Saturday, 8 October 2011

Ra.One Soundtrack Review

Never has a soundtrack suffered from so much hype and high expectations. First there were the leaks, then the attempted live broadcast of the launch on you tube. Artists include internationally known Akon and the Prague Philharmonic. It was also composed by Vishal-Shekar, a duo known for hits such as Om Shanti Om and Bachna Ae Haseeno. Surely Ra.One has to has to be an instant hit?

I will admit that I am still sceptical and cynical about the leak. If the early unofficial release was not backed by the producers composers and singers, why would respected radio stations be playing it? I cannot believe that radio stations are allowed to legally broadcast what was essentially an illegal download. 

At least the mole picked the right song to leak and thanks to him or her we have all heard Chammak Challo. It is a mix of styles, beats and genres. Catchy and multilingual, this is going to be played all around the world for a long time. Akon’s pronounciation is impressive, but it does not strike me as an Akon song. Chammak is a great song, and it think it would have worked even if a lesser known artist was providing the vocals instead of Akon. Akon’s voice is used to better effect in Criminal. He sounds much more like himself. Akon sings in Hindi again, but leaves most of the Hindi to Vishal Dadlani.

There are 15 songs on the album, three of which are instrumental themes. There are no less than five versions of Chammak Challo. Even if you love the song, this is a little too much. In my opinion none of the remixes are as good as the original.

Chammak Challo dominates this soundtrack, but the other songs are worth listening to. Dildara is a nice song. It’s romantic without being too slushy. The inclusion of Stand By Me works, but I would have like the whole song to have been original. Right By Your Side is a fun catchy pop track and Raftaarein has a great feel to it.

Bharein Naina
is another nice song, but suffers an identity crisis. Bonus points for getting the Prague Philharmonic Choir to sing on this track, but all the elements don’t quite gel together. In places I feel like I am listening to two different songs. It’s a shame, as in places it could have been an amazing song, but doesn’t quite get there.

Jiya Mora Ghabaarye has a futuristic feel to it. This ties in with the theme of the film and I thought there would have been more songs like this. It reminds me of Prodigy’s Omen as it has the same dark tone to it. Sukhwinder Singh performs admirably out of his comfort zone, but his voice is lost among the heavy beats.

Verdict: There are some gems on this soundtrack, but they feel like an afterthought on an album that is all about the catchy Chammak Challo. It is a good album, it's just not as great as the hype suggested it would be.

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