Music from the heavensKhoya Khoya Chand
We must be pardoned for being excited about the return of the trio of Sudhir Mishra, Shantanu Moitra, and Swanand Kirkire, after the melancholy magic of "Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi". Their latest paean to movies of the Dev-saab era is nicely titled, though I still prefer the previous title "Bahut Nikle Mere Armaan".
The music is a refreshing throwback to the sounds of the likes of S.D.Burman. Though, I found some of the songs (and singers) a little underwhelming, and not very memorable (yet). The attempt is praise-worthy though, and seems to capture some of the lilt of those times. The standout songs for me were the title track, a thumri called "Chale Aao Saiya.n", and the opening of "Thirak Thirak".
Swanand Kirkire takes up the mike for a very rough-edged "Khoya Khoya Chand" with great effect, capturing some of the moods of "Baawra Mann" that he so effectively rendered last time. The "sitaare noch luu.n" bit seemed a little jarring, but overall, the lyrics are quite wonderful. Shreya Ghosal with "Chale Aao Saiya.n" is excellent, as is the song itself. It has a very nice ebb and flow. The leading percussion of "Thirak Thirak" is very reminiscent of "Hotho.n Pe Aisi Baat" and is terrific on its own, but the rest of the song never quite lives up to the promise of the song, though the sargam that outlines the title track is pleasing.
In his review, Raja Sen mentions that Moitra yet again uses an old English song. Assuming this is true, I wonder why Moitra does so, spoiling his scorecard each time. Unless this is an underhand dig at how, even in that so-called Golden Age, many of our hit Bollywood songs came from sources.
Since the other songs also do have many elements of interest, this album is worth many a listen.
Taare Zameen Par
Rounding off this season's astronomically-inspired film titles is Aamir Khan's first-as-director (somewhat appropriately, like the other 'perfectionist' before him did with "Chachi 420", he took up the baton displeased with the results of the earlier director). Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy provide music for this, and return to "Rockford" territory. Prasoon Joshi, who like Kirkire, has provided hope for the lyrically-minded listener, does a good job along with the trio.
A simple but different-sounding album, punctured slightly by the need to insert some nonsense lyrics in some of the songs, is what results. (The Vishal-Gulzar combination still is safely top of the pack when it comes to songs of children-centric films.) My own favourites from this album are the title track (sung with feeling by Shankar Mahadevan), the guitar-laced "Kholo Kholo", and the quietly sentimental "Maa".
In a very nice touch, the music was released at the hands of the ailing Shammi Kapoor. Again, worth giving your time and attention, this album.
And at the risk of jinxing it, the wait for the music of "Jodha-Akbar" grows more intense with the trailers and "Marhaba" playing.