Archive for the ‘Music Reviews’ Category

Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaaya – Music for love to feed on!

Being Rahman’s first Tamil album after Oscar and the long awaited Gautham-Rahman album, Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaaya has raised the expectation levels amidst music lovers of all sorts. And now, the sound track consists of 7 numbers, uniquely different from each other, and Thamarai’s immaculate lines continue to shine.

Male Harmony:Benny Dayal, Devan Ekambaram, Karthik, Vijay Prakash, Naresh Iyer,  A.R.Rahman , Alphonse Joseph and  Blaaze,

Female harmony:Kalyani Menon, Chinmayi, Suzanne D’ Mello and Shreya Ghoshal

Lyrics:Thamarai, Kaithapram, Kalyani Menon and Blaaze

1. Aaromale*****

Singer: Alphonse Joseph

Lyrics: Kaithapram

A soft but powerful malayalam rock song which Reminds us of the late 80’s English rock stars and recent mallu rock albums like Aviyal and Thaalam. Alphonse’s vocals take us high when unleashed to the max. And about the tune, it’s one of those Rahman melodies which will haunt your music buds for a long time. The entrancing use of the guitar and the mellifluous chorus will turn your speakers in to a midnight’s stage and your room in to an open auditorium!

2.Omana Penne*****

Singers: Benny Dayal, Kalyani Menon

Lyrics: Thamarai, Kalyani Menon(Malayalam lines)

To be simple, this song is a scoop of vanilla ice-cream with a cherry on top! The composer’s imagination takes you for a magical mystery tour when the Nadaswaram piece begins in the background. Benny Dayal’s already feminine style of singing and the use of synthesiser makes him a flawless instrument competing with the Nadaswaram. And the sparingly used Kalyani Menon’s part in musical Malayalam is the cherry on top. If a master chef like Rahman tries a new dish with Tamil, Malayalam and a few table spoons full of quality music, it shall be called Omana Penne!


Singers: A.R.Rahman, Shreya Ghoshal

Lyrics: Thamarai

As the name suggests this is a sorry song which will never make you feel sorry for listening to it. Once again the age old saying that the best of melodies are born in the saddest of situation, proves to be true. Evidently this song is a descendant of Kathale from Duet, Uyire from Bombay, Oru Poiyavathu from Jodi and Aaruyire from Guru. Shreya Ghoshal’s voice is as sweet as a melting chocolate and Rahman hits us with his voice of a lover in sad plight.The christian choir like rendering of a few kurals at the latter end of this song blends two apparently dissimilar things and is very different from that of the Kural song we listened to in Connexions. A song close to the heart of love and everlasting lovers!

4.Anbil Avan*****

SIngers: Devan Ekambaram, Chinmayi

Lyrics: Thamarai

This is a marriage song which asks us to choose love. Here we see a blend of Hindu and Christian musical elements. Also the music sensibility of this song reminds us the golden times of MSV. Devan who is back to Rahman’s camp after a long time is more mature in his timbre and Chinmayi’s versatile vocals aptly fit this amorous tune. As Rahman said earlier, this song is a mix of two cultures. The use of Mridangam Nadaswaram and Church Organ along with synthesised chorus creates the needed atmosphere!

5. Hosanna*****

Singers: Vijay Prakash, Blaaze, Suzanne D’Mello

Lyrics: Thamarai, Blaaze (Rap)

‘A breezy hip-hop song with an intoxicating orchestration’ would be the perfect definition of Hosanna. This song is like that beautiful city of our dreams where we will never find our way out. Turns and twists with a touch of pathos can do magic and that’s what Hosanna does. Once again Rahman establishes that for a song to be effective, technology should be used cautiously. Vijay Prakash’s definite voice takes control of the whole song to the last word, where as Suzanne’s voice supports the lead neatly from the background. The rhythm of this song bears close similarity to Tu Muskura from Yuvvraj.  And in between, Blazee’s rap comes in like a flash and takes us off in style. And Thamarai’s lyrics for this song is the best of the album. Save me, I beseech you! hails this lover with Hosanna!

6.Vinnaithaandi Varuvaya****

Singer: Karthik

Lyrics: Thamarai

Here what we have is an acoustic song with a lot of emotions packed into it. Karthik is as alive and kicking as usual and as anytime before. The tune is fresh and takes some time to grow into you. Being the title track, this number sets the tone of the film. Must be seen with visuals to be appreciated completely. And we can see boys singing this around the city with a guitar in a few months time. A song dedicated to the moon lovers!

7.Kannukkul Kannai****

Singer: Naresh Iyer

Lyrics: Thamarai

A fast paced pop-rock number packed with a lot of techno elements. Rahman’s favourite singer Naresh Iyer drives it home in full throated ease. Apart from a strong resemblance to a couple of songs from Rahman’s latest Hindi album Blue, this number reminds us of Maramkothiye from Anbe Aaruyire. The violin sound which peeps in continuously is a pleasure to listen. At last a song for Discotheque lovers and dance lovers. This song raises our curiosity to see Simbu dance to its tune. Thamarai’s lyrics cleverly portray the mind of a young man trying to win the heart of his lady love without being too cliched.

Though the wait for the album was frustrating, Rahman dispatches tunes which are worth the wait and has tried to do something different and that which he hasn’t done before. Though something in the lines of Minsara kanavu, Indian and Alaipayuthey would have guaranteed him a winner, he steps on to a different plane in Vinnai thaandi Varuvaayaa. And the tunes mean business and not of the syrupy stuff. So Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaaya is an album showcasing different images of love!

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Nandhalala – Album of lullabies!
nandhalala_1024_030708 Ilayaraaja joins hands with the ‘fearless director’ Mysskin for Nandhalala. All the five lyricists have wrapped up highly aesthetic words for this film. As this film is about the quest of a mentally retarded fellow and a kid, the songs are pleasant, positive and poignant.

Male Harmony

Ilayaraja,  K.J.Jesudas, Master Yatheeshwaran, Vijay Yesudas, Madhu Balakrishnan

Female Harmony

Swetha, Saroja amma

1. Mella oorndhu oorndhu****

Singer: Ilayaraja

Lyrics: Na.Muthukumar

A beautiful Ilayaraja number with child sensibility. Sounds like ‘Maina kunju’ and ‘Vandhaal Vandhaal’.This song evinces Ilayaraja’s inimitable Orchestration and instrumentation talents for which he is known for. The piano interludes and chorus adds on to the school rhyme effect of this serenade. Muthukumar has penned a riddle like ‘who am I?’ lyrics with Nietzsche overtones for this song and successfully keeps us guessing till the very end. Another song to the ‘anjali’ genre!

2. Onnukkonnu*****

Singer:  K.J Jesudas

Lyrics: Mu.Mehtha
Only in a very few songs tune, rhythm, voice, instruments and lyrics sweetly fall in place as in a cup of fruit salad with ice cream. Mehtha’s flawless lines explicates the soul of the film. Simple tune and sparingly used equipment make this song another feather in Ilayaraja’s crown. For Jesudoss, this song is Kanne Kalaimane part2. Another Ilayaraja classic for the dark and warm evenings. Right song for this sick world!


Singer: Ilayaraja

Lyrics: Muthulingam
Typical Ilayaraja’s Amma song. Begins like ‘Thenpandi seemaiyile’ and proceeds like ‘Aalolam paadi’.Full of native instruments and customary lyrics. Mesmerising Ilayaraja’s voice breaks down once a while portraying the powerful feel of the song. An ordinary song with a maestro’s finish.

4. Kai veesi*****

Singers: Vijay Yesudas, Swetha, Madhu Balakrishnan

Lyrics: Pazhanibharathy
An awesome melody, celebrating life, rooted in hardcore Ilayarajaism. Reminds us of ‘Ilangaathu veesuthe’. The flute piece which runs along this number is memorable. Though not innovative interms of instrumentation, the wondrous tune tells it all. Once again a number with ‘anjali’ feel- collective joie de vivre.


Singer: Saroja Amma
A gypsy song with a voice and an instrument. The language is  a strange conglomerate of many Indian languages. Though gives us a sick feeling, the rising tempo vividly showcases the meaning of the song. Mysskin’s attempt to do something fresh and original is clearly seen in here.

6.oru vaandu koottame****

Singers: Ilayaraja, Master Yatheeshwaran

Lyrics: Kabilan
A colorful number with a pot-pourri of voices and instruments. Master Yatheeswharan’s voice alternates beautifully with Ilayaraja’s. Must be a road song with fun all along. The tune is native but grand.The violin interlude of this song will haunt you for a long time even in your fantasies. Since this film is about children and from a child’s point of view, Ilayaraja’s numbers for this film remind us of the film ‘anjali’.

Neither with rap nor hip-hop, Ilayaraja scores a triple ton in Nandhalala. Mysskin is adorable for requesting all the songs in pure tamil. It is all about mother and love!

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Ghajini – Music Review


For the Memento inspired Ghajini, ARR has etched out 6 songs, one being an instrumental. Definitely a decent piece of work, but with a slight deviation from a Rahman album. Every song of this album is an experiment with a subtly interpolated ARR aroma.

Male Harmony

Benny Dayal, Javed Ali, Sonu Nigam, Karthik

Female Harmony

Shreya Ghoshal and Suzanne


Prasoon Joshi

1. Behka****

Singers: Karthik

Within the first 2 minutes, we find Pop, Rock and Jazz elements being fused into this mystery toned song. Lot of innovations have been done on the vocal side (Watch out for the tongue twisters and rollers) Karthik’s experienced voice sinks in perfect equilibrium with the tone, Instrumentation and the tempo of the song. Behka is a Risky melodic experiment by ARR

2. Latoo***

Singers: Shreya Ghoshal

This party song is pitched somewhere in between the western Pop and peppy Indian music and nothing extraordinary about this song, but still ARR lives in the chorus, interludes and drum rolls. Though a quick paced song, Shreya Ghosal gives a melodic touch to this number. May be a visual song fitting the dance choreography and setting. Chiselled to haunt the pubs and discotheques for a while.

3. Guzarish*****

Singes: Javed Ali, Sonu Nigam

A classic Rahman melody, full of sitar interludes. Once again, a piping hot tune from Rahman Bhai’s kitchen. If you are in love, sun or rain, this must be your latest anthem. Awesome voice renderings by Javed Ali and Sonu Nigam. Will rock the theatres for sure. Since melancholy is one of the major themes of the film, there is an interwoven thread of blues. Take heed to it properly to fall in love with it. Play the song, open the window of your room and heart and start melting.

4. Aye Bachchu***

Singes: Suzanne

A rock song, with a streak of a melody running through it. Instrumentation and orchestration along with the muffled refrain, elevates this song to the next level. A pocket sized dynamite but potent enough to cause ample catastrophe. Suzanne’s voice and Prasoon Joshi’s ‘take it easy’ lyrics make sure that this song captures the attention of the audience.

5. Kaise Mujhe****

Singers: Benny Dayal, Shrey Ghoshal

Again a lugubrious love song, with a good deal of pitch variations. Rahman has tried to handle Indian instruments in a western way. Benny’s laid-back harmony blends absolutely with Shreya Ghoshal’s mellifluous voice. These elements adorn this song to suit a lovely-dovey song. The instrumental version of this song is good too! This track seems to be main theme of the album.

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Vaaranam Aayiram – Musical Rainbow!

Gautham Menon and his melodius accomplice Harris Jeyaraj come together once again for Vaaranam Ayiram. After getting hold of the rights, to popularise the songs Sony BMG has given a few songs to the FM stations five days prior to the actual audio release. Harris Jeyaraj has composed seven different numbers for this film. Let us look at them more closely.

Male Harmony: Krish, Benny Dayal,  Hariharan, Karthik, Naresh Iyer, SPB Charan, Devan, V.Prasanna, Clinton, Solar Sai

Female Harmony: Shruti Hassan, Prashanthini, Sudha Ragunathan

1. Adiye Kolluthey****
Singers: Krish, Benny Dayal, Shruti Hassan

A small sticker on the cd cover says “Including the smash hit Adiye Kolluthe”. Basically a rock number built on Thamarai’s enthusing lyrics. Shruti Hassan’s stylistic voice aptly fit into this western song. Benny and Krish sing wondrously to give the music instruments an arduous time. As usual, full of strange haunting chants and guitar interludes. Though the rhythm gives us a ‘heard it somewhere’ feeling, the increasing tempo compensates it. Probably this song is Gautham Menon’s personal favourite. Fit to be a hi… oops! its already a smash hit. On the whole, this number is a “thrilling sweetheart!”

2. Nenjukkul Peidhidum****
Singers: Hariharan, Devan, V.Prasanna

This song hails Hariharan as the divine lord of melodies! Thamarai’s lyrics for this song will be among the best ever made in this decade. Multitudes of chorus are used in this song by harris. With a limited number of instruments, this number creates the maximum effect. A cool song to depict the burning passions of the lover. The guitar pieces which run through the song hits it  for a home run. Another awesome melody in Harris Jeyaraj collection. “Romance Romance and Romance for all days of the year”.

3.Yethi Yethi***
Singers: Benny Dayal, Naresh Iyer, Solar Sai

A song from the Hip-Hop tradition. The ‘Sokkuthe Manam’ TV show star Solar Sai sings along with Benny and Naresh in this number. This song reminds us a lot of other numbers such as ‘Ada gada’ from sathyam, ‘Taxi taxi’ from ‘sakkarakkatti’ and at times ‘Adhiradikkaran’ from ‘Sivaji’. With a whistling opening, Muthukumar’s’s lyrics bringout the pure life of the dirty college students. The acoustic guitar interludes of this song gives us ‘the Ilayaraja effect’. Pretty ordinary song when compared to the earlier two. But still, rejoice with this when a few good friends are around.

Singers: Naresh Iyer, Prashanthini

A pleasant soft rock number packed in with a variety of interludes{Sax, mouth organ, drums}. Though justly used, the drum beats grab our attention. Once again Thamarai’s lyrics claims commendation. At times Naresh Iyer’s voice ‘unsexes’ itself to blend with Prashanthini’s voice which contributes to the soft ‘feminine touch’ of this song. With a variety of instruments Harris Jeyaraj has orchestrated this melody to perfection. ‘Rock’ seems to be the core genre of this album.

5.Oh! Shanthi! Shanthi***
Clinton, SPB Charan
Clinton is back with a bang in this little, soft rock number. Sounds like a softer version of  ‘Mudhal naal indru’. Clinton’s the ‘Oh Shanthi’ refrain boosts up the energy level of this song. However the ordinary rhythm of this song makes us to associate a lot of earlier songs of Harris Jeyaraj. Might turn out to be an awesome background theme and ‘sing along’, if used suitably. “laali laali laali!”

6.Ava Enna***
Singers: Karthik, V.Prasanna

A soft kuthu song decorated with flowers of melancholy. Reminds us ‘Siva siva siva sankara’ from ‘Suyamvaram’ and ‘Appa amma’ from ‘Dreams’. Heretoo Harris finds a little room for his guitar.  Thamarai’s ordinary words are shouldered well by Karthik’s versatile voice and stupendous pronunciation. Though no scope for novelty, Harris has peppered this song with gentle choruses and bass beats.

7.Anul Mele****
Singers: Sudha ragunathan

A song from the Indian Classical music world. Sudha Ragunathan’s genius breaths eternal life into  this song and makes it good. Certain areas of this song resemble ‘Enadhuyire’ from ‘Bheema’. This sounds like an ‘Ilayaraja melody’ too. Will become the favourite of classical music listeners. Finally in this song Harris has accomodated his favourite: Vilolin along with Veena. Seems to convey a particular situation of the plot. Since 90% of the songs are in purely pronounced and unadulterated Tamil, ‘Vaaranam Aayiram’ receives special applause!.


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Sathyam- An eclectic musical treat!

Album name: Sathyam

Release date: 20.07.08

Music Director: Harris Jeyaraj

Number of Tracks: 5
Male harmony:
Hariharan, Premji, Naveen, Benny Dayal,
Female harmony:
Bombay Jeyashree, Sadhana Sargam, Mahathi, Sunitha Sarathy

After Dhaam Dhoom, Harris is back with his five classy decent songs for Sathyam. Being accused for repeated usage of beats in Bheema, harris has tried to evolve himself out of his old styles and come up with music anew.

1. Ivan udaiyum (Aaradi Kaathe)***
Singer: HariHaran
A hero worship song as well as an introduction number for another police officer. This song comes in the tradition of ‘Karka Karka’ from ‘vettaiyadu Vilaiyadu’ and ‘Oru mugamo’ from ‘Bheema’. At the beginning of this number we don’t hear many instruments save the rhythm beat. But when once the song crosses its crisis, many instruments join hands. particularly the traditional Kerala instruments and drum rolls in the second half add more spice. Hariharan establishes the supremacy of the hero very casually with his
melodic voice, Amazing! But the tune appears cliched and makes us feel, ‘after all another hero worship song’. The lyricist has tried his level best to do what the director has asked him to. Totally, this song gives us a ‘Trance effect’. May produce great results while being watched in the theatres. A wonderful song for rough and tough visualisation.

2. Ada gada****
Singer: Premji Amaran
A peppy rap song with a comic touch. The song opens with a mind blowing ‘shababarababambam’ which becomes a refrain of this song. This song is full of special effects(The echoing effects, distorted old sounds) and haunted by western instruments. May become the favourite number of youth and kids. Premji’s voice is so much in line with the music that it sounds like another instrument! Howsoever at the simplest level, the song has a very good melody, which reminds us Ilayaraja’s 80s. At times this song gives us the feel of Pudhu pudhu from Dhaam Dhoom and adhiradikkaran from Sivaji. The lyrics which are fabulously written in ‘Tanglish’ are funny and interesting!(Nee pazhaiya kaalathu lu(oo)na!). At the end of the story, a jolly good song, which we may listen to in repeat mode!

3. Chellame****
Singers: Bombay Jeyashree, Balram, Sunitha Sarathi
A Harris hallmark, in the traits of vaseegara from minnale, Unakkul Naane from PKMC and Saghiye from Dhaam Dhoom. Erotic as usual. Bombay jeyashree’s voice is a sweet poison which puts us in a heavenly trance. Once again the tune is a bit old and may not be cherished by a particular sect of
music connoisseurs( It reminds us ‘Idhu kaadhal kaadhal’ song). Among the instruments Violin and drums dominate. We could hear Harris’s musical talents unrolling with his perfect choice of instruments(Drums, violin, piano, flute and what not in this song?!) The strange chant which comes in the middle and ends with ‘vetkam vetkam’ ‘Nitham Nitham’ is excellent. This is a perfect song with romantic lyrics suitable for listening on a rainy day’s night after turning our lights off!

4. En anbe****
Singers: Sadhana Sargam, Benny Dayal
A heroine solo song. Takes a soft middle stand between Indian classical music and western music. A soft number with a ‘Iyengaaru veettu’ touch(but the tune is completely different). Similar to Chellame the Instrumental accompaniment is out of the ordinary. Sadhana Sargam sings our brains out! The chorus does a great job too. The sarod-tabla interlude of this song is notable. The lines and the music go hand in hand with each other. The unrecognised voices heard in the later half of the song takes us to a mystic wonderland. The tune of this pianissimotic number reminds us a few old songs. But not a bad song at all. Romance and romance all over again!

5. Paal Pappali***
Singers: Naveen Madhav, Mahathi
A kuthu song for the commercial fans. This song introduces itself with the indomitable ‘saavu melam’, but definitely not of the dirty ‘Srikanth Deva’ genre. The essence of this song is similar to jaari singaari from Thotti Jeya. There are a lot of speaking silences (or pauses) in this song which make it
different. This is a folkish ghaana song like ‘suppamma’ from ‘Rojakootam’. Heretoo we find violin pieces strewn here and there which increase the quality of this ordinary song. Both the singers add life to the native lyrics which takes us to a village-fest. “Style, class and elegance” seem to be the livewire of this album.


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Sakkarakatti- Electrifying youth vibrancy!

Album name : Sakkarakatti
Release date : 11.7.08
Music Director : ARRahman
Number of Tracks : 6

Male harmony

Benny Dayal, Blaaze, ,Javed Ali, A R Rahman, Henry, Krish and Naresh Iyer

Female harmony

Chinmayi, Madhushree, Viviane Chaix and Indai Haza

The long awaited soundtrack of the movie Sakkarakatti has hit the stores yesterday. Rahman has scored half a dozen bright and colorful songs for this ‘Shanthanu’ starrer.

1. Taxi Taxi*****
Singers: Benny Dayal, Blaaze, Viviane Chaix and Javed Ali
Lyrics: Blaaze, Na Muthukumar, Viviane Chaix
Basically a friendship song like Mustafa, full of Blaaze’s Rap interludes, Vivian’s ooh laas and french chants. The rhythm of this song is pretty ordinary but the vocals and other additions take it to the next level. This song gives us the feel of a ‘Bollywood’ number. Lyrics bringout this ‘ipod’ age’s friends and their relationships with a bit of slapstick humour. Pals dont miss this!

2. Marudhani****
Singers: Madhushree, A R Rahman, Henry
Lyrics  : Vaali
Probably a heroine solo melody, with soft beats and chorus. Pleasant interludes and Rahman’s hummings complete this soft but quick number. This is the only song which contains ARR’s voice in this album. Dynamic Vaali’s lyrics are spoiled by Madhushree’s poor Tamil accent. So a kind request to Madhushree:’Please find a good tamil teacher before commiting your next Tamil song’.

3. I Miss You Da*****

Singers: Chinmayi, Indai Haza
Lyrics  : Na Muthukumar
Another solo female song in which ARR has experimented with converting different ordinary sounds into one sweet melody. Appears to be a fusion of pop music and dubstep genre. Chinmayi’s versatile voice realises ARR’s dream. Also the song progresses with ‘Adhiradikkaran’ kind of beats now and then. The chorus and beats are avant-garde. May demand a lot of listening before you love it. Muthukumar’s lyrics are very ordinary and fails to impress. The feel produced by this song is similar to the effect produced by ‘Maja Maja'(SOK) and ‘Kettena'(Desam). A song for the world!

Singers: Benny Dayal, Chinmayi
Lyrics  : Pa Vijay
A Tamil version of the song ‘Chinnamma Chilakkamma’ from Rahman’s soundtrack for the Hindi movie Meenaxi(2004). Though a repetitive seranade from ARR, not disappointing. Benny sings very similar to Sukhwinder, the singer of the original Chinnamma. But Benny beats Sukhwinder with his proper Tamil pronounciation. We could hear Sukhwinder’s humming at the end point of this song!. Benny’s adaptable voice eeks out his best at the high pitch areas. Chinmayi in this song sounds very different from ‘I miss you da’. Both the singers have given their maximum effort in this song. Pa Vijay’s lyrics have perfectly fit this Andhra folk song. The song begins like an old Telugu song played in an old philips radio. Fantastic! One of ARR’s best folk numbers. The Andhra feel reminds us ‘Errani Kurrani'(Kadhalan) song. With the usage of folk instruments and a few western equipment Rahman has challenged the kuthu song world!


Singers: Krish ,Naresh Iyer
Lyrics  : Na Muthukumar
Seems to be the ‘soul’ song of this movie. Full of guitar sounds, violin pieces and quick beats. Though the music is of the Rock genre, the lyrics and violin gives us ‘at home’ feeling. A positive and pleasant song which bridges east and west. Though a number of instruments are used, nothing goes haywire. Wonderful orchestration and coordination by ARR. In this song Muthukumar gains what he lost in ‘I Miss you da’ song. The song ends by providing us a jazz feel. Krish and Naresh sing exactly with the feel of south Indian boys. At times this song reminds us ‘Roobaaroo'(Rang De Basanti). But the utilisation of other instruments makes this song different.

6.Naan Epodhu****
Singers: Reena Bharadwaj
Lyrics  : Pa Vijay
Another reiteration from Meenaxi. The Same singer is called back. A wonderful North Indian style song, with a lovely tune and guitar interludes. Beautiful addition of effects at right times. Right choice of voice. Totally an awesome song. But, this awesome song is stained by the awkward pronounciation(Pen or pin??!!) of the singer. This is the third female solo song of this album and the shortest one. Pa Vijay’s romantic lyrics along with excellent instrumentation doesn’t fail to create the intended swooning effect. A sweet song!


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