The new thriller Anamika, starring Dino Morea, Minissha Lamba and Koena Mitra, had an impressive team for the soundtrack. With Anu Malik returning as composer after a long while, Sameer for lyrics and Shaan, Sunidhi Chauhan and Anu Malik himself lending their voices to the eight tracks, you would think this has to be good. Well, with exception of one very good song, it is only OK. It fails in that each song has lyrics repeated over and over again, with odd mixes of musical styles and it feels as if it was composed by a debut musical director and lyricist, not by the greats Anu Malik and Sameer.
Shagufta Dil and its remix are both performed by Shaan and he is in fine form. The song starts out well but then goes down from there. The background tune reminded me of many of the songs that are out now. A very zippy pop/club number with lots of electronica thrown in, it also has a bit of Spanish flavor in parts as well. The music does not seem to fit together and the only saving grace is Shaan’s gruff inflection singing Shagufta Dil. The refrain was repeated way too many times to remain interesting, and overall it is just a mess of a song. The remix is good, and has some pretty cool additions, but it is also too long.
Aayo Re begins with an unnamed female artist singing a soulful a capella section. Her voice is haunting and longing and you think, wow, this track is going be wonderful. However, about a minute into it, the song suddenly changes to a fast paced beat and it is not a smooth transition; it is very jarring. Perhaps seeing the song in the film will explain why there was such a drastic change, and what they were thinking when they composed it. The rest of the song continues with its upbeat meter that has a very peppy violin coming in every now and then. Sunidhi Chauhan does a first-rate job as she usually does singing these types of numbers. It is a good song but nothing that is spectacular. The song ends with the first singer’s voice and again it seems very out of place. The beat of the remix is even quicker and has more electronica. Because of the accelerated beat, Chauhan sounds as if she is yelling and not singing. This track is not one for your playlist in its original or remix form.
On Saath, Anu Malik takes the microphone and his voice is just not up to the task. It would have been a much better song with someone else singing and that is proven, when in the end, Sunidhi Chauhan sings some of the same lines (since the lines are repeated over and over again). She actually makes the song good. Anu Malik sounds good on the Saath lyric. This is another example of an amalgamation of too many styles that do not mesh well. There are bits of this and bits of that, and some of the bits are very cool, but none of it seems connected. For example, there are some excellent Spanish acoustic guitar riffs but they are out of place in the song. The remix is actually better, but again, you wish it were someone else signing the track. The beginning is really good and much of the guitar is taken out so it is a purer song. I would listen to this version.
Sunidhi Chauhan & Krishna are heard on Laagee Lagee and it is another track that sounds like it is from a first time composer and lyricist. Another quick number that has a club feel to it as well, it has a synthesizer doing most of the backup music and effects. The Laagee Laage stanza is repeated way to many times though both singers have great voices. The beginning instrumental section is very cool and the ending good was but the middle was only middlin’.
We finally come to Shaan singing Aashiqui, and this track is the best on the album. Aashiqui really shows off the skill of Shaan as singer, Sameer as lyricist and Malik as composer. Malik really got it right with this one! The song has a very pretty opening and it just continues to get better from there. He again mixes different styles, but it this time they blend yet accent each other. There are some incredible harmonies that are a joy to hear. Shaan’s melodious voice is perfect for the ballad. The middle section with the two acoustic guitars, though short, is very very good indeed. There is one thing out of place is the sort-of bird call whoop sound that is heard in the beginning and then again in parts of the song. However, taking that away, this song really makes the album. I have already added it to my playlist!
It feels almost blasphemous to criticize songs of a composer of Anu Mailk’s stature, but every artist has one piece that is not considered to be their best work. Anamika is one of Malik’s lesser efforts. The songs all have some great moments but he faltered all over in the synthesis. Besides Aashiqui, the album is just fair, but hopefully the songs will sound better when seen within the context of the scenes they are in.