Acid Factory, a new thriller opening October 9th, stars Dino Morea, Fardeen Khan, Dia Mizra, Irrfan Khan, Manoj Bajpai, Aftab Shivdasani, and Danny Denzongpa, with direction by Suparn Verma. The film is an edge-of-your-seat, twist-and-turn suspense flick with the story revealing each character through a foggy lens as they all have lost their memory – so neither the audience or the characters know who is good and who is bad. According to the music producer, the brief for the music of the film was “fast paced dark songs, songs that portrayed deceit, etc.”. To achieve this feeling, Verma had several different composers contribute to the soundtrack including Shamir Tandon, Manasai Scott, Bappa Lahiri, with a bonus track by Ranjit Barot. So do the tracks meet the brief? Read on to find out!
Yeh Jism, with music by Shamir Tandon and lyrics by Virag Mishra, does meet the brief in feeling and mood. The song begins as a ballad-ish song that has a lot going on – there was a strong hand at the mixing board – but it works and it has a sound that is out of the ordinary. Raaj has a wonderful voice with lots of emotion and great tone; loved it. I especially loved the harmonies that popped in and out. The music speeds up with a cool acoustic guitar riff and then transposes to a full-on club mix with heavy club synth beats that are super. Raaj’s “ballady” voice actually mixes with those heavy club beats, but you wish it stayed more like the beginning and the ending. Anchal Datta Bhatia is fab on her sections – she has such a brill tone and her range is awesome. It is a mix of styles, but it is a good song. I love the phrasing of the lyrics. Highlight is definitely the singers’ wonderful voices!
I really liked the opening of the Club Mix of Yeh Jism; it had a great beat. There is the requisite speeding up of tempo but it retains the terrific vocal by Raaj. This version is good too, and I liked it because it had a lot of just pure Raaj vocals without all the extras. Maybe a little to space-agey near the end, but that is me being picky. Give it a spin.
Jab Andhera Hota Hai is a version of the classic song from Raja Rani reproduced by Gourov Dasgupta and sung by Anchal Datta Bhatia, Saptak Bhattacharjee and Shweta Vijay, with lyrics by Sheliee. Again Anchal is in brilliant voice: she brings out an extra something in her sections and her talent just sings out (if you will forgive the pun). Saptak Bhattacharjee is fabulous, too. He has a deep cool tone that fits the song and like Anchal, he gives an extra something to his performance; the two of them are really wicked. The music rocks as well with a thumpin’ intricate beat full of great music that backs up the depth of the sound of the singers perfectly. This is my favorite track on the album and I turned it up to jam to it!
The gorgeous Dia Mizra is seen in the video for the Remix version of Jab Andhera Hota Hai. About her vocals on the Remix, the star told the Anchal, “I dunno if people have said this to you but you have sung this song so beautifully that I didn’t need to put any effort in the video. Your voice just made me perform. I have done some 50/60 videos but this voice of yours just made me do this. You are a rock star!” I agree! You can hear on the original version and this version that Anchal really gets inside the music and her singing makes it something more. I didn’t like Jojo as much as Saptak Bhattacharjee but still he was theek although it lost some of it’s depth. A good electronica/synth mix, the music will get them dancing in the clubs. The change ups with the extra instruments added to the beat as well. Both are worth a play with the original being a must add to your “This song jams” playlist.
Next up we have a song that was composed and sung by Manasi Scott and boy, does she excel at her profession. I loved the opening of Khatti Meethi and the beat throughout is hot! Manasi Scott has got just the energy, the inflection and the feel of the music to really get the song to groove. Loved everything about this track: lyrics (which Manasi wrote with Amitabh Bhattacharya) , inflection, music, the mix of the modern flavor with addition of the classic violins, all the vocal lines, it is all too good. But it is Manasi that makes ‘Khatti Meethi’, and you must give this one a listen! It is a lot of sounds, but it for me it was killer (no pun intended)!
Bappi Lahiri takes his turn as music director for Kone Kone Mein with Virag Mishra penning the lyrics. The track has a very Yanni-ish new age sound that I liked, especially the intro. To enhance that cool sound is the fabulous smoky voice of Vasundhara Das. You can’t imagine the song with anyone else. A very good but subtle orchestration adds to it as well. The only down side is that there is a bit too much electronic feeling to the drum and the piano was a little tinny; I think maybe old school skins and the classic ivory would have been better. I really liked this one, the mix of music is cool but it is the singer that takes the song up to the next level.
Kone Kone Mein (Lounge Kilogram Mix) is a very synth, electronic beat-filled music version without the new agey-ness of the original. I think it will play really well backing up a cool scene on screen. I enjoyed this version and can see it playing in a club while a dance floor full of people moves to the beat with the strobe lights flashing.
With lyrics once again by Virag Mishra, Raftaar is Shamir Tandon’s second track and heard again is the duo of Anchal Datta Bhatia and Raaj. The beginning sounds if you are at an auto race, and throughout you hear the electronic sound of a car racing by. An interesting mix of piano and very electronica beats, the song relies too much on what was done at the mixing board and the standard press a button to have drum kit one, synth riff 2, club beats 16 – you get my drift. It is still a good mix, but there is just no hook in the music. The best part of the song is Anchal Datta Battia’s performance. She has a great rough quality on this track and I love her deeper tones and phrasing. I wish the music backed up her and Raaj, who is also heard, a bit more. The rock guitars were very good, and I wish they had perhaps kept it simple with more pared down music. I really liked Raaj on the Raftaar refrain and the way his voice “zooped”, but overall this one is just average. In no way bad but just not “it” either.
The bonus track is Nothing Else Will Do by Ranjit Barot. Rockish in feel, it makes you think you are back in the 80’s (it reminded me of so many songs from that era) but that may be because of his guttural vocal and the phrasing. Plus, there is also a very Tina Turner-esque (really sounds just like her) back up singer that adds to that feeling and she totally rocks it. It has a great backbeat and in the refrain the music rocks for a bit but it never gets going: there is no jam and that is disappointing. I liked it for his vocal but it was missing something; it did not live up to their voices. This song should have rocked to 11 but it fell to a 7.
The music for Acid Factory is more mood setters and background, so it is not your standard Bollywood OST. Does it meet with the brief? Most definitely yes, it has that dark flavor running through every one. I think on screen this music is going to enhance what Acid Factory has in store for audiences. The one drawback is that the music relied a bit too much on the electronica standard synth beat and the mixing board, so that takes it down one notch, but the singers blow you away so that takes it back up! Overall the singers rate 4 stars but the music in some songs only a 3 and so I averaged the two to come up with my rating. For me, I will crank ‘Jab Andhera Hota Hai’ and ‘Khatti Meethi’, and give the rest a play and I think you should, too! You must give it a listen for the singers; they are outstanding, see the movie and then listen to it again!