrics : Rajat Aroraa

What I Epected? : Thinking on the lines of OUATIM, some sturdy melodies.

Chungliyaan has tried, tested, cliched Sufi-Qawaali template, Javed Ali shows his usual self anyway. Composition wise, just average.
Ye Tune Kya Kiya is no different, except for the raw, rustic vocals of Javed Bashir, which helps the song rise above average, still just film-worthy.(The Sitar piece in between, comprising hook lines of Tum Jo Aaye and Pee Loon was pretty nice!)
Tu Hi Khwahish throws a pleasant surprise, well composed follow up to 'Parda', Sunidhi Chauhan croons the disco song well while sounding quite Asha Bhosle-ish!
Tayyab Ali is plain boring. I'm not in for comparing this with the original 'Amar Akbar Anthony' song but this Anupam Amod recreation is lackluster, fails to entertain.

Verdict : OUATIMD is nowhere close to OUATIM. Lacking almost everything, Pritam delivers another dud.

Must Hears! : Nothing


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Chennai Express Music Review

Chennai Express Music
Music Directors : Vishal-Shekhar
Lyrics : Amitabh Bhattacharya

What I expected? : What else than an out and out masala entertainment affair with Vishal Shekhar's highly capable abilities merged with SRK's stardom! 

1234 opens to dysfunction, even the rhythmic Tamil kuthu dance template works in vain, falls flat outright on its face!
Titli helps the album bounce back like a boomerang, an amazingly serene tune set to occasional Carnatic classical backgrounds and sung to immense grace by Chinmayi Sriprada with Gopi Sundar's apt support! #Must Hear #Repeat
An unwanted, badly done Dubstep version is added! Why V-S Why?!
Tera Rastaa Chhodoon Na's swingy, youthful composition with the equally eclectic orchestration impresses big time! The singers, Amitabh Bhattacharya and Anusha Mani sounds lively! #Repeat
Kashmir Main Tu Kanyakumari is interesting for the snappy lyrics, but is immensely forgetful for the tune is dull and the good elements all scattered! Worth a hear, likely to work with the video!
Ready Steady Po has a lot of things going around it at a time, its hard to discern them all together. Techno-hip hop with the usual Bollywood edge, strictly functional.
Chennai Express, the title song, is sure-fire catchy if you forget the bizarre lyrics, with the high point definitely being S P Balasubrahmanyam's impeccable vocals which takes the song to further heights along with  the addictive techno swing! Jonita Gandhi's B-Town debut is impressive! #Repeat
Chennai Express Mashup is awfully fast tempoed, nevertheless neatly done.

Verdict : I don't know, Vishal-Shekhar seems pretty handicapped in Chennai Express, the album doesn't meet the mammoth sized expectations. While the 'hits-expected' dance tracks fail miserably(barring only the title track) the saving grace comes in the form of the two melodies. The songs may climb up the charts, thanks to SRK's stardom and the immense promotions given to the film, but the music definitely lacks professionalism and quality. Just above average.

Must Hears! : Titli, Tera Rastaa

(Somewhere in the middle :P)

Sunday, June 30, 2013

D-Day Music Review

D-Day Music
Music Direction : Shanker-Ehsaan-Loy
Lyrics : Niranjan Iyengar

What I expected? : SEL-Nikhil Advani usually produces good melodies. Looking forward.

Duma Dum Mast Kalander is repeated the gazillionth time, this time through Mika's lead vocals. Nothing much impressive, though interesting choice of a singer for a song like this.
Alvida has an inherent Patiala House hangover, nevertheless simple yet super swayful composition with justified singing by Nikhil D’souza,Shruti Hassan, Sukhvinder Singh and Loy Mendonsa!
Murshid Khele Holi is Qawaali perfection(The Tabla and Harmonium throughout for instance, stands out) with a highly discernible sufi edge and singing by Munawar Masoom, Javed Ali, Shankar Mahadevan and the chorus gives perfect results! #Repeat
Ek Ghadi has Rekha Bharadwaj producing a real stunner in the form of a ghazal, wonderful classical based Hindustani composition, though its only a cake walk as far as Mrs. Bharadwaj is concerned. #Must hear
Dhuaan comes with that definite anthemic sound, the vocals works immensely(Rahul Ram, Siddharth Mahadevan, Alyssa Mendonsa and chorus) as well as the Violins, though track is strictly situational..

Verdict : What has an action thriller to do with good music, God only knows, but D-Day has definitely very good music. SEL shows their usual capabilities and D-Day turns out to be a pleasant experience. Recommended!

Must Hears! : Ek Ghadi, Murshid Khele Holi, Alvida