In these times of exorbitant budgets and mammoth opening weekend collections, it’s vital for a big-ticket release to have a sparkling soundtrack. After all, music does play a significant part in drawing the crowds to the cinemas.
This factor takes on gargantuan proportions, when the film in question is RA.One, the most expensive movie ever made in India. Then it’s imperative that the songs click in a big way to get the audience excited before the release. The onus of composing for this sci-fi thriller rests with the talented duo Vishal & Shekar (VS) and they have created seven original tunes, three instrumental pieces and five remixes for this album.
There is no stopping Chammak Challo (Akon, Hamsika Iyer) from becoming an instant anthem! A heady mix of Middle-Eastern and mainstream Bollywood sounds, this dance number has a rhythm that’s super-infectious. International R&B artiste Akon is a charismatic singer and surprises with his Hindi diction while Hamsika Iyer makes a dazzling impact in her Tamil and Hindi portions. VS have delivered a monster track that will have the nation grooving for some time!
VS take Ben E King’s legendary Stand By Me (legally purchased, thankfully) and give it a desi twist in Dildaara, beautifully fusing bits of Indian classical with the English chorus. The highlight, no doubt, is Shafqat Amanat Ali, who infuses the right emotions to his singing and makes a solid mark. Dildaara is a delightful listen.
If Chammak Challo wasn’t enough, Akon makes a return with another rousing dance track, Criminal. The composers mix electronic with Punjabi Bhangra to create yet another foot-tapping and immensely enjoyable number.
Nandini Srikar is the find of the season – what a compelling voice! Between the fun tracks, VS compose a haunting classical-meets-rock ballad, Bhare Naina, which is the surprise package of this album. Nandini, the voice behind several jingles, delivers this complex melody with aplomb. Bhare Naina is a class act by VS. Right By Your Side (Sid Coutto) is peppy but affectedly sweet. It also suffers from a serious Jaane Kyun (Dostana) hangover.
Raftaarein (Vishal, Shekar) is an electrifying tribute to R D Burman. Vishal & Shekar get behind the mic in this sensational homage to the late maestro of Bollywood music. This fast-paced juggernaut of a number will blow your mind, especially if you have been an RDB fan. In Jiya Mora Ghabraaye – The Chase, VS play with various genres to produce a Chemical Brothers-ish, high-octane background number. And the three thematic music pieces succeed in conveying the larger-than-life feel of the movie effectively.
With RA One, composers Vishal & Shekar have delivered a blockbuster album.
Verdict: Massively entertaining!