Aisha is a major achievement for man of the moment Amit Trivedi as the soundtrack moves him into mainstream commercial cinema for the very first time. Until now the composer has been restricted to offbeat films such as Aamir (2008), Dev.D (2008) and the forthcoming Udaan (2010). But the spectacular success of the music from the first two films has clearly not gone unnoticed, either by fans or by the industry. So whilst previously he relied on visionary producers such as Anurag Kashyap to back his unique musical talents, he is now being wooed by the wider fraternity such as Anil Kapoor Productions. He is also being partnered with acclaimed lyricist Javed Akhtar for the first time (although crucially, Amit brings his own singing dynasty with him). Whilst these achievements should not be overlooked you do wonder how he will manage his newfound fame and attention (remember he has many projects outstanding for 2010 so the pressure will not ease anytime soon). Can he continue with his innovative musical philosophy or will it be negated to meet the demands of commercial cinema? Let’s find out (although the knowledge that lucky mascot Abhay Deol stars in the film is promising indeed)…
Track 1 is the bubbly and free spirited “Suno Aisha” that is hogging the trailers and promos and rightly so as it promotes the film and main star (Sonam Kapoor) perfectly! Super hip, creative and fun, the song oozes vibrancy and colour thanks to a dollop of peppy beats, guitar fusion and some hatke sounds. However the killer USP is the superb trumpet, which sounds fantastic and gives the song another dimension altogether! Amit’s singing was below par in Udaan (he sang too often in that album) but no such complaints here as his youthful vocals breeze through this song with striking confidence. Backing vocals by Nakash Aziz and Ash King are cool. Javed Akhtar’s lyrics are simple if a little uninspiring but by the end of the song we know who is the best in the whole world: AISHA! Overall this is a stunning and lively start to the soundtrack indeed not to mention one of the most inventive songs in a long while...
Track 2 “Gal Mitthi Mitthi” is simply mind-blowing! The eclectic mix of traditional bhangra sounds topped with delicious modern synth beats warp you back to the music of Dev.D - can one praise it any more than that? The Punjabi vocals are evoked powerfully and passionately again by Tochi Raina (not to be confused with Toshi Sabri) who returns after his stunning rendition of “Pardesi” (Dev.D). His hook line “Gal Mitthi Mitthi Bol” is so addictive you wonder if anyone else could have sung it as well, kudos to Amit for his selection. Once you get over the initial craze of the music and singer, listen to the lyrics carefully and they have that trademark stamp of Javed saab. This is a love song like no other, this is a love song the Amit way and it totally rocks I mean ROCKS !!
Track 4 “Behke Behke” ignites with the sound of flamenco dancing and a stunning (flamenco) guitar. Before you can blink Amit has reverted to his experimental mad-cap philosophy to music and what follows is an amazing fusion of sounds. By taking the beautiful sounds of Andalucia as the platform for his song, he just adds his own ingredients of dhol beats and Rap (by Robert Omulo) to energise proceedings and turn the song into another winner brimming with fun, colour and LIFE! Singing by Anushka Manchanda, Samrat Kaushal and Raman Mahadevan is synched superbly with echo effects and some explosive mixing with the striking shouts from flamenco dancers! Such is the impact of the music here that you find it hard to concentrate on the lyrics. Javed Saab must be wondering if his lyrics have ever been ignored so much in a soundtrack before! Just. Listen. To. This. Amazing. Track. Now. Creative ingenious!
Just when you thought things couldn’t get better Amit takes you back to one of his most haunting tracks “Ek Lau” from Aamir (2008), with the sound of some beautiful piano plucking. Thus commences the most melodious song of the album, Track 5 “Lehrein” . Actually any comparisons with “Ek Lau” end there because Lehrein’s dark mood and emotions depend on a different instrument altogether, the stunning viola (similar to a violin) which sounds magical throughout and later taken over by the violin itself. The sad and reminiscing mood is otherwise lifted by the use of soft rock instrumentation during the main singing verses that are rendered softly by the talented Anusha Mani (she sang “Lazy Lamhe” from Thoda Pyar Thoda Magic). Neuman Pinto and Nikhil D’Souza provide the backing vocals. Lyrics are effective to create a somber mood. Overall a lovely song that contains plenty of moments to pull at the chords of your heart…
Tracks 7 and 8 are “Gal Mitthi Mitthi (The Bombay Bounce Dhol Mix)” and “Lehrein Remix (The Bombay Bounce Lounge Mix)” . Both are remixed by the awesome DJ Lloyd and Discreet. Both remixes are subtle and give due respect to the originals.
On the one hand the music for Aisha symbolises the success story of Amit Trivedi as a composer who has been promoted to higher echelons of Hindi cinema and one cannot deny that success to him because it is very much deserving. He has turned Hindi music on its head. Literally. The soundtrack is also a success because it connects Amit's music to the mass listener for the first time and chances are it will be a massive hit. On the other hand however, Aisha also represents a challenge to Amit because such promotion results in higher demand and expectations- the question is can he continue to deliver his philosophy of fresh, innovative and ‘hatke’ music? Only time will tell but from the evidence here, it’s not only Anurag who is a believer in his music.
Put simply, the music of Aisha is super cool, vibrant and fun, has tons of variety and is an extremely colourful and inventive soundtrack that defines the new-age music we have come to associate with Amit Trivedi. It should work wonders for the film too (one hopes it is fully utilised). Special mention for his own singing dynasty who perform superbly as well. The only thing missing like a sore thumb are the brilliant lyrics by his usual partner, Amitabh Bhattacharya (Javed Akhtar's lines are disappointing overall). Otherwise, for now at least, Amit has the midas touch and can do no wrong…oh my, his fresh stamp on the industry is a godsend. As for the rest of the (lazy) music directors out there, listen up, eat your heart out and well…retire?!