The past couple of albums by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy were good ("Rudraksh" and "Lakshya") but the soundtrack of "Kyun! Ho Gaya Na..." has them more in the form that we all know and love. They seem very inspired by the film and that shows in their music, which is fresh and breezy.
The first clip of music that we all started hearing in the trailers is the perky "Pyar Main Sau Uljhane Hain" (sung by Shankar Mahadevan, Vijay Prakash, Mahalaxmi and Sneha Pant). This is another number that belongs to the same theme as "Jaane Kyun Log Pyar Karte Hain" ("Dil Chahta Hai") and other similar songs by S-E-L. This song has a very Hollywood-ish musical twist on the "pyar is good" versus "pyar museebat hai" theme. The orchestral arrangement reminds one of Broadway musicals and adds to the zany feel of the track. The vocal contradiction between Mahalaxmi´s sweetness and Shankar´s cocky contemptuousness complements the theme beautifully.
If ever there was an example of fabulous chemistry between all singers in a track then "No No Kyun Ho Gaya Na" is it. The excellent chorus of Shankar, Kunal Ganjawala, Dominique Cerejo, Loy Mendonca and Chetan Shashital whip up an infectious mood in this upbeat number. Don´t be surprised if after listening to this you find yourself humming "no no!" and "yeah yeah yeah". Those are the most used words in the track (if those words sum up your sarcastic reaction to the song then that is a different story!).
Now, on to my least favourite in the entire album... "Aao Na" is not a bad song but it is quite dull in parts. You may like this one if you have liked most of S-E-L´s slow tunes so far. For me, their slow songs have been hit and miss. "Aao Na" is certainly better than the mind-numbingly boring "Kitni Baatein" ("Lakshya") but that is not saying much. A positive thing to note here is Sadhana Sargam´s beautiful voice, which delicately caresses the tune. Udit Narayan accompanies her with a forgettable rendition. Javed Akhtar is a master of words when it comes to describing feelings and here he comes up with the goods. It is unfortunate that the lyrics (as well as Sadhana´s rendition) have been wasted on such a lacklustre tune.
Judging from their previous songs together, Shaan and S-E-L make a superb combination. And indeed, they do not let us down with "Main Hoon" (co- sung by Sunidhi Chauhan). The track is basically hip-hop but with a western folk feel mixed into the tune. Shaan and Sunidhi are perfect for such an energised and highly charged number. Sunidhi´s soft vocals are cute when she croons "jao jao jao na..." followed by Shaan´s charming "dekho dekho dekho na..." This is another fabulous song after the impressive first two.
Not quite in the league of excellence (but still good nonetheless) is the situational "Baat Samjha Karo" (Chetan Shashital, Shankar, Javed Ali), created to suit Amitabh Bachchan´s onscreen persona. Interestingly, most of the songs in this soundtrack are about a war of words between two key characters in the film. Here, Amitabh Bachchan´s character is dissuading someone from thinking about love. Out of all the songs, "Baat Samjha Karo" is the only one that has a composition that is not too western in terms of its orchestration. Chetan Shashital does a great job of portraying Big B´s forceful personality through his singing.
The album ends on a high note with the lovely "Dheere Dheere". Shankar Mahadevan´s rendition is sublime. His expressive singing takes one back to the old songs when artists like Mohammad Rafi and Geeta Dutt sang with such feeling. The music is kept low-key but is still very atmospheric. This emotionally charged piece will make your heart want to dance.
Barring one dud ("Aao Na"), the soundtrack for "Kyun! Ho Gaya Na..." is a must-buy for its quirky yet energetic tunes. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy have once again come up with another winner!