Kamli – Nooran Sisters 

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You can listen to the music review of this modest and at times wayward album here on B.B.C. Hindi http://www.bbc.co.uk/hindi/media-39748065

If only someone can tell Nooran sisters that they dont have to try so hard in every song that it dilutes the soul and melody at times. 

Sultan – Music review (Text + Audio link)

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Music in a Salman Khan film is always a delicate affair. The composer(s) job is to give a good thump, but not excessive rhythm because then bhai would have to dance and that is not his strongest point. While doing this, the composer should also give ‘full on’ emotion to the album. Let’s see if Vishal Shekhar have been able to win so many fights in Sultan‘s soundtrack.

Baby Ko Bass Pasand Hai…

In addition to a ‘sing these songs by the dozens so I can rock these songs easily’, Vishal Dadlani, what will catch your attention are the lyrics and the way the hook is nicely woven into the lyrics. Shalmali Kholgade, Ishita, Badshah add the desi oomph in style, a thoroughly enjoyable song!

Jag Ghoomeya

Rahat Fateh Ali khan was singing too many similar songs in most of his Bollywood outings till sometime back, only to be replaced by Arijit Singh. As a result we haven’t been bombarded with many songs by Rahat off late. Call it the result of this gap or anything you like, Jag Ghoomeya sounds borderline refreshing. Make no mistake, the ‘bolly romantic template’ is at work here as well, just that lyrics and Rahat’s singing compliment each other very well here. There is another version of the song by Neha Bhasin and thanks to those strings that you hear with the ‘too good to believe’ solid vocals of Neha, this version beats all the songs of this film hands down. Isn’t it good to get a song that makes you all gooey and reminds you of the ace singer Reshma?

440 Volt

440 Volt gets its cheekiness from Mika and will most likely get its mass following thanks to the onscreen efforts of the protagonist to dance. Yet again, in spite of a ‘heard before’ tune, what helps this song are the lyrics by Irshad Kamil. It might not be repeat worthy, but at least the song doesn’t sound cheap.


Sultan has Sukhvinder Singh and Shadab Faridi doing their best to tell us that this is a high energy song. It is at best the ‘skip this pls’ song on the playlist. An underwhelming arrangement and bored singing vie for honours here. Rise Of Sultan by Shekhar Ravjiani and chorus is also underwhelming because you cannot offset a bad tune with excessive structuring of heavy instruments. Enough said.

Sachi Muchi

Sachi Muchi by Mohit Chauhan and Harshdeep would probably be the flattest song this year. With an arrangement that could have been used so well, we get a lame song that practically achieves nothing and celebrates its mediocrity with a bunch of tired backup vocalists.


Papon gets to sing Bulleya and he excels in it. If only the tune was more refreshing, it could have been ‘repeat’ worthy. Here, the song comes across as an accessory to probably move the narrative forward in slow motion on screen. In spite of Kamil’s earlier interaction with ‘Bulleh Shah’ where apparently kass ke mujhe galey lagaya happened, the lyrics here are saner.

Tuk Tuk

Noora Sisters and Vishal Dadlani present an interesting experiment to us in Tuk Tuk and inspite of being at their earthy best, what steals this song is the ‘pehelwaan rap’ done by Vishal Dadlani. Our traditional sports deserve more ‘cool’ treatment, so kudos to everyone associated with this song for a step in that direction.

Music album wise, If your last few outings have been Kick, Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Prem Ratan Dhan Payo, you can only go up from there. With some good thump in Baby Ko Bass and Pehelwaan Rap (Tuk Tuk) and Neha Bhasin’s Jag Ghoomeya, the album does have something going for it. For keeping the ‘bhainess’ alive in most songs and sparks of brilliance in others, I liked the album, just about. Having said that, it is probably the best music album for a ‘bhai-film’ in a long long time.

This review appeared first on Quint here

You can hear the review on B.B.C. website here

Highway – Music review

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This review appeared first here – http://www.timeoutmumbai.net/music/cd-review/album-review-highway

Unabridged version of the review is here – http://moifightclub.wordpress.com/2014/01/27/highway-music-nashe-mein-ud-jaaye-re-haaye-re/

After Rockstar Imtiaz Ali is back with his latest romance-drama Highway starring Randeep Hooda and Alia Bhatt. With the genius of AR Rahman, Ali presents the film’s nine-track soundtrack.

The first and probably most popular song of the album is “Patakha Guddi”, an electronic track with the electric duo of Sultana and Jyoti Nooran who have given us one of the best sufi-sque film songs in a long time. It’s a typical Rahman song, one that is devoid of any hook and flows boldly and confidently throughout. Watch out, party people, DJs have a new song to ensure everyone attacks the dance floor. There is incidentally a male version of “Patakha Guddi” too and even though Rahman has rendered the Punjabi language with zest, his version has more layers than the Nooran could evoke. The excellent near shred guitar play along with lyrical twist makes his rendition a blast! Next up is “Maahi Ve”  that perfect tune for a long drive. Its excellent back-up vocals, however subtle, truly uplift the track. Jonita Gandhi makes “Kahaan Hoon Main” sound irresistibly exotic despite its serious lyrics. Thanks to a generous dose of keyboards and violins, the song has a lot of character and depth which might not suit the film’s premise of a truck driver and rural Indian roads. The next one will surely surprise everyone. Don’t be surprised if you see “Wanna Mash Up?”  borrowed by a Hollywood producer for a Fast and the Furious-esque film. Kash, Krissy and Suvi Suresh (with the former two penning lyrics) literally bring the house down with this top class composition. This is Rahman at his experimental best with no inhibitions. We can understand why Irshad kamil who has worked on most of rest of the album, didn’t provide the words for “Wanna…”

An adorable hum by Alia Bhatt herself kickstarts “Sooha Saha” which has Zeb croon about the folk music of the hills. Zeb lends the solidity to the song whereas the young actress provides cute innocence, making it a perfect balance. The second track of the album by wordsmiths Kash and Krissy is “Implosive Silence” performed by Gandhi. With a hauntingly simple arrangement, the track’s lyrics are extremely difficult to decipher. However, you actually don’t need to find the meaning of the words here. It is all about the feeling and the atmosphere that the song creates. After this is “Tu Kuja” a traditional song sung by Sunidhi Chauhan that envelops you in its trance. It’s actually an old composition in which Kamil has added Hindi words for a contemporary effect. We honestly felt the track was a bit cluttered and would have been better off with Rahman’s voice. Finally, “Heera” ends the album. Rahman ceremoniously presents saint and poet Kabir’s writing in his  trademark fashion with enough Violins to make anyone cry with pleasure.

The lyrics are top class and the music is superlative. After long, we’ve come across an album where we’re not reaching for the fast forward button.

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