'Mission Mangal' and 'Batla House' music review: Inspirational, but not memorable

This Independence Day two films have hit the big screen together, to arouse patriotic fervour within all Bollywood-following country people. Whether or not the two manage to do that remains to be seen, but let’s see how much their music has attempted (or succeeded) at that.

Mission Mangal

There is no mistaking Dil Mein Mars Hai being an Amit Trivedi composition – the film’s light-hearted theme song carries the composer’s trademark brand of quirk right from the get go, which, as it goes without saying, includes a fair share of déjà vu. While Benny Dayal leads the vocals with his characteristic panache, the highlight of the track is its chorus – lyricist Amitabh Bhattacharya changing the mangal in the movie’s title to mangalam and using that as a device to fashion a set of mock chants. Good use of Inapakurti D. Rao’s saxophone solos as well. While the first song is a lead-up to the mission, Trivedi’s other effort, Shaabaashiyaan has a clear sense of accomplishment with its lyrics and big anthem feel.

The composer gets one of his trusted vocal collaborators, Shilpa Rao, to lead this one and she pulls it off neatly, with ample support from Anand Bhaskar and Abhijeet Srivastava. Not a brilliant composition by the composer’s standards, but it serves its purpose. A third song titled Tota Udd comes from guest composer/lyricist Tanishk Bagchi. While the repurposing of the lines from the children’s game tota udd to suit the ‘flying’ theme of the movie is smart, the Punjabi setting sits at odds with the movie’s general tone.

It’s a catchy tune nevertheless, with an especially addictive chorus – which is slightly reminiscent of Pettai Rap from Kaadhalan/ Humse Hai Muqabla (1994) as the song hits crescendo.

'Mission Mangal' and 'Batla House' music review: Inspirational, but not memorable

Batla House

Composer Tanishk Bagchi — who’s also made a track for Mission Mangal — is a common name across a lot many albums these days. With the music for Batla House, he’s tasked with a remix of Vishal Shekhar and Dev Kohli’s 2004 hit O Saki Saki’. Excepting the original’s chorus lines, Bagchi supplies his own lyrics and melody for the rest of his track. The end result falls flat in comparison though, and even the singing – Neha Kakkar, Tulsi Kumar, B. Praak here – doesn’t quite compare with Sukhwinder Singh and Sunidhi Chauhan’s effort. The album’s second song sees another composer take a shot, Ankit Tiwari. And Rula Diya is one of Bagchi’s better compositions in a long time. Thought the melody has a familiar feel, the track is still melodious with great arrangement, especially with the incorporation of Yogesh More’s shehnai. Bagchi handles the vocals himself, alongside Dhvani Bhanushali. Rochak Kohli takes a stab at Batla House’s third song, the inspirational Jaako Raakhe Saaiyaan’. While the track’s title is a nod at Kabir’s dohe (poetry), most of the song is penned by Gautam Sharma and Gurpreet Saini. The track is quite effective, but it definitely has an undertone of the composer’s own ‘Meer-e-Karwaanfrom Lucknow Central (2017) in its percussion. Navraj Hans sounds fabulous on the track; it’s a pity we do not hear more of his vocals.

Surprisingly, there isn’t a single song in either album that can be classified as ‘patriotic’ — though both feature an inspirational song apiece.

Not that it is a shortcoming of course, but what does disappoint is the lack of a truly memorable track is either album.

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Printable version | Jul 23, 2021 3:17:25 PM |

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