Thursday, October 12, 2017

Music Review (Updated) - 2017

To make music reviews more noticeable and easy to navigate each review, thought will classify each review as follows based on the rating in my blog
BA - less than 7 (Below Average Album)
A - less than 8 (Average Album)
AA - less than 9 (Above Average Album)
E - 9 and above (Excellent Album)

Music Review (Tamil): Ippadai Vellum

Music Review (Tamil): Ippadai Vellum
Music Composer: Imman

Imman provides the optimistic positive attitude title song for Shreya Goshal and the lady aces it perfectly with minor hiccup during the arousing chorus sections. However, Imman beautifully crafts the background, with the standout Nathan's woodwinds and Saxophone work. Arunraja Kamaraj shines with his aspirational lyrics for this title song. Aadharaa's fangled rendition of Arunraja Kamaraj's verses aside, Godfather Kanmaniye is predictable with very less awe or influencing element in the track. The tune also fails to evoke interest except for the occasional brilliance in the form of Raghavasimhan's solo violin.

Thodra Paakalam verses are tailor-made for Arunraja Kamaraj's vocals but Imman's vocals also work adequately for the pedestrianly composed tune by the composer. Keba Jeremiah's guitar and punchy percussions go well with the energy in the verses but the tune hardly sticks to the listener's mind. The tune reminds some of the Imman's earlier days compositions. Kulebaa Vaa rides mainly on the adequately engaging Kaviraj's Arabian Rhythm and the tune standalone doesn't make quite a cut but still, the overseas singers Kumaresh Kamalakannan and Nalini Krishnan make this one a listenable track till it lasts. One wishes Imman could have done a more imaginative track with this rhythm sound.The theme track is the tweaked upbeat version of the title song with a few intriguing sounds added to get the thrilling effect but makes the lesser impact mainly because of the vocal portions.

Verdict: Imman continues to be pigeonholed with his stock sounds and Ippadai Vellum is not an outlier either.

My Rating:6.5/10

Pick of the Album: Ippadai Vellum Nichayame, Kulebaa Vaa

P.S You can listen to the songs in Saavn.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Music Review (Tamil/Malayalam) : Solo

Music Review (Tamil/Malayalam) : Solo
Music Composer: Assorted Composers

Roshomon's buoyant and lively tune has the Russian folk music flavour and Alok Kulkarni's jaunty guitar is undeniably star of the song. The underlying programming by Sreerag Saji brings out the accordion sounds quite effectually. Overall, Prashant Pillai opens this multi-composer soundtrack with a highly infectious stunning track crooned by the string of singers led by Ashwin Gopakumar. Filter coffee selects Jog Raag based classical song Sajan More Ghar Aaye and builds the fantastic atmosphere around it with Swarupa Ananth's brilliant Konnakol and Jhanvi Srimankar's splendid rendition. The unconventional musical structure accompanied by Govind's solo violin cues make this one an engaging song till it lasts. Sooraj S Kurup of Valleem Thetti Pulleem Thetti fame delivers the song of the soundtrack in this multi-composer soundtrack. The classical song crooned in a splendid manner by Renuka Arun after Endaro in Telugu and she aces the classical rendition brilliantly. Hope composers utilize her vocals frequently. Sooraj's minimal sounds in the background accentuate the reverberating vocals.

World of Siva opens up with Masala Coffee's Aal Ayaal and the track is synchronous with the band's signature sounds rooted in Malayalam folk. Sooraj Santosh aces the vocals part as usual while adorning the track with magnificent arrangements topped by Krishnaraj's violin and awesome bass guitar work by Paul Joseph. The song's reprise version is done in a more stylish manner with much emphasis on Preeth P S's guitar strums and Sooraj's vocals. Thaikkudam Bridge reproduced the famous Aigiri Nandini and gave the haunting treatment to the track and the Govind's gloomy rendition and vocal texture gel perfectly with the arrangements. The arrangements turned towards the expected rock genre but the violin and guitar solos make this one easily works despite the overall familiar sound. The track has predominantly the sound of Thaikkudam bridge's latest brilliant album Navarasam. Govind presents his another adapted classical track Shiv Taandav composed by Raghini Bhagwat and the energetic arrangements sung in an effectual manner by Saylee Talwalkar works seamlessly. The drums rhythm and the singer's vocals amalgamate well and make this one wonderful listen.

Madras Kuthu meets the rap in Singa Kutty in the track composed by Sez on the beat. Though the track is less intriguing compared to other tracks in the album, Chinna Ponnu's vocals and Balasubramani's Nadhaswaram keeps the song afloat amidst other sounds.Thoovanam is the conventional mainstream sound in the album composed by Abhinav Bansal and the tune is a cakewalk for Vijay Yesudas. The tune didn't work for me except for the brilliance of the lead singer. Harish Sivaramakrishnan effectually recreated their hit boat song and the pulsating rock fusion easily works and the thittithara is the highlight in this highly effectual song while Agam brilliantly infuses the serene version of boat song in Uyiraagi especially the way Thittithara is incorporated. Shashaa Tripathi gives life to the song with her mellifluous vocals.

Separation is led by Ashitha Ajit's brilliant vocals and Gaurav Godkindi's serene arrangements topped by solo violin intermittently.Karaiyaadhe is another sing-along soft rock song crooned by Siddharth Basrur splendidly. The arrangements are dominated by typical English pop sound but work beautifully till it lasts. You is an English version of Karaiyaadhe and Siddharth owns the song with his pitch-perfect vocals.

Verdict: Extraordinary soundtrack for an anthology film and Bejoy Nambiar extracted another brilliant album from the multiple composers after David.

My Rating:9/10

Pick of the Album: Just listen to the whole Album and you won't regret.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Music Review (Tamil): Nenjil Thunivirunthal

Music Review (Tamil): Nenjil Thunivirunthal
Music Composer: Imman

Yechacha Yechacha  starts with famous Muthu dialogue which has been added solely to justify the title but soon spiral towards typical Imman tune which usually composer reserve for himself but handed over to Jithin Raj in this track. The track has the busy arrangements in the background but nothing sticks out except for the enticing usage of trumpets in the second interlude amidst the gibberish sounds. The mild awkward imitation of rail sound aside, Rail Aaraaro is a neat listen dominated by guitar-laden arrangements and brilliant singing by Shreya Goshal along with current favorite Pradeep Kumar and the improvisations by the singer is phenomenal. Imman kept the interludes also engaging along with the brilliant show by the lead singers.

Imman roped Hariharan to croon the classical tinged track Aram Seyya Virumbu and it's always delight to listen Hariharan's singing. Though the tune lacks instant appeal, the sitar cues throughout the track and the lead singer makes this track enjoyable. Madhan Karky's trendy lyrics and equally fangled rendition by Aditya Rao and Sharanya Gopinath aside, Sophia has very little to offer. The interludes are hardly interesting one while Sharanya Gopinath's thunderous vocals and Karky's lyrics makes this song listenable till it lasts. Aei Arakka's middle Eastern rhythm structure has been heard umpteen number of times and Benny Dayal is able to infuse life to the song with his energetic vocals. The singer able to do justice for both the lyrics and busy orchestration by the composer. Dark Rooster has an intriguing atmospheric soundscape created around it and the theme should go well along with the visuals rather than as the standalone track. Badass Theme music fails to make an impact with the sonorous chant packed in less than one minute and the track has the shades of earlier Suseenthiran films. 

Verdict: Nenjil Thunivirundhal is the weakest album from the composer-director combination and it's high time that Imman should reinvent himself.

My Rating :6/10

Pick of the Album: Rail Aaraaro, Aram Seyya Virumbu

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Music Review (Tamil): Meyaadha Maan

Music Review (Tamil): Meyaadha Maan
Music Composer: Santosh Narayanan and Pradeep Kumar

Thangachi song treads on the familiar Santosh Narayanan's sound cues and except for the brilliant bassline throughout the song, the track for most of the parts is a dreary listen. Anthony Daasan's limited vocal range brings down the song further. Apart from the surprising guitar strums and piano keys, the song has very less to offer. Pradeep Kumar composes the blissful Enna Naan Seiven and the soft rock laden track has irresistible Santosh Narayanan flavor to it. Composer employed brilliant guitar strums and the pause in the interlude before Kalyani Nair's humming gives reverberating effect. Pradeep sings the song also and the rendition is top notch as usual.

Santosh Narayanan comes with a quirky Address Song- S Madhu and the composer nails both the arrangements as well as the singing portion. Though the lyrics sound pedestrian, the amusing tone of the song gels well with the track. The minimalistic rhythm portions work to the song favor, however, composer tries hard for the intoxicating tone in the interludes. Area Gaana brings back to the Santosh Narayanan's debut film Attakathi and Ka Ka Bala sounds astoundingly similar to Gaana Bala. The tune fails to engage the listener and SaNa's template sounds to be overused and becomes wearisome listen.

Megamo Aval rides mainly on the soulful rendition of Pradeep Kumar and Ananthu while Santosh Narayanan weaves his magic in the arrangements with his serene piano and synth backdrop. The brilliantly tuned anupallavi and the classical flute in the interludes linger on the listener's mind even after the song ends. Santosh Narayanan brings back Dhee after Irudhi Suttru and hands her once again brilliant string dominated song Rathna Katti. The strings sections are an absolute delight to listen and the singer's idiosyncratic vocals able lift the appeal of the song. Though the song may not be an instant chartbuster, the brilliance in the arrangements deserves repeated listen. Pradeep Kumar ends the soundtrack with Nee Mattum Podhum where retro tune meets rock flavored arrangements. The funky arrangements are backed by lovely rendition by Sid Sriram and Thanks to Pradeep for using Sid's vocals for a different kind of tune. Dharshana KT supports the singer effectively.

Verdict: Santosh Narayanan and Pradeep Kumar deliver a classy set of melodies for Meyaadha Maan and the melodies work much better than Santosh Narayanan's quirky tracks.

My Rating: 8/10

Pick of the Album: Enna Naan Seiven, Rathna Katti, Address Song, Nee Mattum Podhum, Meghamo Aval

P.S You can listen to the songs in Saavn.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Music Review (Kannada): Dalapathi

Music Review (Kannada): Dalapathi
Music Composer: Charan Raj

Early morning starts off with the gibberish sounds and follows into typical Kannada high-octane song and it's very surprising that this song is composed by Charan Raj. The only highlight being the brief Nadhaswaram sound and the tune is easily cakewalk for Vijay Prakash. The soundtrack turns slightly better with Gunu Gunuva backed by lovely Nelson's violins in the background and Guitar strums. Sindhuri Vishal steals the show with her terse husky vocals towards the end. Wah Re Wah with its Islamic style music in the background is adequately engaging mainly due to splendid rendition by Vijay Prakash and the classical guitar in the interlude is the brilliant touch from the composer. Yaarige Beku Ee Preethi is a short track sounds like an almost continuous melancholy version of Wah Re Wah mainly due to rhythm structure. The affecting violin is the highlight of this short track. Ishq Dishq is an another average techno sounds laden track which is hardly interesting despite all the pretentious arrangements. The title song starts off well with the folk prelude but soon treads on the familiar path but able to clasp the listeners due to Ananya Bhat's vocals and energetic background.

Verdict: After inventive tracks in GBSM and Pushpaka Vimana, Charan settles down to commercial soundtrack with mixed results.

My Rating:7/10

Pick of the Album: Wah Re Wah, Gunu Gunuva

P.S You can listen to the songs in Saavn.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Music Review (Tamil): Spyder

Music Review (Tamil): Spyder
Music Composer: Harris Jayaraj

Boom Boom's tune is a usual Harris Jayaraj material, but the mild Eastern flavoured background and the alluring sounds throughout the songs with Keba Jeremiah's racing guitar strums do wonders. Nikhita Gandhi owns this song with the right attitude and the song is an engaging listen despite treads on the familiarity zone and Karky's lyrics make it an interesting song till it lasts. Ciciliya Ciciliya is fairly good melody backed by guitar laden arrangements and Harris throws his gibberish sounds for the chorus. The percussion rhythms in the background gel well with the chorus while particularly loved the classical tinged brief moment by Sakthishree which is accompanied by mild classical flute by Jayanth. Overall, a lovely melody which is sung well by Haricharan and Sakthishree.

Aali Aali falls into the predictable groove and the tune sounds to be outdated while Brijesh Tripati Sandilya, Harini and Jogi Sunitha pump up the energy to this song. Harris channels his Andangakka sounds in the charanam portions effectively. However, the song is an engaging one, thanks to the lovely Manoj's solo violin and Seenu's Mridangam in the second interlude. Otrai Iravukai's absurd rhyming lyrics and fangled rendition by Pravin Saivi and Christopher Stanley aside, the track is a decent one from Harris and Sathya Prakash owns the second half with his semi-classical second half. Though the switch to classical stuff sounds discordant, Harris makes up with neat arrangements throughout the song. Spyder On Mission sticks to the composer's latest penchant for Techno sounds and the short track is adequate background material and fails to make an impact as a standalone theme.

Verdict: Harris Jayaraj's dependable sounds throughout the soundtrack and the tracks are engaging one despite borders on the familiarity.

My Rating: 7.5/10

Pick of the Album: Ciciliya Ciciliya, Boom Boom, Aali Aali