Not even A.R Rahman (hereafter referred as GOD) generates the excitement which Gulzar-Vishal do to me and the way this magical duo is giving us all musical treats, I was quite sure that ‘Ishqiya’ would be another masterpiece. Is it so? Let us find it out

4. Badi Dheere Jali – (Rekha Bharadwaj) – Faint Sitar and fainter Tabla open this song. A dense feel overall with a sense of stillness is delivered almost effortlessly by Rekha Bharadwaj. In between the listener is presented some intense notes on Sarod which are just breathtaking and contribute to the ‘static’ mood of the song. Anyone who has appetite for ‘Gulzary blues’ (now don’t ask me what’s that? If you don’t know it, you probably won’t get it anyway) will rush to the ‘repeat’ button almost every time this song ends. Not a kind of song which you would like to play in a party or a social gathering. This one is for those soulful moments (often mistaken as ‘sadness’). Thank Vishal for introducing a more mature sound in hindi film music.

3. Ab Mujhe Koi – (Rekha Bharadwaj) – Soothing notes on the piano start the song with lyrics so purely ‘Ghalib’ like that you are bound to remind yourself of ‘Wo firaq aur wo visal kahan’ from Mirza Ghalib album sung by Jagjit Singh. The mood is what is common between the two compositions and not the music setting. This song has a welcome mix of acoustic and electric guitar which sets the mood just right. Special mention of the stanzas which are sung ‘just right’ by Rekha Bharadwaj who is fast becoming a synonym for a ‘pakka’ singer. Trust Gulzar saab to gently slip a word or two of the romantic Urdu language to gradually raise the intellect of people who are busy with words like singh, king etc and blend them perfectly in the song.

2. Dil to Bachcha hai (Rahat Fateh ali Khan) – Ah! The Sufis shall play! Well nearly! The ever so fantastic Rahat Fateh ali khan is well accompanied by the claps and accordion giving a perfect sufi feel to the song which deals with the magical dilemma of a grown up man who is in love with a somewhat younger dame. I use the word ‘grown up’ man because the heart, well cannot grow old can it? The lyrics, the music, the singer…everyone seems in perfect harmony in this song. You will smile when Rahat fateh ali Khan uses word like ‘Kamina’ and ‘Paaji’ with perfect aplomb. The arresting feature of the song is the beginning (guitar) and the end (accordion). While a mischievous guitar treads like a little child who must pass the sleeping adults (without making any sound of his footsteps) the closing notes from the accordion are touching and have a classic retro feel. All in all a fantastic song!

1. Ibn-e-Batuta (Sukhwinder & Mika) – Woooooooohoooooooooooo! Here comes the killer! The song starts with the sound of a horn being honked on the road (if you listen to this in your car, you are bound to look back by the way because It sounds damn neat and real!) and almost immediately a wild and totally ‘boyish’ electric guitar swoops in! Sukhwinder and Mika go behind the microphone and run a ruckus which is just melodiously wild! Gulzar saab again comes at it with lovely hindi words like ‘Durghatna and Gati-rodhak’ (meaning accident and speed-brakers). The rendition of ‘Churrrrrrrrrrrr’ is just so typical Sukhwinder having fun. It’s actually a good mix – Mika as always has a sticky feel and doesn’t have any throw in his voice and for the same reason, Sukhwinder sounds even more melodious and talented! A ‘road’ song by all means!

Remixes

A) Dil to bachcha hai remix – is done with class. Very nice to hear Rahat fateh ali khan with some heavy music in the background. Not to be missed is the guitar who is no longer mischievious but au contraire very bold in this song!

B) & C) – Ibn-e-batuta remix and Ibn-e-batuta nucleya remix – Am sure these numbers are added to give the album a very ‘wholesome film music album’ feel but they aren’t all that bad. Especially the pure remix version which has the vocals of Sukhwinder and Mika in 4X speed at times!

Finally

Thank God that Gulzar saab continues to write for hindi films

Thank God Vishal’s talent is out in the open and he is at a place where he can experiment!

Thank God for Rekha Bhaaradwaj! If she can sing sufi Qalams like ‘Ishqa Ishqa allah hu’ she can also singh ‘Raat ke Dhai baje’ and she can also make your heart sink with the kind of songs she sings in this album!

Peace and equanimity