Music is the soul of Indian Cinema and like every movie is eagerly awaited for, so is the wait for its soundtrack. The soundtrack to a movie, especially in Indian Cinema, is the first glimpse of the forthcoming movie and can easily increase its chances of success or failure. That being said, it is also somewhat separated from the fate of the movie, at times being more popular than the movie itself. Here are BollySpice’s Top 10 Albums of 2009.
10. Dil Bole Haddippa
No year of music goes by without an album from the house of Yash Raj making a few waves and in 2009 Dil Bole Haddippa was that album. With Pritam in the music director’s chair and Jaideep Sahani as the lyrcist, it is no surprise that DBH made our countdown list. The brilliant rendition of the title number by Mika Singh is definitely the back bone of the album, in particular its remixed version with Sunidhi Chauhan, followed by the melodious and patriotic ‘Ishq Hi Hai Rab’. However, it’s the quirky numbers like ‘Gym Shim’, ‘Bangra Bistar’ and ‘Discowale Kisko’ that make DBH a joy to listen to. The album, simply put, is a big ball of fun from start to finish.
Another well-deserved appearance of Pritam in our countdown list is for Priyadarshan’s Billu. Pritam pressed the right commercial buttons and came up with crowd pleasers such as ‘Marjani, ‘Rockin’ ‘n’ Reelin”, and ‘Love Mera Hit Hit’. These 3 tracks’ reception was increased exponentially with the various guest appearances by Bollywood’s leading ladies, namely Priyanka Chopra, Deepika Padukone and Kareena Kappor. However, it was the sweet and melodious ‘Khudya Khair’ that is Billu‘s most prized possession. A great mix of commercial and not-so-commercial yet credible numbers make Billu one of the best albums of 2009.
8. Luck By Chance
Without any luck and definitely not by chance, Shankar-Eshaan-Loy make another appearance again on our countdown list with Luck By Chance. LBC was one such album that was not only entertaining but did wonders for the movie’s narrative and its themes. Case in point: ‘Sapno Se Bhare Naina’ so succinctly summarised the struggles of an aspiring actor in the Indian Film Industry that there was no need for pages of dialogue in the movie on that topic. On a lighter note, fans of Hrithik Roshan got to see him dance to the wonderful beats of ‘Bawre’ while Amit Paul fans got a front seat to his Bollywood debut with ‘Pyaar Ki Dastaan’.
7. 3 Idiots
Though at first glance many dismissed this Shantanu Moitra vehicle, after listening to it in light of the RajKumar Hirani’s amazing narration of the story 3 idiots, many warmed up to the soundtrack. One of the many reasons why the audiences took a shining to the soundtrack relatively late in the day is the amazingly well written lyrics by Swanand Kirkire, the full effect of which is unleashed on you during the movie. Case in point: ‘Jaane Nahin Denge Tujhe’. What was initially an overly dramatic number sung by an equally dramatic Sonu Nigam, transformed into a frustrated, tragic and emotional account of a friend’s fight for life and death. At the end of the day aal izz well for Shantanu Moitra as 3 Idiots became one of 2009 most liked albums.
6. What’s Your Rashee?
Whatever the fate of the movie maybe, it is undeniable that the talents of Sohail Sen, it’s music director, were not lost to audiences. The well penned 13 tracks of WYR were given unbelievable form and sound by Sen who captured the essence of the various women in the protagonist’s life in a way that was musically entertaining and critically commendable. It can be safely said that the movie would have had a better fate if one simply viewed the movie through the medium of its soundtrack. The album features a list of fresh vocal talents including that of Sohail Sen, another feature which makes WYR a shoe in as one of 2009’s most loved soundtracks.
5. Love Aaj Kal
Pritam has become so good at churning out chartbusters that one can safely assume he can do them in his sleep. Controversies of plagiarism aside, this man spells commercial success and Love Aaj Kal is no different. ‘Twist’, ‘Chori Bazari’ and ‘Dooriyan’ took little time in climbing the charts and making their way into our hearts. Pritam delivered the best of music aaj kal with Love Aaj Kal.
4. Delhi 6
A year in Bollywood music is incomplete without its yearly dose of AR Rahman. Rahman teamed up with Rakesh Omprakash Mehra and lyricist Prasoon Joshi once more since Rang De Basanti to give us the very amazing soundtrack to Delhi 6. AR Rahman, of course, needs no introduction and any praise or commendation is somewhat futile when it comes to this musical genius. With household hits such as ‘Maskali’ and ‘Genda Phool’, Delhi 6 was a favourite all year round despite its early release. That’s not all. Tracks such as the incredible qawali by Javed and Kailash, debutant Ash King’s veteran-like rendition of ‘Dil Gira Dafatan’, Rahman’s enchanting ‘Rehna Tu’ and a well-needed anthem for our wonderful rajdhani Delhi, the title song, all go towards the magnificence of the music of Delhi 6.
3. Dev. D
It is close to impossible to summarise the awesomeness of Dev. D. Amit Trivedi takes listeners by storm with this 18 track album that conveys emotions of every multitude, an emotional atyachaar of sorts, literally. Featuring an amazing array of vocal talent including Amit Trivedi with an equally talented group of lyricists, Dev. D is unpredictable, shocking, melodious, loud, psychotic but most of all a hell of an entertainer. No one track is superior to the other as each is a work of art on its own. In short, Dev. D is ground-breaking music.
2. Wake Up Sid
If you have not woken up to the wondrous soundtrack of Wake Up Sid, then its placement as number 2 on our countdown list should give you the push that you need to get out of bed. The dynamic duo of Shankar-Eshaan-Loy and Javed Akhtar struck gold again with this youthful album that is impressive from the get go. Guest composer Amit Trivedi’s heart warming ‘Iktara’, enchantingly rendered by Kavita Seth and Amitabh Bhattarchya is without a doubt the crowning glory of the album (and the no 1 song on our top 25 songs list). The subtle beauty and the utter freshness of ‘Kya Karoon’, ‘Life is Crazy’ and ‘Aaj Kal Zindagi’ is downright impossible to get out of your head while the title song, particularly its club mix makes you want to jump with joy.
People can easily forget that Vishal Bhardwaj, director extraordinaire is also an extraordinary music director. In 2009, Kaminey was just not one of the most credible films of the year but had a rocking and thought provoking soundtrack to match. Brilliantly composed by Vishal, aesthetically written by Gulzar with an ensemble of fantastic playback singers including Vishal himself, Kaminey is an entertaining album from the loud and crazy ‘Dhan Te Nan’ to the surprisingly entrancing title song. The two wondrous sides of ‘Pehli Baar Mohabat Ki Hai’ in form of a wedding number named ‘Raat Ke Dhai Baje’ and a romantic ballad fantastically rendered by Mohit Chauhan, reinforces why Kaminey is chosen as the best album of 2009.
The following albums did not make the final list. Nevertheless, they deserve special mention because arguably they are all equally commendable.
London Dreams is a fantastic album from the wonderful lyrical-musical team of Shankar-Eshaan-Loy and Prasoon Joshi in the same line as Rock On!! The lack of a female singer in the album may be mourned but the male talents showcased in the album are out of this world. Best Tracks of London Dreams: ‘Khawb Ko’, ‘Barso Re’, ‘Khanabadosh’, ‘Tapkey Masti’ and ‘Man Ko Aati Bhave’.
With Kurbaan, Salim-Sulaiman have undoubtedly become one of the most sort after music directors in Bollywood. In 2009, the duo wowed us with the music of Kurbaan where the brilliant compositions were equally well written by Niranjan Iyengar which captured the complex themes of the movie with utmost ease. Best Tracks of Kurbaan: ‘Kurbaan Hua’, ‘Ali Maula’ and ‘Shukran Allah’.
It was a shame Pankh only had a small number of compositions but in this case quality trumped quantity as the musical and lyrical combo of Raju Singh and Suoipto Chattopadhyay created magic with the limited number of tracks. Best Track of Pankh: ‘Jee Jala’.
Easily one of the sweetest albums of 2009, Aao Wish Karein was the musical creation of Ankur Tewari and Mike McCleary featuring 2 brilliant compositions by the very talented Xulfi. Best Tracks of Aao Wish Karein: ‘Kuch Aisa’, ‘Reh Jaane Do’ and ‘Sabse Peeche Hum Khade’.
Congratulations and a heart-felt thanks to all the composers, lyricists, performers and musicians of 2009 for giving us another brilliant year in Bollywood music!