'Padmaavat' album review: Music fit for a queen

Royal dance: Shreya Ghoshal’s ‘ Ghoomar ’ is an addictive track  

According to Wikipedia, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavaat makes it the seventh film that the filmmaker has scored music for. Much like ‘Tattad Tattad’ in Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram-Leela and ‘Malhaari’ in Bajirao Mastani, Bhansali creates ‘Khalibali’ for Padmaavat which in all likelihood is the song for Ranveer Singh to shake his leg to. The Arabic touches in the orchestration of ‘Khalibali’ make it a more appealing piece than the aforementioned two.

Lyricist A.M. Turaz’s lines too feature a smattering of foreign words amidst Hindi lyrics, and Shivam Pathak and Shail Hada deliver them commendably. Bhansali and Turaz do even better with the other, more exotic sounding ‘Binte Dil’ – the sultry song sounds almost like a world music piece, rather than a Bollywood song. While Arijit Singh’s Arabic modulations don’t always hit the mark, he does a wonderful job of conveying the passion in Turaz’s lines. ‘Ek Dil Ek Jaan’ is Bhansali’s offering in one of his favourite ragas (the director’s penchant for the raga reportedly stems from his favourite song as a kid being ‘Abhi Na Jaao Chhod Kar’) Yaman/Kalyani. Of course, that comes with the drawback of the song carrying a heavy hangover of Bhansali’s previous songs in the raga. A soothing listen nevertheless, highlighted by Pathak’s nuanced singing.

Holi’ is, as its title suggests, is a song linked to the festival of colour – another of Bhansali’s regular entries in his song line-up. This time he goes for a traditional folk composition though, from the Manganiyar/Langa tradition. The best thing about the song is the perennially under-utilised Richa Sharma leading the vocals, sounding as solid as ever. Shreya Ghoshal’s ‘Ghoomar’ sounds as addictive as it did the day it released (thanks largely to its elaborately choreographed video). While the singing by Ghoshal and the chorus is top notch, equally splendid is Bhansali’s orchestration dominated by the folk percussion. The instrumental overdrive towards the final minute of the song is an excellent touch, giving it a trance-y feel.

Siddharth and Garima, Bhansali’s lead lyricists for his last two movies, feature in just one song for Padmaavat – ‘Nainowaale Ne’. But that turns out to be the top song of the soundtrack. Bhansali has a fabulous melody in place for this one (that for a change does not bear any resemblance to his past songs), and Neeti Mohan sounds her finest delivering it. Equally alluring is Dhimant Varman’s sitar that dominates the backdrop (seemingly carrying shades of Raag Sarbari).

This is probably the shortest soundtrack for a Bhansali movie in a very long time, but is still largely identifiable with the filmmaker’s usual musical style. Padmaavat rates among the better albums Bhansali has delivered as composer.

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Printable version | May 13, 2021 9:22:46 PM |

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