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The much awaited music of Ghajini is out. If I had written this post yesterday, believe me it would have turned out *completely* different. As you guessed it, the music is by A.R. Rahman (Mental Note : Never review a Rahman album for the first 48 hours).
I think Rahman might just have a winner on his hands here. A good overall album after Jodha Akbar (I could never warm up to Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Ya and Yuvvraaj apart from the odd Kahin To and Zindagi). The essence of Rahman is best captured in the slower tracks, and if you go through your playlist for the songs of A.R. Rahman that you still listen to, chances are most of them are the slower numbers. We have that in plenty here (although that doesn’t really guarantee anything).
It is tough to select the best track here. The first song, Guzarish, comes closest to vintage Rahman. Sung beautifully by Javed Ali (of Jashn-e-Bahaara), but the winner here is Sonu Nigam providing the background humming for the full length of the song and yet managing to elevate it to greater heights ! You have to listen to it to know why Sonu Nigam’s name is mentioned in its credits. The mandolin sounds great in this track, almost reminiscent of the Saathiya beginning (and way better than the irritating Tujhe Dekha To piece, which led me to hate the mandolin with a vengeance until I heard U. Srinivas years later).
The second track Aye Bachchu is the one that surprised me, and in a nice way. It is just magic when the background and the foreground shift to the major scale with rhythmic lyrics giving it that extra punch. The rest of this track is about okay.
The third is another slower number, Kaise Mujhe, and another nice slow number you can listen to for a few years with its typical Rahman structure (the beats, vocals and strings all coming along exactly as expected). A damn tough song to sing with notes jumping around and high, but newcomer Benny Dayal impresses with his voice and range. Understandably, the range falls right in the comfort zone of the female lead Shreya Ghosal and she does her part with ease. A piece of advice : DO NOT attempt to sing this this song without adult supervision, especially if you are trying to impress someone.
Now I might not share views about Behka with a few. I think the lyrics and the music blend in perfectly with the theme of the song, especially the start of the stanza (antara) and singer Karthik is truly perfect in every note (and there are quite a few tricky parts) and word.
Now the downsides. The not-so-good track is just the one, Latoo and I am not really going to bother about its details. The second is the naming of the tracks. Whoever thought of Aye Bachchu and Latoo !!
Rahman is back. This time with a bigger orchestra, more grandeur, an Austrian ensemble and a music that is heavily western classical.
I’ll get to the point. Rahman’s albums are never about the fast paced tracks, they are about the slower tracks which we play on for years. That masterpiece is Zindagi, with some beautiful lyrics and sung equally beautifully by Srinivas. DO NOT miss this song. I was done with this album after I heard this song.
In case you are interested, the other good tracks : The first track, which is a rendition of Beethoven’s fifth symphony with a voiceover/introduction of the character Yuvraaj by Salman Khan, and it is thankfully different from this Indian version : Link @ 4:40. Apart from this, Dil Ka Rishta is nice (although sometimes Rahman’s voice is annoying, rare but true), Mastam and Tu Meri Dost Hai keep the album tight. The other 3 are okay.
.. makes for a thoughtful read, even if you are not a fan : Link
I find we are living in such violent times that it becomes almost necessary to break the clutter, to get associated with products that can offer hope, that can offer a sense of melody…a harmony.
Every time I create a melody I wonder if there is a way this song will reach out and prevent a bloodbath.
Compare that to our leaders, who hope that a whole state burns for their cause. While using music to achieve this might seem idealistically simplistic, in Rahman’s words : It is, but you see, music is all that I know.
He sure makes a mark as a person, even if you are not influenced by his music.
Happened to catch this movie purely by accident (in the greed of some free food at a friend’s place).
If I said the movie was good and had excellent music (Rahman …… of 2000), you would say “Duh ! 8 years late !”.
But which was the last movie that you could pause at any location and the scene would make you say “Beautiful !” ? It is one of those rare movies which are a cinematographer’s delight (credit : Ravi K. Chandran); I could literally count on my fingers the number of scenes that had a moving camera. That’s right ! Still camera, wide angles, great use of lighting, beautiful locales, all the way !
To sum up the movie, when a cinematographer makes a movie, obviously he is more in love with his camera than his script (Case Study : Santosh Sivan). But even if you don’t understand Tamil and the title only sounds like “Yendu kondu”, please give this a try. And translators are not hard to find in exchange of good free food.