Tuesday, June 10, 2014

CityLights: Music Review

Starring: Raj Kumar Yadav, Patralekha
Music Composer: Jeet Ganguli

CityLights Music Review Raj Kumar Yadav Patralekha

Any Bhatt involvement in any Bollywood film usually indicates a fantastic musical score, and such is the case for CityLights. Produced by Mukesh Bhatt, under the Vishesh banner this film carries serious weight in the industry when it comes to musical content and film content. Bengali music producer, Jeet Ganguli reemerges from the woodwork as he toggles between Bengali and Hindi Cinema. His last two Hindi cinema ventures, Raaz 3 and Youngistan, were widely popular. Boasting experienced singers like Ustad Rashid Khan and Usha Utup with younger newcomers like Arjit Singh and Neeti Mohan, this CityLights fuses both of the best worlds.

CityLights begins with Muskurane by Arjit Singh.  This song captures the romantic yearning reminiscent of Raaz 3.  Lyrically and musically, this song follows the somber trepidation of most Bhatt film music, but is different from its predecessors with the special Ganguli touch.The angst of Singh's vocals are smoothed elegantly with a touch of piano and guitar 5/5.

Later in the album, we have a second rendition, Muskurane (unplugged) by Mohammad Irfan. Mohammad Irfan is a rising star in Bollywood, he was seen most recently singing for the Bollywood film Ek Villain, which I address in my music review. This slows the tempo down more than Arjit Sigh's version, bearing a lighter piano sound mixed with violins. Even though slightly different, this song is better than Singh's version. 4/5

Raj Kumar Yadav and Patralekha  sad City lights
The most comfortable way to sit
Darbadar by Neeti Mohan is a haunting song obviously set in the cityscape that  manages to keep the somber trend of the album. Mohan's voice has the tone to masterfully capture a feeling of wandering and loneliness that is expressed throughout CityLights. Again, a rich piano sound and deep emotions adds to the quality of the song. 5/5

Arjit Singh returns once again to CityLights with Ek Charraiya, and this is not the last we see of him. Hitting higher notes than he did with Muskurane, this song is a little more folksy than the first two on the album. Ganguli, I'm sure, has made sure that this captures the essence of Bengali folk songs with the slow beat. This is definitely one of the more optimistic songs on this album, however refined the happiness is kept. Despite the differentiation with Bengali folk, this song doesn't really offer too much. Decent. 3.5/5

Unsurprisingly, Ek Charraiya (unplugged) follows with Ganguli himself behind the microphone. This song is nearly identical to the first version and is not really as unplugged as it says it is.It depends on personal preference, which singer you choose, Jeet Ganguli or Arjit Singh. Ganguli's voice seems to be more suited, this time, to his own composition. 4/5

Arjit Singh has his third win on CityLights with Soney Do. Although this song works to only add to the slow pace the album has set, it intrinsically has its own personal music quality compared to the other. The alaps that Singh does towards the ends of the song add value to this song. Although, it can be more seen as a song to move the film along, it does have its own place, content wise on the album. It has rich instrumentals like the songs before it. 3.5/5
Raj Kumar Yadav and Patralekha and Child, Bollywood Meme
The album ends with an upbeat CityLights(Title Song) that deviates from the rest of the album . Ustad Rashid Khan piece starts beautifully as it is classical against electric guitar. This song gets tarnished quickly, when Usha Utup, who bears a voice bordering on masculine enters the song. Think back to the title song of Hare Rama Hare Krishna in the seventies. She has the hook of the song, unfortunately, and presides over a majority of the song, thus bringing it down with her. Despite all against it, this song is still decent. 3/5

Jeet Ganguli is able to bring the music of CityLights to the heights of Bhatt soundtracks. The music of this film surpasses many of the current albums that are out in Bollywood at the moment with songs that are rich in both musical and lyrical content. Expect this soundtrack to create wave throughout Bollywood.

My Picks: Muskarane, Darbadar, Ek Charraiya 

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