Sachin Gupta and Atif Aslam â the combination that rocked the world in 2006 with their smash hit non-film album Doorie. While Sachin Gupta tried his luck to make a mark in Bollywood with his music in three completely different films in nature â Dil Kabaddi, Jugaad and the recently released Bolo Raam, the music of which is known for its excellent track Maa rendered with sensitivity by Roop Kumar Rathod. While none of the three soundtracks stood out in the sales and fame charts, Sachin was already established as a composer with an eclectic potential though some of his songs packing in enough punch for people to get impressed.
And now, Sachin is back in a film that has generated immense buzz around it â Prince (previously known as Prince â Itâs Showtime, under which name the first official theatrical trailer was promoted), directed by Kookie Gulati, who had previously teamed up with team Doorie to compose the music videos of three singles (that are popular even today) takes the whole teamwork forward, and with Shiraz Ahmedâs seemingly interesting story, we are ensured to expect something pretty different out of the movie.
Leaving other specifics of the movie aside though let us now focus on the music. For a fact that we all know now that this could be Sachinâs biggest musical break ever, does it impress? Or does it distress? Does Tips as a music industry keep its track record by delivering another hit-in-the-making? Read on to know more!
Starting off with some grand piano, on wet mix with delay and some reverb, we have Garima Jhingonâs sensuously haunting vocals striking the nail right in the head. With the piano still playing in the background, the eclectic fusion of vocals, the lone keyboard instrument and the effects, we have some cool sound effects, some slow beats, some bass and a very mild percussion that completely sets the mood, and by the time the much hyped âmotifâ in the trailer featuring the electric guitar strums with the synthesizer loop enters the scene, youâve already started liking O Mere Khuda so much youâre already either shaking your leg, or tapping it, or shaking your head vigorously, depending on the situation youâre in. Atif Aslamâs vocals have always been the sole USP of his own songs, but here, just like in his songs in Doorie, his vocals and the music form a very perfect blend. And considering this fast-paced track is not something Atif has done a lot in his career â weâd rather say the word rarely â this is certainly a kind of first for him as well as us.
Weâve not really heard him in a new avatar here, as his energetic vocals are noted for his soft-rock songs, but his voice is sure as hell addictive and the kind of music he sings doesnât backfire on him; in fact, it merges well enough for us to lap it up! The beats, the pads, the guitar, the synth-instruments and the vocals, all blend to form an overall addictive song that clicks on the first listen itself! And with the kind of promotion going on for the song right now (a cutting-edge music video), thereâs nothing to complain about. Sameerâs lyrics are an added plus point! A must listen, and surely a must repeat; this song will capture the imagination of Atif Aslam fans and dance-music enthusiasts. Crank it up and enjoy the beat!
The piano in the start is replaced by a synth-reed for an equally enjoyable of O Mere Khuda (Dance Mix) by DJ Suketu and AKS. The beats are fun and people are guaranteed to shake a leg at some point of time to this remix. Occasional loops of âO Mere Khudaâ, âTere Baahon Meinâ (by Garima Jhingon), and âNa Jaane Kab Huaâ give the song a subtle impact, thus making this one of the better club mixes of the year as of yet. Those who were missing the riffs of the electric guitar for the âmotifâ of the movie will be overjoyed when it makes its âspecial appearanceâ before the second stanza! An enjoyable hear, and a good alternate to the original, though I personally prefer the original for the sheer energy.
âO Mere Khudaâ returns in an alternate romantic avatar with Aa Bhi Jaa Sanam, to which Atif soulfully croons his heart out. Garima Jhingon does nothing new apart from singing the same lines from âO Mere Khudaâ, but her voice has the âitâ factor which hasnât worn off completely. In a way similar to âO Mere Khudaâ, this track also starts with the grand piano with a slight reverb, but this time a different; a more mellow tune is played, and once Atifâs killer alaaps accompany the piano tune, you know youâre floored already! The beats are slightly âpaceyâ, but the tempo and overall flow is slow and smooth, for the simple fact that the beats are subtly placed and donât really get on-your-face or clichĂ©d, which works highly in favor of the song.
The sensitivity in the rendering of lyrics by Atifâs vocals completely revolutionize the impact of the song, which should also be noted for its fantastic composition by Gupta, cutting-edge sound arrangements by Sandeep Shirodkar and apt mixing by Eric Pillai. Sameerâs lyrics are absolutely great to listen to, and it seems after quite a long gap of seemingly simplistic and sometimes-tacky lyrics he might have gone on to make in some of the movies over the years, this is one song he has written really well. Yet another winner in the kitty, this surely is, as this has the replay value it requires to make it an addictive listen!
The song returns in a âDance Mixâ version that turns faster in beat with a haunting feel. The soul is fortunately retained in this version thus making the remix an enjoyable and hooking affair. It would be impossible to choose between the two versions, as both of the songs have a certain zing and charm that hooks you from the word âgoâ thanks to Suketu and AKSâs world-class remixing. This oneâs a must hear and yet another must have and repeat in your playlist!
Atif Aslam is to Tips music what Neeraj Sridhar is to Pritam, and that is exactly why he returns in yet another song; and this time itâs a duet with â this is pretty strange â Shreya Ghoshal! Atif Aslam has kept having strange collaborations for duets in his previous duets (Alisha Chinai, Alka Yagnik) and this time as well, he manages to surprise us with the credits of Shreya Ghoshal at the back of the CD cover with the song Tere Liye. And the surprise doesnât end there â the singers are well chosen; their vocals sound perfectly compatible. In fact, the singers turn out to be the USP of the song. While it is a pleasant surprise to see (or rather hear) Shreya Ghoshal trying out genres that donât require her voice to be the coy type, Atif Aslam is the perfect choice for the male vocals, as not only does the song require a certain energy, it also has a tangential romantic angle, which Atif Aslam blends yet again to produce a winner. Sachin Guptaâs music is real fun to hear â it, in fact, reminds us of the song âDil Dil Dilâ from one of Sanjay Guptaâs old movies â Aatish, which had some romance, but also had a really up-tempo feel to it. This song adds a rock angle to the âdanceyâ feel that it supports throughout. A very good that grows on you after a few listens, and you tend to put this in as one of your favorites.
The song marks its return in two remixes â one, a Dance Mix, and the other, a Hip-Hop Remix. The dance mix has a really catchy set of beats, an addictive background pad, some cool supporting percussions, a continuous Arabic styled accordion-loop and cutting edge mixing, Suketu and AKS will have your minds blown away by the way the track stands out.
The hip-hop mix is fun, and while thereâs nothing much to say about the composition, except for the fact that the genre has been classily represented with a lot of obvious Indian influences that makes you groove to the song while it lasts, one will easily prefer the original version and the dance mix to this one.
And if you thought that this was the end of the different versions of âTere Liyeâ, prepare to be surprised, as it returns in a completely new, Unplugged avatar towards the end of the track. Sachin the composer lends his own vocals to this one, and while one might have some doubts to his singing abilities when one reads the credits on the back of the CD cover, the doubts literally vanish away once the song starts with Monali Thakurâs auto-tuned, layered, and softly-crooned alaaps. Sachinâs vocals are obviously auto-tuned and modulated, but the overall effect his vocals create towards the whole song is phenomenal! Hear it to believe it, as the man has sung with all his heart! The music is fitting and extremely melodious, and the lyrics are slightly modified, but retain the overall meaning. This song clicks from the word go and stands out from all the four versions of the song, hands down!
The slight reverb (and flanger in some parts) in Atifâs vocals make them sound so much more amazing. Sachinâs music captures the intensity and the emotion of the lyrics really well, thus making the song yet another winner! This oneâs surely going on repeat mode in the playlists of many personal media players in days to come.
The energy goes two notches higher with DJ Suketuâs remix that doesnât rip the intensity off the vocals or strip the soul off the original. It indeed makes it faster paced, but fortunately doesnât turn music into noise like many remixes usually do without necessity. Worth a hear!
If the listeners ever wanted a mellower, romantic and chilled out alternative, then they are in for a pleasant surprise as Kaun Hoon Main later comes back in an excellently produced Lounge Mix, which has to be the most impressive mix in the album so far! All one would need to do to enhance the feel of the song would be to turn off the lights, sit back, and soak in the melody. Excellent and classy, this remix will capture the imaginations of people who love chilled out, slow music. This one is strongly recommended for the lovers of ambient/lounge music. Two thumbs up!
We move on to two numbers sans Atifâs vocals, the first one in line being Jiyara Jiyara, crooned by Alisha Chinai, who, it seems, has tried really hard to sound seductive enough, but fails miserably, not due to the fact that she doesnât sound seductive enough for the number, but for the mere fact that the lyrics are tacky (the main testament to my statement being â Ki Mera Jiyara Jiyara Thatâs it Thatâs it For you Baby now!).
The constant chanting of âAh Aaahâ at some places is completely random. What apparently saves the song from its almost-inevitable doom is the rock-solid sound design and arrangements, and superb mixing. The beats are, needless to say, addictive at best. Other arrangements like percussions and background pads are also really well-suited for the number to qualify as something you can really listen to. Sachin Gupta, Eric Pillai and the sound arrangers have completely changed the way the song would be perceived.
After a few listens, the listeners will surely feel that the bad, and sometimes clichĂ© lyrics can be forgiven; because if Imran Khan can get away with the crowd in âBounce Billoâ, âHey Girlâ and âAmplifierâ because of the way he presents the songs, itâs obvious that this song should also find its way to the crowds who love dance music. Oh, and did I forget Hard Kaur? Letâs just not talk about her here. Sans her, the music might have caught on anyway. Hard Kaur, in fact slightly dampens the song. Period. Overall, worth a few listens. It has a chance of growing on you after a few listens.
DJ Suketu has proved his worth, yet again, in this album, by completely changing the look and feel of the song. By raising the tempo a bit higher, and adding a lot of the electro-dhol beat, the Jiyara Jiyara (Bhangra Mix) scores big time. Alisha Chinaiâs auto-tuned vocals make a huge impact over here. And the bass â oh, the bass! The common audio engineer would surely qualify the song, in his/her own words, as âhotâ and with a âsick beat and bassâ. The pad is not really heard, but one can obviously figure it out with a few listens. Another excellent remix in the kitty of Tips and in the compilation of Prince.
Remember âZara Zara Touch Meâ? Remember how apparently âhotâ it sounded? Though Monaliâs first appearance as a singer was in Jaan-E-Mannâs âKubool Kar Leâ four years ago, Raceâs âZara Zara Touch Meâ rose her to unprecedented heights. Her seductive voice, Sameerâs lyrics and Pritamâs rock-solid composition hit it off like never before. That was a Tips movie. Two years later, she comes back in a hot avatar yet again, though in here, the song is much more upbeat and her voice is a little more flexible and her cooing during the stanzas are much more profound, adding that little extra touch of glamour to the song. Sachin Guptaâs music blows your mind yet again.
Sameerâs lyrics are apt for the situation of the song, thus generating no qualms toward the quality. Eric Pillaiâs mixing adds the huge boost and slickness to it. The best part about the song is that this one doesnât have a remix like all the others do. Nevertheless, it would have been interesting to hear how Suketu and AKS would change the tune, since all the remixes in the album so far have been excellent enough to be foot tapping and very, very groovy.
And though Ishq Mein is the official last song of the album, the soundtrack ends with two other songs â the first one of them being an extended Megamix of almost all the Prince songs, sans âIshq Meinâ. Suketu strikes back yet again â and it seems like heâs in complete in this whole album. Almost all the songs make a small appearance and this is when you notice that all the songs that have been made for the album have the same key and the same pitch (which is why âIshq Meinâ might not have been included because of this âdifferenceâ). This oneâs a sure recommendation for all the dance enthusiasts and club goers who like âthe beatâ and âthe thumpâ. AKS should be credited here for some really amazing arrangements and mixing.
The other two songs is a short theme of the movie, which turns out to be a very catchy and energetic piece, though the only qualm would be that itâs too short for its own good. This reminds me of the theme of Race which was nothing but the motif of âRace Saanson Kiâ. A similar thing happens here when the electric guitar riffs are combined with synth-strings (an extension of the motif of âO Mere Khudaâ and âAa Bhi Jaa Sanamâ) to make the motif even more impact and intense. The beats are â at the risk of repeating myself â addictive, yet again! The bass and the percussion loops fit the song to the T. This oneâs worth a listen (and many more to come), and for all itâs worth, it could double up as a really snazzy ring tone to your mobile too!
Prince, as a soundtrack, speaks for itself. There is first of all, enough fodder for Atif Aslamâs fans. Secondly, the album never â and I mean never â has a dull moment, being a dark, edgy and intense, albeit really catchy soundtrack all through. Thirdly, the compositions and the lyrics are a testimony to the fact that this album has some âattitudeâ, though I do mean it in the most positive sense. And lastly â Sachin Gupta has finally managed to score; to make his mark in Bollywood â bigtime! With almost all the songs managing to impress listeners and fans alike, this album is destined to remain on the charts for a very long time, just like Tipsâ last musical hit Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani did. This oneâs a surefire keeper! Go grab your copy right away!