Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

Now that the (relatively) less controversial piece is done, here comes the more controversial listing. The Top 5 Hindi songs of last year. And here it goes

Top 5 Hindi songs

5. Ibn – E – Batuta (Ishqyiya): Composed by Vishal Bharadwaj, it is easily one of the catchiest songs of the year and was used quite extensively in the promos of the movie. Starting off with the blaring of horns and featuring Sukhwinder Singh & Mika, its an amazingly energetic song with fairly crazy lyrics. (Come on now, any song that starts off featuring the great traveler with a different name immediately catches attention). The duo of Sukhwinder & Mika simply have a blast singing this and Sukhwinder is brilliant when his voice goes does an octave while singing “Ud Ud aawe”

4. Pee Loon (Once Upon a time in Mumbai): Emraan Hashmi has this luck of having extremely croonable songs in his movie, no matter how otherwise the movie is and he continues that with this song. (In fact, one can say he specializes in making musical thrillers :D). Excellently rendered by Mohit Chouhan & composed by Pritam, its an extremely hummable song. With a background score of Sufi music & Chouhan’s distinctive voice, its worth listening a million times

3. Bahara (I Hate Luv Stories): Have I ever mentioned that I totally love Shreya Ghoshal. This song is no exception. In a way, this song reminds me of Iktara from Wake Up Sid, but that can totally be attributed to the folksy start to the song. Otherwise, while not a really very complicated song with layered music, its simple and therein lies its strength. Very pleasant song and delightfully sung, Bahara is a must-listen.

2. Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey (Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey): One of the most under-rated albums of last year, for a movie that sank quite badly. While I profess not to have seen the movie (A combination of Deepika Padukone (whom I totally abhor) & Abhishek Bachchan (mild indifference) overwhelmed the fact that it was an Ashutosh Gowarikar movie), the music is simply awesome. Sohail Sen, take a bow. The title track is easily the pick of the lot. Featuring kids from Suresh Wadhkar’s music academy, its a stirring song. Starting off hauntingly with the theme of the teenager’s whistle, it descends into a music piece vaguely reminding one of Chale Chalo from Lagaan and then the chorus steps in and from then, the song simply becomes outstanding. In fact, starting from 1:10 into the song till 2:25, there are 5-6 pieces of distinctive music, each of which flows seamlessly into the other. Amazingly brilliant piece of work

2. Uff Teri Ada (Karthik Calling Karthik): An ultimate rocking song but with a difference. Quite a different start with a slow burn start with Shankar Mahadevan lending his heavy vocals to the song until the song descends into a full blown party song when Alyssa Mendonsa croons her ways. After that, there is nothing to stop your feet from tapping and your body from swaying to the music. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy have never really gone wrong with their party songs and this is no different. Shankar M’s classical tone to the song quite stands out in what is an evidently techno track

1. Dil To Bachcha Hai Ji (Ishqiya): A soft lilting retro song, brought to life by astonishingly gifted Rahet Fateh Ali Khan, Dil To Bachcha Hai is indeed a delight to listen to and one never really gets tired. A hint of guitar, a playful dash on the harmonium, a touch of beat, all playing in a loop keep the song really simple but the beauty of the song lies in it simplicity. Rahet’s fairly unorthodox voice lends an etheral charm to the song and nowhere is it best expressed than when he goes “Dil sa koi kameena nahi”. Elevating the song is Gulzar’s playful lyrics but astonishingly powerful lyrics. An amazingly song, undisputedly the top song of the year

Notable mentions: Of course, how can any post on the best Hindi songs of 2010 not have the 2 of the most popular item songs of the year, Munni & Sheila. Munni is a throwback to the 80s-early 90s item song in a throwback to the 80s-90s movie Dabbang and totally rocked but Sheila, a modern item song totally rocked. Any song that actually got Katrina Kaif to emote and actually look like she was enjoying totally deserves respect over any other song

As I was compiling a list of top songs from 2010, inevitably it sequenced into a list of top AR Rahman songs of the year. It does help that no other composer comes close to the range and sheer variety of songs (across languages) that he produces in the year (It also helps that with ARR’s name behind an album, there is this built-in rating system that systematically rates his songs a notch higher than any other composer). Hence, this list is sequenced into Top ARR songs for the year and another post with top non-ARR songs for the year
Top 5 ARR songs for the year

5. Hello (Jhoota Hi Sahi): It’s a no-brainer that any song featuring Karthik & ARR would easily be among the top of any list that I make. Hello is one of the most quirkiest as well as the most unusual sounding song in the list. Karthik’s whispering voice (almost sounding back of the throat) lends an almost surreal tone to the song. However, this is mere seasoning to the song where the real flavor comes from the music itself. No one could use ring tones, dial tones, engaged tones and still make the song as enticing as ARR could do. The combination of Karthik’s eerie haunting voice and ARR’s synthetic telephonic music makes for an fundamentally awesome song

5. Beera (Raavan): An African styled chant and high energy beats, all echoing to Vijay Prakash’s awesome authoritative voice make for a heady folksy thumping song. In fact, like most ARR’s songs, its heavily layered, around 50 seconds into the song, there is a very soft stringed section which begin which segues into a klarionic burst around 1.18 mins into the song. Sheer brilliance

Note: I know I said top 5 but it’s such a difficult choice to make with ARR that I have decided to break my own rules and hell, if I can’t break my own rules.

4. Behne De (Raavan)/ Usure Pogudhe (Raavanan): This is really one of those songs in which one can notice a profound change in ARR from, lets say 10 years ago. The ARR of 10 years ago would have probably have started the voice in around 20-25 seconds but here he draws you with the music, makes you wait, almost to the point of tense-ness from where Karthik takes over. And what a brilliant take. Almost rhythmically flowing into the song with a voice expressing pain and anguish as well as wonder, Karthik is way beyond phenomenal.
Behne De:

Usure Pogudhe:

3. Call me Dil (Jhoota Hi Sahi): A soft melodious number, right up ARR’s alley. Soft lilting acoustic strings and Rashid Ali’s brilliant voice lend an ethereal charm to this song, and the lyrics are simply astounding and to an extent, pain filled. An exceptional song, easily one of the best of the year.

2. Naan Varuven (Raavanan)/ Jaare Udjaare (Raavan): Surprisingly left out of the album, my first introduction to the song was during the movie climax and needless to say it was love at first listen. ARR has simply become really the master of slow soft melodious numbers with his interplay of the piano and guitar strings. But where he really shines is he does not let the instruments intrude into the song and allows the singer (in this case ARR himself) to carry the song. Again, he gets the whole African flavor to creep in, especially when he goes “O Beera”. High marks for the lyrics especially in the Tam version, Loved those 3 lines of “Oru Pillai…. Athil Artham….Artham Puriyum…Vazhuvu Maaruthe”.
Tam Version:

Hindi Version:

1. Aaromale (Vinnaithandi Varuvaya): Wattay song, truly, wattay song. Truly one of the most different songs to have been composed by ARR. Almost reminiscent of a slow English rock song, this song is maverick-esque (if there be a word) in nature. Alphonse’s voice again is a non-traditional voice and seems to be a perfect fit for the song. The real beauty of the song is the mixing of the Western Rock as well as the Indian classical music. Malayalam lyrics with a violin accompaniment adds even more layers to what is already a mulit-layered song. A simply once-in-a-lifetime-out-of-the-world experience

1. Hosanna (Vinnaithandi Varuvaya): Another of the genre transcending music pieces by ARR. Starts off softly with a rap piece in between (in both English & Tamil) and again segues in a soft piece. Vijay Prakash again strikes gold for ARR along with Blaaze (on the rap) while special mention has to go to Suzanne for her mesmerizing humming lending an out-of-the-world experience to the song. The best part is just when you think the song is about to end (around 4:10), its picks up tempo and carries for another 90 seconds and the violin pieces really stand out. Truly astounding

Other notable ARR songs for 2010:
Raavan – Thok De Killi & Kata Kata
(Komaram) Puli (Telugu) – Amma Thale & Maaralante
Enthiran – Kadhal Anukkal, Arima Arima & Irumbiley oru Irudhayam

AR Rahman’s “Kalayil Dhinamum Kan Vizhithaal” was probably his finest song praising mothers until the shuffle on my ipod threw up the song, Uyirum Neeye from the movie Pavithra. Sung by Unnikrishnan (who coincidentally is also the singer for the Kalayil song) with amazing lyrics from Vairamuthu, this is THE song.

This blog post is dedicated to all moms especially my super mom

While I profess neither to have followed you diligently overall nor understood the lyrics of the songs penned by you, I am eternally grateful to you for giving one of my favorite Mallu song, “Marivillin Gopurangal” from the movie Summer in Bethlehem. The magic in the song would not be possible without your lyrics. Thanks for that piece of magic.

Vinaithaandi Varuvaaya marks the first Tamil ARR score to come out after his Oscar (and now Grammy) awards and also marks the first time, that he is composing for Gautham Menon (who was searching for a new composer after relationships soured with Harris Jeyraj). Gautham Menon is the modern day master of the intense yet soft yet no-nonsense romance and has had great music delivered to him by Harris previously and pressure is on ARR to deliver something virtually outstanding. The story for the movie is semi autobiographical, featuring an assistant film director falling in love with a Malayali Christian and stars Simbu and Trisha. Normally, with this combo, one can forget about acting but with Gautham at the helm, one is confident that he definitely can get the pair to act

Strong chords mark the start of the album with the song Aaromale. A strong western feel arises from the song and the overall feel is that of a slow rock song. With Mallu music director, Alphonse singing, and with Mallu lyrics throughout, the album has a definite different start to it. Suddenly in the song, you have a chant of Swasthi Swashti lending an almost religious marriage level feel to the song which jells well with the song and lends it a different quality. Alphonse singing Aaromale is simply awesome. The highlight of the song is easily the interaction between the various instruments. There are moments where you can hear just the chords playing, while in others, you have the violins leading the music along with the other instruments. It easily is one of the most polarizing piece ARR has composed. You either love it or hate it but you really cannot avoid it. All in all, an awesome start to the album

Shreya Ghoshal starts off in her distinct tones for the song Mannipaaya. The lyrics of this song are quite brilliant and as Kavity pointed ,its quite rare for a girl to ask forgiveness in a relation. ARR lends the male vocals to the song. There is an almost flowing quality to the song and one can hear the interplay of sitars in between. While the song is quite pleasant, there is a feel that the song is definitely not very special (Probably an opinion that will change on repeated hearings; I still have not found the song very appealing). There is a chorus bit in the between that is changes the tone of the song in between which is fairly endearing

Unusual instrument combos mark the start of the song Omana Penne, and is easily one of the distinctive ARR musical pieces owing to its dependence on computer generated music. Benny Dayal, who gets impressive after each and every song, hits stride. One simply loves the way Benny’s voice conveys softness and his voice is very flexible, hitting all the right feelings. There is a beautiful nadhaswaram piece in between that simply lends a contrast and yet contributing to the flow of the song. The nadhaswaram piece then continues to play for the rest of the song and is simply superb. Another very well executed song

Techno start to the next song, Anbil Avan, reminds one of the song Ho Elamai from Godfather. There are quite a few similarities to that song. However, we get to hear Devan after ages which is quite refreshing. Devan has a quite a distinctive voice and makes good use of it. The song deals with the marriage and makes for interesting listening as there are portions where there is the cello playing and then the nadaswaram playing to the Anandam Anandam Anandame, quite reminding one of the immortal Margo Margo song from Vetrivizha. Chinmayi is her usual self. However, this song is more of about the music than the singers

Karthik is the singer for the title track. As most reading this blog are aware, I have a huge bias towards Karthik. However, in this case, this was one song that was fairly lukewarm. He sings the song well no doubt and the music is also quite good. However, the combo is not good at all and is actually fairly disappointing considering that post collaborations of ARR and Karthik have given totally awesome songs. There almost seems to a jarring note of discontinuity in the song

A brilliant violin piece marks the start of Kannukkul Kannai, (that piece is also my now my ringtone). Another ARR regular, Naresh Iyer is the singer. This is a fairly ordinary song differentiated only by the brilliant violin playing in the background. It is also a typical Naresh song and he hardly has to exert himself. A good filler piece, may or may not feature in the movie. There are of course moments on brilliance in the song, when there is this whole techno wave going on in the background when Naresh sings “Un Nanban Illai…”

Hosanna, the last of the album is fittingly the best. Hosanna is used in the Christian context as a cry of praise and adoration. Vijay Prakash starts of the song in his usual impressive self and there is an awesome background score that is pretty much like the wind blowing softly and the female backing along with the concert of violins simply provide the right mood for the song, which changes tone when Blaaze enters with his unique brand of rap, which only adds to the mystique of the song. This is a multilayered song with very subtle strings overlapping with musical bits of the flute. One of those ARR songs where the female chorus voice is simply astounding. The lyrics are quite fitting describing a lover’s feelings when the girl walks into his life

Its been after ages that there has been an ARR album in which you like most of the songs on first listen and VV falls strongly into that category. His passion for experimentation and creating different music has only increased after the Oscar (even if the time he has for Indian filmdom has reduced) and this reflects strongly in the album. Gautham Menon is really blessed. Harris Jeyraj saved his best efforts for Gautham Menon and despite a change in music director, ARR has only pushed the bar higher.

Rating – 8.5/10

Song Worm!!!!

Posted: October 26, 2009 in Music
Tags: , ,

is  a song that gets stuck in your head for a really long time. Just realized how bad it can. This one song called “Oy Oy” from the rather (un)imaginatively titled movie “Oy” has been playing from the morning on my Ipod. Even if I change the song, thats the one that keeps playing in the mind-space and hence, I am forced to listen to the song again so that I dont have to hear my (rather tone- and tune-less) voice singing that song.

Worst thing is it is not like the song is a really awesome song. Just damn peppy and catchy. Oy stars Siddarth and Shamili and the song is sung by Siddarth himself. Music is by Yuvan Shankar Raja.

Arrgh, I have listened to the song over 50 times now. So obsessed over it that I have even have the lyrics and its translation almost by heart.

For those interested, heres the song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xh15B6JICcU and heres the lyrics and translation: http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20090723022049AAuIkge

There the song starts again

PS: Gult songs also rock. Listening to so many of those these days. Would be better if I understood what they are singing though

One of the costliest Bollywood movies to come out, Blue is notable as this could well be the last AR Rahman album on the Indian movie scene for sometime as he gets really busy with Hollywood projects (Check out the new ARR score for Couples Retreat). The movie has also been gaining hajaar publicity with Kylie Minogue singing a song, underwater adventure news, the tiff between Akshay Kumar and Sanjay Dutt and the of course Lara Dutta’s costumes or rather the lack of them.

Blue

Blue

The album opens with the much hyped Kylie Minogue song “Chiggy Wiggy” (the kind of lyrics junta come up with and people call me arbit). Its an interesting song to say the least. It starts of like a western song with the Indian-ness coming through the typical ARR beats. Kylie’s voice is new but there is a feeling that something is missing, which vanishes the moment Sonu Nigam’s voice literally bursts through. After that the song is literally awesome with Sonu in full form belting it out with great gusto mixing high pitch portions with normal sounding portions. (With all apologies to non-Tam junta, the combo is literally like having aavakai ooruga with thayir saadam)

Rahman never ceases to surprise with his choice of instruments and Aaj dil Gustaakh is no exception. Featuring one of ARR’s favorite, Sukhwinder Singh and Shreya Ghoshal, its one of those songs where the piano and chords literally run wild. Listening to the song, one can literally imagine the fingers running wild over the keyboard creating the music. Its kind of free flowing and theres an almost jazzy effect produced. Sukhwinder Singh is his usual irrepressible self. I think he can just wake up and sing these kind of songs straight out of sleep. Shreya Ghoshal is awesome and her voice is like a hot fudge on chocolate icecream. It simply smoothly flows.

Vijay Prakash remains a very under utilized talent and it takes someone like ARR to remind us why with Fiqraana. Its a song that is a cross between Kaala Bandar (Delhi 6) and Dil ka Rishtaa (Yuvvraaj). Its a fairly peppy number and Vijay Prakash’s voice conveys  a sense of strength to the song. Shreya Ghoshal is the female voice and complements his voice brilliantly. In fact, while this song is out and out a Vijay Prakash song, Shreya Ghoshal’s voice enhances the effect.

Bhoola Tujhe is the best song of the album. Theres a quiet reflective quality to the music and in fact, it takes more than a minute for the vocals to start and you are not disappointed. Rashid Ali starts off on a brilliant note and never falters. His voice does perfect justice to the song and the music is very subtle. Theres a phase where the music almost flows in waves, increasing crescendo over each iteration. The lyrics are exquisite and best part is ARR lets the singer carry the song. Easily one of the best songs I have had the fortune to listen to. It takes great difficulty to stop gushing about Rashid Ali’s voice and there is a sense of regret once the song ends. The feeling is quite akin to finishing the full meals at Krishna Kafe. You would want to go on and on but one has to stop.

Next is the theme song. A psychedelic mix of guitars and bass drums, it is fairly ok types. In fact, it is one of the weakest theme songs from ARR in recent times.

Rehnuma should have been the theme song for the movie. There is an almost James Bond feel to the song and the usual firm of Sonu Nigam and Shreya Ghoshal handle the song with great aplomb. In fact, Shreya Ghoshal is the real star of the song pitching her voice perfectly and adding good depth to the song. Theres this portion in this song where Sonu Nigam goes around in his high pitch and Shreya Ghoshal provides a nice contrast going with the music.

Udit Narayan returns after ages for the song Yaar Mila Tha which is a nice folksy song. Madhushree is the female voice on the song. While it is indeed nice to hear Udit, the song itself isnt too special which is  a tad disappointing. There are a couple of typical ARR touches in the song, like sounds of horns honking in between words but still its a fairly routine number.

There is a certain expectation with ARR albums considering his last,  Delhi 6 was brilliant. While Blue is good, there is a certain spark missing. There seems to be not too much experimentation that ARR always brings with his album. Might be due to a time crunch but there are aspects that kind of seem hurried. But then even a fairly average ARR album stands heads and shoulders over other composers. May be we tend to simply expect more from ARR!!!

PS: To be fair to ARR, while the music aspect might lag a bit, it remains one of those albums in which he has got the best out of his singers. Shreya Ghoshal is simply brilliant while Sonu Nigam and Sukhwinder Singh sing with the kind of enjoyment that I have not heard from them in recent times while Vijay Prakash continues to impress majestically

PPS: Continuing with the food theme, Blue is a little bit like going to the Angeethi, having good food but not having the paan. There is a sense that you have had good food but you do have a feeling that you have missed out on something good. You are satiated but not overly so.

colonial-cousinsColonial Cousins – The pairing of Hariharan and Lesle Lewis – who burst upon the Indi-pop scene like a whiff of fresh air and gave us many brilliant unforgettable song, are back composing music for Saran’s Modhi Vilayadu. The album contains 6 songs, some rendered by Hari & Lewis as is their wont while roping in others to complete the set.

The album opens with the peppy and jazzy Vellaikari Vellakari, crooned by Hariharan, Lewis and Achu. Interesting combination of Tamil and English lyrics with some really zany lyrics like “Kangal Rendum Cocktail Parties” types. Makes for interesting listening. Resembles their “Sa-Re-Ga-Ma” and “The Way We Do It”. Neverthless, it is something new for Tamil music. Hariharan is his usual brilliant self as is Lewis. Trumpets and Guitars resonate throughout the song and lend an extremely jazzy feeling to the song.

Shaan, makes his debut in Tamil music world with the song Otrai Vaarthayil. Its a slow, soft and melodious number. It is uncanny how much voice resemblance is there between KK & Shaan as I initially thought it was KK. But KK rules as Shaan’s pronounciation is not quite as great as KK. But he more than makes it up with his effortless rendering of the song and it is to be said, he does get the emotions spot on for the song. Very nice lyrics. It is a beautiful song.

Lewis gets a chance to shine with the next song Chikki Mukki along with a new voice Surmukhi. We get English-accented Tamil diction from Lewis but as with Kannum Kannum Nokia, it is not unpleasent. There is an element of Western Classical in the song and fuses well with the Indian beats and instruments. Surmukhi’s voice is fairly pleasent as it is a quite easy going song and does not really have a chance to differentiate. Chikki Mukki would have been a fairly usual duet song but the energy and choice of instruments elevates the song to a song you would keep on listening for a few times more

Bombay Jayashree’s voice flows beatifully and sets the tone for the next song, Paadhikkadhal. Sunitha Sarathy’s raspy voice introduces a Western tone to the classical set-up and further enhances it. A song almost on the song on “You Tell Me You love me” from their earlier album, this is far more subtle and allows the singers to dominate rather than the music. Bombay Jayashree is quite brilliant and is fairly different from the usual songs she sings and Sunitha Sarathy contributes equally too.

Latcham Vaarthaigal is similar to Otrai Varthaiyil and is sung by Ranjani. It is pretty much the same song as Otrai Varthaiyil with different lyrics. After listening to both versions, while this version is nice, I found Shaan’s version nicer.

Last is the title song and is addressed to Dhoni (and in the current circumstances, it is something which Dhoni should listen). It is a kind of motivational song and Hariharan sets the pace but the real surprise is the Gaana king Deva lending his voice and it meshes well with Hari’s voice. This is almost a song that can fit in a Vijay movie but still enough to differentiate with other songs. Deva seriously rocks in this song and lyrics are the of the catchy kind and surely will be a huge hit.

Overall, the Colonial Cousins have packed an awesome package and one that has come as a whiff of fresh air for Tamil cinema.

albums-03Selvaraghavan’s Aayirathil Oruvan, in the making for over 2 years is one of the most anticipated movies of the year and apparently represents a different genre. A different movie requires a different feel and music which was one reason why Yuvan Shankar Raja was replaced in midst of the movie and replaced with the young GV Prakash. GV was turned in an album which is very difficult to classify. Highly unconventional and imaginative, there is however an undercurrent on introspection in the songs, with most of them veering towards classical and slow numbers.

Contrarily though, the album starts with a peppy number Oh Eesa – Composer’s music rendered by Karthik and Andrea. Karthik is his usual ebullient self, belting with great gusto while Andrea chips with English lyrics. However, what makes this song unusual is that one is unable to determine the kind of song it is. At certain portions, it seems like a hero intro kind of song while the song in itself resembles one of those SPB devotional song rendition. Certain portions lead to that feeling especially lines like “Make Way for the Lord” and a chant of “Govinda Govinda, take me higher Govinda”. A different song sets the tone for the album

Maalai Neram Mazhai starts off promisingly well with soft guitar strings setting up the tone. With minimal backing, the song flows slowly. Andrea is the vocalist and its more like she is talking rather than singing. But the effect is very nice. Her voice tends to get a bit husky as the song proceeds which is not quite natural but GV’s chorus is nice and does not stand out and complements Andrea’s voice. A slow nice number with subtle background music, this is a song that will grow on the listener as long as one does not get too irritated at Andrea’s English accented way of pronouncing Tamil word

Un Mela Aasadhaan sounds like the kind of song that a hero would sing as is the trend nowadays (I am looking at you, Vikram). I was partly right. It is not sung by Karthik, hero of the movie but by Dhanush. While he has got an amazingly irritating acting voice, he does a fairly decent job. In fact the song is quite catchy. Not too fast, its got a tone and pace of its own. Its got some mildly offensive lyrics but its a fairly good listen.

The first instrumental piece of the album is The King Arrives and has all that pomp and splendour initially and then descends into some fairly heavy guitar (of the head banging variety) but still retains an element of grandeur in it.

Cholan Ecstasy is a heavy classical number with old Tamil pronunciations and sung by Nithyashree and Vijay Yesudas. Nithyashree dominates as always and is highly impressive. Vijay Yesudas does a good job especially when going solo though he gets overshadowed by Nithyashree’s magnificence. The song’s tempo varies, slow to fast to slow again and is quite lovely. Hardly understood any lyrics, but it was very catchy and the ending sequence is very strong. Definitely one of the songs of the album.

Pemmane Perulagin was one of the songs talked even before the album was released as it features the yesteryear singer PB Srinivas. However, he takes his own time to make an entry. Before that however Bombay Jayashree stamps her influence on this slow song with astoundingly powerful lyrics. Its one of those songs which are like the motivational songs before a war or a great struggle and again one in which the voices dominate the music (a rarity nowadays).

The second instrumental piece, Celebration of Life uses some different instruments and the effect is quite impressive, especially when it coalesces with the beats. The song’s tempo increases and makes for some good listening. There is a 15 second burst towards the end where there is just one instrument playing which is a contrast from the beats previously.

Vijay Yesudas returns for the song Thai Thindra Manne which is another slow song with old Tamil dialect with a beautiful combination of the flute and the tabla. Vijay Yesudas is almost in a chant mode for 50% of the song, while conveying pain and suffering exquisitely. (An aside: After listening to the last 2 songs, which were the slow kind, one tends to get tired of this song especially as it is a 7 min song. This song should be listened seperately to appreciate it fully)

After all the heavy songs, Indha Paadhai Enge is a light breezy melody. GV himself sings it and again beautiful guitar work, be it the lead, the bass or the chords, marks this song. Again this does seem to be a mildly introspective song but one really is unable to pay much attention to the song as it moves fairly quickly.

A remix version of the composer’s mix rounds up the album with more importance to the Govinda part. Thankfully though, its a pretty decent remix and not of the cringing variety.

GV Prakash has come a long way and is cleary unafraid to experiment. Like his uncle (ARR), he is at home composing classical stuff while infusing it with enough elements to get the young generation also hooked on. Aayirathil Oruvan is one of the really different albums of 2009 and is a fairly unconventional album. A must listen.

Rating – 8.5/10

Its the next Surya-Harris Jeyraj combo after the brilliant and successful music of Vaaranam Aayirum and expectations are pretty high after their last success. Harris Jeyraj as a music composer has come a long way starting from Minnale and has many successful albums to his credit. However, a common grouse against him is that his tunes sound familiar and he has this tendency to throw out music that form part of the fillers that ARR uses. VA broke that trend and was refreshing but he falls back to previous failings in Ayan. It must be said however, that while the music might sound familiar, he still makes the song intensely listenable, and albums a hit

Ayan

Ayan

The album opens with Pala Pala. Sung by Hariharan, it is a fast-paced song, the likes of which Hariharan excels in and he does a brilliant job. Fast paced beats and rhythmic background instrumentals set up the song. There are portions of the song where the music goes to the background and Hariharan literally carries the song on his voice. These are among the really awesome moments of the album. However, one cant help noticing the resemblance to “Romeyo Aatam Pottal” from Mr. Romeo. Despite that, it is a very catchy song and will surely be on everyone’s lips.

Nenje Nenje opens brilliantly with the silky tones of Mahanti. Her voice is deftly complemented by great guitar work and set ups the stage for Harish Raghavendra to enter. He does not disappoint and starts up in the high pitch that he is blessed with and lends an awesome feel and mood for the song. Both Mahanti and Harish make a good pair and the music is simply brilliant before the second charanam. Lyrics for this song is A+ and it is among the best song in the album.

Honey Honey is a song that is quite different and may not be everyone’s cup of tea. The drums and use of instruments is pretty innovative. The singer, Sayanora Philips and Devan, lend a modern unnatural feel to the song, an almost rap feel to the song. But frankly, didnt appeal much to me and can safely be classified into those Harris Jeyraj compositions which you would never listen again unless the picturization of the song changes the view.

Vizhi Moodi marks another combination of Karthik-Harris and from previous successes including Oru Maalai and Anjale, you naturally expect another hit and you are not disappointed. While not an easy song to like, this song grows on you. The music is some cases is very minimalistic and Karthik’s voice renders it beautifully. The steady rythmic beats lend a nice melanchonic mood to the song and the lyrics fits in beautifully. The female voice backing is simply brilliant.

Finally, the youth song of the album, Oh Ya Ye Yaay. Another love-at-first-listen song, brilliantly rendered by Benny Dayal (Man he is getting impressive wih each album), Chinmayi and Haricharan, its a peppy number. It does have a certain resemblance to Adiye Kollude but still not as much in the rock genre. Haricharan impresses in the charanam and adds zest in the song. It is the pick of the album in my view.

Ayan, while definitely not the best or most original album of HJ, still packs a punch. It is pleasent and delights. With 2 chart busters, this album should mark another success for HJ.