Confirmed news of the Rang De Basanti music release came in at 1:30 PM, from Vasu, who informed me that Sudhir had bought the CD on the way to the office, in the morning.

On the way to Planet M, I told myself that there was a fair chance this might be the CD that breaks the 200 Rs price barrier, and I talked myself into agreeing that I would NOT buy it if it were so. Well, it wasn’t. 160 Rs, 10 songs. What makes me crack up is that I also saw the CD of Rajkumar Santoshi’s Family, on sale for the same price, along with a couple of songs from Khakee included. Would really like to know how well sales of that soundtrack fares…

First Impressions:

Current count: two listens. And counting.

Begins with a one-and-a-half-minute Punjabi track ‘Ik Onkar’ which is all vocals ( songer: Harshdeep Kaur). Neat mutitracking. The title track, by Daler Mehndi and Chitra comes next – though pretty catchy, I thought it a trifle too long. The banjo beginning was not a banjo after all – sounds like a very familiar (Korg?) sample. ‘Paathshaala’, both the normal and the remix version ( which guest-stars Blaaze) is the kind of dance song that you really cannot dance to. I sincerely hope Blaaze’s version stays on the album and does not appear in the film. Boys was the pinnacle of his career – let’s leave it at that. ‘Khalbali’ was the most interesting song – faux Middle-eastern percussion, faux Middle-eastern lilt to the singing, authentic Arabic lyrics/vocals by Rai singer Cheb Nacim ( Or is it some other Nacim? No idea, really), Rahman’s grating accent when he sings it being the only minus to the song. I shan’t let my occasional hatred for Madhushree’s voice taint my judgement of the song ‘Tu Bin Bataaye’, but it sounds run-of-the-mill, really. ( Which means I will consider this the favourite song of the album after about two weeks.) Naresh Iyer’s voice sounds fabulous on this song, though.

One good thing about the album is that it gets better, or seems to, at least, with every song. ‘Khoon Chalaa’ by Mohit Chauhan ( of Silk Route) is a soft ballad that would sound like a Silk Route number if you replace the violin with the recorder. Minimal percussion, orchestral strings, well-written lyrics. Two very acoustic guitar-driven songs round off the album – ‘Luka Chhupi’ by Lata Mangeshkar and ARR, which is decent. Would have been catchier with a different female voice, but I feel that about every Lata song nowadays, so nevermind. ‘Roobaru’ is radio-friendly 90’s alt rock. The much-hyped Aamir Khan number, called ‘Lalkaar’, is more of a poetry recital, sounds like ‘Unnodu Naan’ from Iruvar than anything else, the words being nearly the same as “Sarfaroshi ki Tamanna” from the Legend of Bhagat Singh.

How’s Rang De Basanti going to fare as far as the charts go? Not too much, I guess. Aashiq Banaaya Aapne will win the Filmfare Award for best music, probably best singer too, beating Salaam Namaste in a close race. Do I look like I fucking care?


9 thoughts on “RDB

  1. Anonymous says:

    ARR vs Harris

    arr i feel recently seems to be losing it … i dont know why (i am a gr8 fan mind u) in the tamil industry its his ex assistant Harris jayraj whose calling the shots (though again he tends to get repetitive)… however harris’s Uyirin Uyirae(from Kaakka Kaakka) and Oru Maalai (Ghajini) stand out as one of his best songs… i guess ive veered away from the topic of arr… i’ll still chec out rang de…

    The Observer

    • Re: ARR vs Harris

      Kaakka Kaakka was one of the best Tamil scores I’ve heard in a long while. However, I think it’s a bit premature to count Jayaraj in the same league as ARR.

    • Re: ARR vs Harris

      I have really stopped bothering about whether Rahman has lost it or still has it or even figuring out what “it” is – buying a Rahman album as early as possible has become a part of life, my way of saying Thanks to him for giving me a new perspective about music at an early age. While I have not become one of those old, vitriolic fogies you find on rec.music.indian.misc (the ones that state that there has been no good music since 1950), I also find it really tough to club Harris Jayaraj, or anyone else into the mental slot I have put AR Rahman in. As far as I am concerned, they are all wannabes with a couple of hits to their name. :)

  2. On Rajkumar Santoshi’s Family, I heard a song called “khatra khatra” on television. My eyes, Oh God my eyes!

    I will go buy the CD today, but you take Raja up on the offer, man. You should be doing Indrajit Hazra’s job.

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