Kahaani establishes the mood of Udaan with its whispered beginning slowly developing into a electric guitar-fuelled rock piece. The title song is more conventional, with a catchy riff and words of quiet rebellion. It is a little weak though, in comparison to the songs that follow. Geet... is wonderful - somehow the Amits manage to perfectly capture a sunbeam of naive optimism. The mood is upbeat and there's some very nice use of harmony and guitars. The two also have an interesting singing partnership - this is as far removed from Bandmasters Rangila and Rasila as you can get.
For me, Naav is the standout song from the album. I'm assuming Mohan (I don't know who he is!) is the lead singer. Though the diction is a little odd, the delivery is wonderful. The thought is age-old: a call to overcoming impediments, but the metaphor (of a boat struggling for breath) was new to me. You will scarcely find a more rousing song to listen to when you are sinking to the dumps. Compositions like these put the 'rock' in rock. (Here's a link to the lyrics for this song.)
Aazaadiyaan reminds me a lot of a previous Amit Trivedi song - "Ik Lau" (Aamir) - it has the same lingering start and perhaps the openings of are similar too, though the tempo is different. The sitar riff is very pleasing, and serves as a springboard for the rest of the song to take off (almost literally).
In contrast, Motumaster is quite out of place. To be fair, it has been designed as an 'arbit' ad-hoc kind of song (Anurag Kashyap's official debut as lyricist?) and is quite hilarious in parts ('kamar to naapte hai magar hum kamraa kaise naape?"). But it might have been better off being just in the film and not on the album. The concluding instrumental piece is reflective and appropriate.
One reason why Udaan's soundtrack works is because the story and treatment seem to be tailormade for the Amits. Amit Trivedi is very good at the rock-folk milieu and is able to bring his own bag of tricks to it. I wonder how he will deal with more commercial ventures. One of the pleasures of listening to his albums is to hear very new voices. Who are these Neuman Pinto/Joi Barua/Mohan/Nikhil D'Souza? Now we've heard them and of them. But if he goes more mainstream, how will this work out for them? But I do wish Amit Trivedi didn't feature on every other song s- he's got a raspy voice suited only for certain types, and he might be overdoing it a tad.
In short, listen to Udaan.
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