When I first listened to the soundtrack of Race I found it annoying. Most two CD sets that keep repeating the same songs (and thats just on one CD) tend to do that to me. Plus lyrics like "your body's like a snake ma, your body's like a snake charma" sound wrong at so many levels even if you are - you know - hip to the hop.
But once you dig through the debris and get to know it intimately - you realize that there is much enjoyment in getting to know the bits. Thus I anoint it as the guilty pleasure CD of 2008, in line with other tacky luminaries such as Masti and Mr Hot Mr Kool.
There are several reasons to enjoy Race (Pritam does the music, Sameer the lyrics) and since CDs such as these are hard to review, I'll just briefly mention a few things.
Atif Aslam's Tere Bin (from Bas Ek Pal) and earlier Aadat (from Kalyug) were memorable songs and heralded the arrival of a unique voice. But horrors, the more I heard of him the more I began to realize how inflexible his voice is. And its exposed here in all its gory on a song called Pehli Nazar Mein - which entrusted to a breezy voice like Zubin Garg might have actually been able to transcend its blah treatment.
But if you like Atif (and there are legions out there - like Pri who has a snark about this song) you'll dig this.
On the other hand I enjoyed Dekho Nashe Mein (Rock the Dance Floor) (Shaan, Sunidhi and KK do vocal duties). Not only is the word rock finally used by someone like its supposed to be but also lyrics like "aage bhi yahi show, peechhe bhi yahi show" spun me into a state of confounded bliss. The song has a delicious salsa flavor to it and also comes, like my Doritos, in an additional Fiesta Mix (which sounds the same only after several rounds of coffee for the percussion department)
Finally, Zara Zara Touch Me is a delectably sleazy En Vogue like song filled with enough little dings and prattles that it has me mistakenly reaching for my cell phone two or three times whenever it plays. Monali - ostensibly chosen to sing this entirely because she has a sensuous speaking voice and a phirang accent - pours her heart into it. Tie me up and call me Beyonce, but I loved it!