Music

Pritam once again

Composer Pritam was on a sabbatical from music direction for over a year around mid 2014, post his work on the Akshay Kumar-starrer Holiday. When he ended that break in 2015, it was with Kabir Khan and Salman Khan’s Bajrangi Bhaijaan. Two eids later, Pritam once again joins hands with the Bajrangi team for Tubelight. And writing the lyrics for the film’s soundtrack is Amitabh Bhattacharya, with whom the composer delivered two blockbusters last year.

The composer’s tendency to include multiple versions of the same song seems to have returned in full force with Tubelight. The soundtrack has five original tunes, but ten tracks in all. There also seems to be a kind of correlation between the song lineup of this movie and the team’s previous work. While for ‘Selfie Le Le Re’ there is a ‘Radio’, the track Naach Meri Jaan’ can be classed in the same genre as ‘Kuk-Doo-Koo’. Then there is the staple melodic set of course. I could not figure out any particular difference between ‘Radio’ and its film version, even the singers are the same (Amit Mishra, Kamaal Khan). It’s a lively song that clearly draws from Pritam’s own ‘Balam Pichkaari’, the song soars during the interludes where it takes on a more pronounced European flavour, riding particularly on Jeff Taylor’s accordion and Eli Bishop’s fiddle. ‘Naach Meri Jaan’, the only single entry in the soundtrack, also belongs to familiar Pritam territory but is fun all the same. The cheerful tune is delivered very well by Arijit Singh, backed by an able chorus that also sings the occasional Kumaoni phrases to go with movie’s geographic setting. The song’s arrangement features some highland-ish incorporations even otherwise (like Naveen Kumar’s flute), adding to the track’s appeal.

Tinka Tinka’ has a pretty ordinary melody, made to sound even more so by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’s repetitive sounding rendition. It is the atmospheric backdrop that deserves your focus for its finely employed chorus and strings (interesting to note a credit for the traditional Swedish musical instrument nyckelharpa). The song becomes more world musical in its sound towards the final one minute or so, with the chorus’ outlandish chants et al. The singing by Jubin Nautiyal works slightly better for the song in the film version. The haunting arrangement suits the melancholy of ‘Main Agar’ quite well. The song would have fared even better if instead of Atif Aslam, the song had been delivered by KK who sings the faster paced and less appealing film version. The opening line of ‘Main Agar’ reappears in flute form in the soundtrack’s weakest track that incidentally also gets the most versions – ‘Kuchh Nahi’. The song does however feature some fine singing in each of the three versions by Javed Ali, Shafqat Amanat Ali and Papon.

Tubelight’s music is a good start to what appears to be a busy second half of the year for the composer.

The author writes about music on his website MusicAloud.com and curates music on Apple Music as MusicAloud


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Printable version | Sep 17, 2021 3:14:04 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/music/pritam-once-again/article19149343.ece

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