Hattrick is a movie that comprises of four stories that have cricket involved in one way or another. The movie comes out just as the ICC tournament begins in Barbados, and I am sure will bring out many cricket fans for a viewing in the local cinema hall. The uniquely named Ronnie Screwvala and UTV have produced this movie. The film showcases the acting talents of Danny Denzongpa, Nana Patekar, Kunal Kapoor (in his follow up to Rang De Basanti), Rimi Sen, and Paresh Rawal. The director of Taxi No. 9211, Deewar, Chori Chori, and Kaache Dhaage, Milan Luthria returns with this offering. Almost non-existent marketing for the movie and music has resulted in a soundtrack that comes just under the radar.
Music director Pritam is the man responsible for all the songs on this soundtrack. Pritam exploded onto the music scene with the soundtrack to Dhoom (specifically the song “Dhoom Machale”). Unfortunately he seems to be slipping into the role of the modern age Anu Malik. He often plagiarizes not only from others, but himself and has developed a certain “house” style that results in similar sounding tracks. One can argue that all music directors have this problem as they sign on for multiple movies a year. After all, how many times can one dip into the hypothetical creative well? Let’s find out if Pritam has dipped one too many times, or whether he’s come up with something original with this soundtrack. So put on your blue cricket uniforms and let’s do some musical batting!
The first song titled, Ek Pal Mein starts out similarly to the song Ya Ali (the super-hit track from the soundtrack of Gangster) and also carries fragrances of Bas Ek Pal’s title track, which was composed by Mithoon. The opening of this song sounded so familiar that I had to listen to Ya Ali to make sure that it wasn’t just a case of déjà vu. K.K.’s melodious voice adds tremendously to this familiar tune and is the redeeming factor for this song. The music is peppy and upbeat with some deep lyrics by Mayur Puri (who writes about making the best of living in the moment); however, the music fails to provide any originality to the listener. It does not stand up to repeated listenings as it is just too similar to what we have already heard in Gangster, Woh Lamhe, and Bas Ek Pal.
The second song, Rabba Khair Kare will get a lot of airplay in clubs. Bhangra combined with Hip Hop in a kind of Bhangra-Hop beat. It’s sung with a lot of gusto by Labh Janjua (aka Punjabi MC, and previously heard on the soundtrack for Pyar Ke Side Effects) and has lyrics by Mayur Puri. You can’t sit still for this one as the beats combined with the singing will get even the most dance adverse individual onto the dance floor and raise their arms up in the air.
Pritam steps up and continues bringing his best game forward with the third song on the soundtrack, Wicket Bacha. The song is a perfect tune to cheer on India and our cricket team. The song combines dance hall with Caribbean hall, resulting in something that would be at home at Carnegie Hall or at the cricket games in Barbados. Who else could sing a song like this, but Usha Uthup? Pritam has stated in various interviews that he likes bringing back older singers and give them new chances (as he did with Amit Kumar for Fight Club). He lives up to his statement by giving Usha Uthup the perfect song for her comeback. I dare you to not feel some patriotic pride for the Indian cricket team when listening to this song. The lyrics written by Mayur Puri are patriotic and playful. This song should be the theme song for the Indian Cricket team.
After two stumps in a row, one wonders whether Pritam can complete the Hattrick. Unfortunately, the fourth track, Kahan Kho Gaya gives the listener an intense feeling of déjà vu just like the above Ek Pal Mein. Taken straight from the musical style of Woh Lamhe, one almost feels transported into that movie’s soundtrack. I had to check the credits twice to confirm that it isn’t K.K. singing this song as Soham Chakbarty provides the vocals by channeling the spirit of the aforementioned singer. The well-written lyrics are by Ashiesh Pandit. The most familiar part is the musical structure of the song and the “whoah whoah” chorus that reminds the listener of Pritam’s past plays. Again, just like Ek Pal Mein, the song is not bad, I just have to take points off for the lack of originality. This one is definitely a little bit of spin bowling from the music director and is more of a QUACK TRICK.
So what’s the score so far? Pritam has two outs and two wickets (in this cricket themed review).
Question: What happens when you put together three music directors? Answer: You get a sensitive ballad that is easily one of the best songs on the soundtrack. Pritam, Roop Kumar Rathod and Vishal Dadlani (of Vishal – Shekhar fame) bring you the aptly titled fifth track, I Am Coming Home. The song is framed by the vocals of Caralisa Monteiro who last informed us that she was “Feeling Blue” from the soundtrack to “Pyar Ke Side Effects.” The song is very melodious and melancholic and the music fits perfectly with the vocals. The poignant lyrics by Vishal Dadlani are sensitive and show a great deal of maturity. I am sure that anyone who has come back to his or her home country after a long time will relate to this song. Pritam has pulled off a beauty with this song.
The sixth track on this above average soundtrack is not an original composition by Pritam, but rather a remix of the song Jab Chaye Mera Jaadu (original music by Rajesh Roshan) from the movie Loot Maar. I wish I could say that the remix blew me away, but it didn’t. Remixes have become so commonplace, that it really takes something special to satisfy the listener’s ear. The remix by Zero DB
The sixth track on this above average soundtrack is not an original composition by Pritam, but rather a remix of the song Jab Chaye Mera Jaadu (original music by Rajesh Roshan) from the movie Loot Maar. I wish I could say that the remix blew me away, but it didn’t. Remixes have become so commonplace, that it really takes something special to satisfy the listener’s ear. The remix by Zero DBis average, with adequate vocals by Malaxmi Iyer. Not an all out (innings ended), but merely some AVERAGE BATTING.
The album continues on with two good reprises of Kahan Kho Gaya and I Am Coming Home, wherein the reprise for I Am Coming Home really stands out. Then, there are very good remixes of Rabba Khair Kare (remixed by DJ A_Myth) and Wicket Bacha (remixed by Bunty Rajput & Emu). Be prepared to hear these two remixes when you go out for a night of dancing at your local club.
How many runs will you make with this soundtrack? That’s up to you, but I can tell you that “Rabba Khair Kare”, “Wicket Bacha”, and “I Am Coming Home” should be definite additions to your playlist.
So what’s the score you ask with this latest offering from Pritam? Like any good cricket game, there are highs and lows. All in all, the soundtrack is quite satisfying, but I can’t help but think that the music director has yet to bring on his best game. Pritam is the batsman in providing us with a soundtrack as varied as the cricket themes that the movie “Hattrick” is based on. So make a run for it, and listen to this “wicket” album.