Saturday, November 10, 2007

Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal: The Music

Of all the music directors I've heard in recent times, Pritam has been the one I've been most curious about. He's hugely talented (Manish will tell you he plagiarizes on occasion), Chocolate remains one my favorite albums. But lately he's been losing his edge. How so?

In order to answer that question, you have to take a closer look at the formula that is emerging in his music. First and foremost, Pritam understands how to make a song sound good. And he does this by infusing it with multiple hooks. This is fairly key to his music (Shankar Ehsaan Loy have been trying to do this in their last few albums now). And his hooks are both lyrical and musical.

This allows Pritam to create instantly catchy songs - a huge asset with the MTV generation. If the melody is complex enough, this can also create a lasting tune. But there are disadvantages - in doing this, the song can lose the edge in its melody and sound way too finished. This has been happening a lot to Pritam lately: you often feel that you've heard his songs before - only you just ripped the cover off the CD.

On Dhan Dhana Dhan Goal, Pritam plays by his formula but you get the feeling he's worked harder to avoid the common pitfalls he has been finding himself in lately.

It helps that Goal opens with a corker - Billo Rani - voiced by Drift favorite Richa Sharma and Anand Raj Anand. Its an incredibly decadent, kababi qawwali about a firecracker of a girl playing hard to get. And its rousing enough to grab your attention immediately. At one point Richa admonishes her suitor "teri neeyat hai khoti/man hai paapi/harjai tu/beimaan tu/teri chaahat mein janoo raja kya hai/bholi nahi jaan tu" Raunchy and delicious! Did I mention Javed Akhtar wrote the lyrics? No? He did!

Pritam hires Neeraj Sridhar ("Hey Babyy") for Ishq ka kalma, gives it the requisite World Cup soccer chant and laces it with his formula. Its the closest he comes to slipping into the swamp he's built for himself. Fortunately, he rescues himself almost immediately and on the most unlikely of tracks. At the outset Hey Dude might be the track you expect to be formulaic. But Pritam powers it with superb percussion and uses Devrat to create a macho anthem. It's - how to say this - very "Bad Bad Girls" from Chak De!

There is one more anthemic track - Halla Bol - and its impact is mixed. Its good because its a chance to listen to Daler Mehndi who gets too few opportunities to sing for Bollywood, but its a highly simplistic melody, perhaps deliberately so - it might sound better in a stadium than it does on headphones.

The final original track on the CD is Tara Ru about a man (voiced by Javed Ali) urging his teammates to lift themselves up and make a final effort for glory. Pritam starts this track with a countrified acoustic guitar followed by death march bagpipes - an interesting combination that he builds on through the track. There are some scrumptious change of paces and overlays with different beats. Its an attempt to take something simple and create a complex melody. And I'm happy to say that it works quite well - just like the rest of the CD.



Anonymous said...

i'm addicted to 'Billo Rani' of the best songs of the year.

Unknown said...

No offence to anyone but this movie looks like a second class attempt to recreate the magic of Chak de India.

I will definitely give the music a chance though and try to listen to it asap...

All the reviews on OSO and Saawariya haven't been that promising, have they? I think Saawariya might be a bit too stylised for the average Hindi movie viewer... It also seems a little slow moving and well, blast-from-the-pastish... so many people may opt to watch OSO this Diwali for the sheer colour and vibrancy it exudes.


Anonymous said...

the movie looks so lame

John can't act, I saw a promo where he is dancing or should i say "trying to dance".

He was pulling faces too. Also Bipasha, does she do anything apart from trying to look sexy and do some song numbers?

Everytime she tries to do a serious role where she has clothes on, it falls flat on her face because then we get to see that she has nothing going for her apart from her so called "glam image".

Unknown said...

I've really only seen her in Dhoom 2 - in which she was awful in the second half and terrific in the first - but for some reason I'm very fond of Bips.

John Abraham is like Keanu Reeves - there'll be some roles that will match his personality and most that don't.

Anonymous said...

Ozza, I dont think Goal was an attempt to copy Chak De India. This movie was planned a couple of years ago.There was a contest on TV last year called 'John aur kaun' and the winner got to act in the movie.A boy from Hyderabad won the contest and shot last year for the movie. My kids were so impressed, but now they are quite surprised that they dont get to see the boy Rishi in any of the promos!!
As for Saawariya, I have spoken to many people and not even one has said he/she would like to try out the movie. Tho Bansali is lucky he can always blame OSO for the flopshow. He doesnt realise that even if the movie had been released on some other date, it woud have been a flop.

Anonymous said...

Ah! Billo Rani is the new Beedi for me. Although i thought the song is a bit like the mix of beedi & Kajra Re. I just didnt like Kajra re prob since i dont like any of the hypesters that starred in tht song.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you Meg, Bipasha can't act. The only thing going for her is the fact that she's hot...otherwise, she's a total flop. I havent heard the songs of Goal yet, but judging from your review, I'll give them a try.

As for OSO and Saawariya, I know a few people who saw them and they said both the movies are terrible. I wanted to see Saawariya at first, but not so much anymore...

Anonymous said...

Aspi, same here. I am rather fond of Bips as well. To me she is the only one who can do sexy unlike the others who when doing sexy either look like ice-maidens (Ash), spoilt brats (Kareena) or cute girl next door (Vidya Balan)

Anonymous said...

No reports of Pritam Plagiarism in Goal yet. However, Ishq ka Kalma sounds pretty similar to the Bhool Bhulaiya title song (Pritam's own work). Well, that is called being repetitive, not plagiarism.