If you don’t know it by now, I am the mendicant who is always on a lookout for music and I must say, thanks to twitter, I have had great success in getting some great music over the years. A lot of it happens to be non-hindi as well. Katyar Kalijat Ghusali is different. I was told about this film by a co-worker who plays super tabla. Going to work has finally made sense!
Getting down to the music of the film, Divya kumar, Arshad Mahmud, Arijit singh and back up vocals participate in Yaar Illahi which is a qawwali. You cannot change how a qawwali is done but even then thanks to the first-rate lyrics by Sameer samant and solid tonal treatment, the qawwali doesn’t weigh you down. The opening chants in Sur Niragas ho are so well done that you would want to give out a grand salute to the backup vocalists. A layered marathi devotional song, this one has Shankar Mahadevan and Anandi Joshi at the top of their game. The super super super talented Rahul Deshpande teams up with a fluid Sarangi to arrest our senses in Dil ki tapish. Right from the opening alaap, the way Sarangi accompanies Rahul is heavenly. I would surely like to know who has played the Sarangi. ‘Spectacular’ is the word for Mahesh kale’s Aruni Kirani and the Sitar in the song has a character of its own in the song along with a very ‘by the beat’ Tabla. It transported me to a big hall where I was sitting in a corner marvelling at an artist who had the entire attendance spellbound. Shankar Ehsan Loy have so much left in them, I wonder why they haven’t been giving such a durable treatment to their hindi projects off late?
In Bhola Bhandari, Arijit Singh has given us a song that sounds familiar and earthy, setting wise. Arijit is real and not trying too hard and that is always good. Composed by Late Pt. Jitendra Abhisheki, Shankar mahadevan’s Din Gele sounds vintage thanks to the Long play disc ‘bite’ sound in the song. Ghei chhand, sung neatly and with a lot of character by Shankar mahadevan and Ghei Chhand Makarand sung breezily by Rahul Deshpande are also composed by Late Pt. Jitendra Abhisheki. Both these songs are a treat to the senses. The richly ornamented theme is simple and while the humming was a bit contemporary for me (almost AR Rahman-sque), the theme is soothing and leaves you with a sense of calm amidst the echoes of friendly instruments in a way only Indian classical music can. In what is Pandit ji’s old and extremely popular composition, you will realise the beauty of moderate instruments and pakki gayaki. I am talking about ‘Lagi kalejwa kataar’ in Pt. Jitendra Abhisheki’s velvet voice. It was a task to move to other songs, trust me on that.
We know how infinitely gifted Shankar Mahadevan is. In Man Mandira, Shankar Mahadevan makes it sound easy to the point of deception. Deception because you can be easily tricked into singing along with him only to realise your limitations. Structure wise, I just loved the song. That said, Shivam Mahadevan’s Man Mandira will give you goosebumps right from the first second of the song. The innocent voice (which is not a note off, mind you) dazzles the senses to put it mildly. The slight harkat in his Mandiraaa at about 1:53 mins in the song is assuring that we have yet another voice that knows pakki gayaki. What a relief!
Muralidhar shyam sung by Shankar Mahadevan is a short piece but quite addictive and the ‘bite’ sound makes you long for it more. Rahul Deshpande’s Sur se saji is clean, grand and quite nicely penned by Sameer Samant and Prakash Kapadia. Surat Piya ki is yet again a piece that is grand in character and a riot melody wise. The variations presented by Rahul Deshpande & Mahesh kale will give you a high no LSD can ever provide, trust me on that. Tarana is short yet quite effective because of the gifted backup vocalists. Tojonidhi Lohagol by Shankar Mahadevan opens with a signature alaap by Shankar Mahadevan. The composition and singing is top class especially the short appearances by Sitar.
An out and out winner of an album with not a single second that is wasted on silly theatrics to sound grand. Don’t worry if you don’t understand the language, the excellent music setting of the album will not let you notice the linguistic limitations. I still cannot believe that such a rich album has come out in 2015. I cannot write enough words of appreciation for the makers for showcasing to us Pandit Jitendra Abhisheki. Somehow, all the artists who have built melodious legacies remain popular within their niche set of followers. I hope at least one listener who wasn’t aware of Pt. Jitendra Abhisheki earlier digs deeper and uncovers the gems he has left for all of us, and then passes them along to one more listener and so on. Nothing can be more exciting than to see our legendary artists being showcased again and again and that too for a wider audience. No praise can be enough for the entire band of technicians who have made this album possible. Sameer Samant, Mangesh Kangane, Mandar Cholkar, Shankar-Ehsan-Loy, take a bow. The sound piques your senses to find out more about the film and oozes melody. I cannot ask anything more from an O.S.T.
The film revolves around musical rivalry in the court of a king. It is playing with english subtitles in Mumbai. I know i am watching it. Are you?