Paa – Music review

Music – Ilayaraja
Lyrics – Swanand Kirkire

1. Mudi Mudi kahan mein – Quite an unconventional way to start the song with electric guitar, faint piano and drums lead us to Shilpa Rao who is wondering which way she has turned who she has met why? There are a lot of positive emotions which are each described in one word in the song. The song has a very continuous tone to it with moments of electric guitar in bass and shrill notes. A 2:58 minute song does no harm to the listener and that’s just what it is. No real stanza but then…it’s, in my view meant to convey a girl who is just pleased (not overly ecstatic) and is just humming along as she walks about.

2. Gumm Sum Gumm – One repetitive note on the keyboard is soon followed by Kids who go by the name K. Bavatharini (Ilayaraja’s daughter) & Shravan who are singing along wondering why one of their ‘friends’ is sad and is crying? The urge their ‘friend’ not to act like a ‘kid’ and share his problem with them. While the kids mingle with high notes on the electric guitar and a continuous melody, the chorus has helped put a pace in to the song which doesn’t let the listener feel bored. In between there are some notes of Piano which seem to be injecting a bit of ‘stillness’ into the song as the song reaches it’s end. Beautiful lyrics (although you do get a feel that Swanand kirkire has put in a bit of extra effort to ‘accommodate’ words in the tune)

3. Udi Udi Ittefaq se – If Shilpa Rao is wondering in the first song about the turns she has taken, in this one (keeping the tune exactly the same), she wonders where is she flying by chance? (Mudi – means turn in and Udi – means fly in Hindi). The song continues where ‘Mudi Mudi’ left itself. The song has more lyrics and totally ‘bindaas’ lyrics about the girl who is now ‘flying’. This song is no ‘Aaj main uppar’ (from Khamoshi) which has a punch in it, instead this song has a very ‘niche’ feel with uniform beats and no sudden verbal histrionics.

4. Hichki HichkiSunidhi Chauhan (O where have you been by the way?), starts the song with a quasi-whisper and the Ilayaraja trademark beats accompany her. Quite a brave message of not getting dissolved in the crowd is delivered with a sweet punch. The tone, I don’t know why has a southern touch to it. I am looking forward to the situation in which this song will be used because from the sound of it, this does look like a song which can be easily murdered by putting it in the background as the main characters go through with their chores in the main story line (although the lyrics are quite suggestive and has a lyrical undertone which should not be abused by the film-maker). Not one of Sunidhi Chauhan’s best.

5. Gali Mudi Ittefaq se – While Shilpa Rao was wondering which road is she taking carelessly in the first and third song above, Shaan comes with a symphony arrangement and reminisces (with very soothing electric guitar in the back ground accompanied with violins), why did he fight and not fly. The song has a negative feel to it but is the most soulful piece I have heard from Shaan since quite sometime.

6. Halke Se BoleKiddy chorus starts this prayer-song with a soothing message of embracing the tomorrow. The melody which accompanies urges you to see the world of tomorrow. Quite a short song (1:41 minutes). I must say somewhere this song has the ‘So gaye hain saare afsaane’ (slow version from the movie zubeida) feel.

7. Mere Paa – Step aside ladies and gentlemen, here comes AMITABH BACHCHAN (AB). You can’t believe that it is AB when the song starts. I had to consult the CD because I felt it is sung by Shankar Mahadevan. Yes, this is AB!! I so want to tell you more about this song, but I would just make one request – please hear this song with particular attention to the following words and the way they are pronounced by AB. The words are – ‘Darpok’ (one who gets scared quickly), ‘full light on’, ‘ha ha’, and lastly, don’t miss AB humming along this lovely violin which will give you goose bumps (even if you swear you wont let yourself get carried away by the haunting violin!)

8. Paa theme – The theme starts with a distinct pa pa pa pa chanting with intermittent (and broken) violin notes, and within 30 seconds the vocals of pa pa pa pa ‘marry’ the violin notes and take you to one of the most memorable violin which you would have heard in a hindi movie. Suddenly you hear someone calling ‘Auro’ (which is AB’s name in the movie) and Viola! Electric guitar joins in!! Oh! The carelessness of melody! If you are the one to compare, I would put this piece as Ilayaraja’s way of making you dance (in a way ‘The Corrs’ did when they performed ‘Joy Of Life (trout in the bath)’ in their Dublin Concert.

Finally – With Ilayaraja, melody can be taken for granted. The cynics and ‘Pritam’ loving junta wont like this album even a wee bit, but then, if Pritam (and the likes) can survive, Ilaraja has to be given a million acre Villa to live and rule the world of music. The tunes are simple with a bit of retro-feel. I rate this 4 out of 5 because this one is an OST and not a music album, and with a story-line as peculiar as of ‘Paa’, I am sure the songs will be an integral part of the movie and wont act as a disconnect (how else can you explain that the average length of the songs is not even 3 minutes!)

Special word for AB. I am no fan of his, but after hearing the song he has sung, I am forced to believe that very soon he will have no work to do in movies. The reason – There won’t be any ‘new’ things for him to try! Take a bow, Auro!

Peace and equanimity


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