Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Melody makes a comeback

If the Van Gogh wasn't sufficient enough of a clue, today one is reviewing Aamir Khan's directorial venture, Taare Zameen Par, with music by the trio, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy.

No doubt, its a "No B.S." album. None of the gimmickry that is usually associated with a Bollywood album. This one is straight-up good, multi-genre music, served fresh. And its the return of classic S-E-L music. And mind you, not the Jhoom-Barabar S-E-L or even the Bunty Aur Babli S-E-L.

This is the stuff that belongs on the shelf with albums like Dil Chahta Hai and Rockford (Remember "Aasmaan ke paar shaayad aur koi aasmaan hoga" ?). And even Iqbal.

The title track, Taare Zameen Par which you see in the promos, is dreamy. Brilliantly rendered by Shankar, its somehow reminiscent of the "verse" of Roja's title track, with delicate instrumentation and tinkles. To contrast this tangentially, comes the second track, Kholo Kholo, which has a rock/blues feel. Very Parikrama meets Lucky Ali. Both these songs set the pace for what is truly a roller coaster of a soundtrack.

My favorite track in the set - Shankar's rendition of the uncomplicated ballad, Maa. Historically, Bollywood has given us very few "Mother's Day" songs, where we get to laud that one special lady in our lives. One of my favorites used to be a song in Sagarika's private album, but it was still missing a significant element.

This song fills that long-standing void. Sadly, the lyrics of the verse aren't generic enough that everyone can relate to it, as they are rather specific to situations in the movie. However, the overall song is heart-rendered, and strikes a perfect resonance with the listener.

Its been forever since I've heard a light ballad that could carry a ton of emotions. Brilliant stuff.

Main kabhi batlaata nahin,
Par andhere se darta hoon main, maa
Yun to main, dikhlaata nahin,
Teri parwaah karta hoon main, maa

Tujhe sab hai pataa, hai na, maa?

Tujhe sab hai pataa, meri maa

Simple words. You only have to be able to portray your flow of thought and emotion, lucidly, and in a way that's pleasing to the ear, in order to be a good lyricist. The simplicity of the lyrics of this song go to prove that one does not have to be purposefully obfuscatory and complex and distorted in order to win the hearts of your audience. Are you listening, Gulzar Sahab?

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