The winter season will mark the return of brillant director Mani Ratnam. After the immense critical acclaim he received for Yuva (2004), Ratnam is back and what a comeback is he going to have. Ratnam’s next project is titled “Guru”. The huge starcast consists of Abhishek Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai, Mithun, Vidya Balan, Madhavana and Arya Babbar. Rumored to be based on the life of the late Dhirubhai Ambani, the hype and excitement for this movie is building up slowly and steadily. The music of Guru is done by musical genius AR Rahman who is once more ready to take the country’s musical charts by storm. You saw the music launch a few weeks eariler, now its time to take a look at the combination of AR Rahman and Mani Ratam, once again.
The CD cover shows Abhishek as an angry business man, with the movie’s tagline on the side. “Villager. Visonary. Winner.” The CD cover and inlays have a very rural look to them. There have been a lot of shades of brown used. It’s very well-crafted cover. The inlays show all the lyrics and some pictures. The cover also shows Aishwarya Rai looking breathtakingly beautiful in a simple look. The woman just keeps getting younger and younger!
Just by looking at the cover and reading Mani Ratnam’s and A R Rahman’s names together, you know that there will be many expectations from both, as they have delivered some legendary songs together. So, now let’s wait no more and get to the much awaited compositions.
The album starts on a very high level with “Barso Re”. The melodious voice of Shreya Ghoshal combined with the magical work of AR Rahman work together to start off the album on a high note. The quality, softness, and effectivenss of Shreya’s voice is beyond words! A few years back Shreya had mentioned it was her dream to work with AR Rahman. Her dream certainly came true, but she has also done an amazingly remarkable job. Over the years Shreya has always gotten soft love songs such as Jaado hai Nasha Hai or Piya Bole. The young crooner finally gets the chance to sing a song which is fast-paced and loud, and soft-spoken Shreya pushes the right buttons to do so! This song further establishes Shreya’s versatility and further proves that this album surely has a lot to offer! Again, Shreya carries the whole song on her shoulders and comes out as a “Guru” herself. The song is Aishwarya’s introduction song, who is looking just beautiful. That repeat button will definatly come in handy for this tune.
Next up in the album comes “Tere Bina”. This track further establishes the album! If “Barso Re” set the bar, Tere Bina exceeds it! The soulful voice of Rahman and the amazing background score just feels soothing. In fact, words cannot describe the first two songs of Guru; you have to hear them to see what the magic is all about. The song is picturized on Abhishek and Aishwarya, and judging from the trailer, they seem to be looking really good together!
Moving ahead, the third track is “Ek Lo, Ek Muft” rendered by Bappi Lahiri. This song just throws away the magic that was present in the first two songs. The flat voice of Bappi and the non-existent music just don’t gell well with the ears. The song seems to be more situational and comedic than a music chart type of song. But either way, the album moves down a notch with the song. In fact this song makes you wonder if you should even consider listening to the rest! Compared to the first two tracks, this one just seems so pathetic.
“Mayya Mayaa”, a track inspired by Arabian music brings the album back on track and recovers from the horrid “Ek Lo Ek Muft. The sensual voice of Maryem Toller and the sexy beats of Arabia make the song explode and express total sensuality. It’s no guess Mallika Sherawat will be shown gyrating to the song. Just by listening to this sensual song, it’s implied that no one could do justice to it other than Mallika. It’s a big relief that the album still has much to offer after the third track. Rahman totally redeems himself here.
Hariharan and Alka Yagnik come together to sing the duet titled “Ay Hairathe”. It’s such a relief to hear Hariharan after all these years. The singer is still in full form with the support of Alka, who just sounds so fresh and young. The flag of Guru is further held higher. This song is rumored to be picturized on the wedding of Abhishek and Aishwarya.
Unexpectedly, the next song titled “Baazi Laga” is being sung by Udit Narayan and Madhushree. The song is suited to the time period of the movie, but the song will find a hard time finding its place on the music charts, as it sounds too much like the songs from the 1980’s. But nevertheless, it’s an average track. It’s not a song you would put on repeat.
The album closes on “Jaage Hain”. A R Rahman takes up the mic along with the soft-voiced Chitra. The song is extremely slow but very fulfulling and soulful. AR Rahman and Chitra have no chesmistry together but individually are very striking. However the music is breathtaking. Again, the song is good, but not so good that you would hear it again and again.
From the seven composed tracks by A R Rahaman, 4 songs hit the bullseye (Barso Re, Tere Bin, Mayya, Ay Hairathe); 2 songs seem situtional and are just about average (Baazi Laga and Jaage Hain). The only song which brings the album down is “Ek Lo Ek Muft” Which can easily be touted as the worst track in the album. The power and effect of the other songs can forgive such mistakes. AR Rahaman is already a legendary composer, now we wish for him to take up singing as well. Now to answer the big question “Will AR Rahman take the country’s musical charts by storm?” To say the very least, yes he will. Barso Re will surely make a straight run to number one on the charts. Tere Bina seems to also be a chartbuster.
AR Rahman the genuis has done it again! Guru is definitely worth listening to if you want an album in which all the tracks are different from each other. There is never a feeling of deja vu among the album. If you’re looking for quality music and an escape from obnoxious item numbers, then Guru is a MUST LISTEN for you!