Director Karan Johar returned to the director’s chair to bring his story of the many shades of love in Ae Dil Hai Mushkil. The film celebrates love, friendship and heartbreak as it follows the stories of Ayan, the wannabe singer played by Ranbir Kapoor, Anushka Sharma’s charming Alizeh and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan as the poet Saba. Ae Dil Hai Mushkil is the ultimate story of unrequited love… the forms it takes and the highs and lows of the characters’ lives. How the three characters’ lives intertwine and connect and how they find closure in the romantic and unromantic forms the core and the dil of this film.
To bring his movie’s music to life, Johar brought in the ever-brilliant Pritam along with the incredible lyricist Amitabh Bhattacharya. In an interesting move, the full album was not released until this week so we have heard many of the songs within the song videos and fans seriously loved them. However, we still, in most cases, only heard a part of what the track fully is. So did Pritam bring the music? We say, in most tracks, oh yes!
I and many many fans loved the title song, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, from the first notes when we heard it playing in the background of the trailer. It got even better when we heard the audio version and then hit higher on the ‘we love this song’ meter when we saw it in the video. Pritam’s composition of this song is just so perfect. The piano line grounds, supports and at the same time gives the feeling of longing in every note. The orchestration is so full of sound and emotion. Then you add in Arijit Singh’s vocals and oh the feels! He sings with such passion and pitch perfect notes. Both soft and strong, he is brilliant, one of my favorite performances from this excellent singer. This is another song by Pritam that surrounds you. I think that is one of his best attributes as a composer – you get lost inside the music and the feel of the vocals. Though it has been said and confirmed with the amazing downloads, it has to be reiterated again, Ae Dil Hai Mushkil is a triumph of a song. One of my favorites, that I wanted to hear again before it was even over. I have added this to my ‘all time best songs’ list. Bravo to the composer, the lyricist, the singer and the musicians.
Bulleya is another song we got a glimpse of and loved when we saw the video, but what is really cool about this, like most of the songs on the album, is that it plays equally as well as just a song to listen to. The song begins off with such a cool guitar groove, that I totally loved, it then morphs into a more rock beat in the guitar-line, which – rocks! The song features Amit Mishra, who sings with a smooth tone that transforms to a strong killer vocal. The addition of Shilpa Rao’s beautiful softer tones with the accompanying music adds another layer to make the song have even more depth. The music, with a Sufi essence, mixes both the hard wail of the guitar and then other times a softer line musically that so works. It all meshes and weaves to create a killer jam! As I was sitting typing as I listened, the beat had my feet dancing and certainly had me wanting to play it again. Though we have seen the video I actually can’t wait to experience this in the world of Ranbir and Ae Dil Hai Mushkil! Pritam hits it so right again!
Pritam brings another style with Channa Mereya with more of an Indian beat as the base, but it also is a ballad at its heart. Arijit Singh shines again in this lovely song. Though it may have flavors of songs we have heard before I think that is what makes it special. I loved it. You add in the visuals and it makes it even better. It is my third favorite because I think the music needed a bit more, but in an album of great tracks third is brilliant. We get an idea with the video we have seen of what is happening in the story but what happens before and what happens after that scene I think will make this song mean even more! Can’t wait to love it more.
The video for The Breakup Song has been a big hit, which I also really enjoyed but, the music…well it took a bit to grow on me. The beginning, as I listened for the review, certainly had me thinking is this really the same OST? Honestly, it had me raising my eyebrows and wanting to turn it down, but I kept going and liked it much better as it progressed. The music became a very cool percussive dance beat that fit the bill much better. The singers Arijit Singh, Badshah, Jonita Gandhi, Nakash Aziz were great. Shout out to Jonita Gandhi who sang with brilliant spicy inflection, she made the song. Badshah also killed it in the rap-flavored section. I wish the beginning that featured the odd mixing board vocal effects and the synth beats did not keep coming back in, but taking that out, it is a cool beat and certainly fit within the scene and the dance club setting. I say give it a listen, but this is one you might want to enjoy in the film.
Cutiepie has been called the filmy song of the year and watching the video you certainly see why. I loved seeing all the classic scenes… such a Karan Johar oeuvre! As a song, taking out the video, ‘Cutiepie’ has elemental classic vocals and sounds in some parts, which I really enjoyed hearing. However, the song somehow goes off the rails. The quick tempo was lively but somehow the music was not at all what I expected or actually liked that much. It seemed to produced – the song was without any depth. I wanted more full sound, more deep percussion, more bass, especially backing up the vocals by Pardeep Singh Sran, and Nakash Aziz, who are fabulous. With it being called ‘Cutiepie’, I might have missed the point, but for me this was a miss and something I would skip.
As of the writing of this review Alizeh is the only song and video I have not seen yet and I eagerly looked forward to hearing what else Pritam brought to the table. He surprised me! Another new sound with a very western bent it had a very different feel and it was so fresh. Percussive-y, ballad-y and interesting musical-y (had to keep the flow) the song is not something we have heard before. Sung by Pritam Chakraborty, Arijit Singh, Ash King and Shashwat Singh, ‘Alizeh’ was wonderful both vocally and in the musical world it inhabited. I usually have a problem with English rap in a song, but this just fit and the lyrics were just so beautifully full of poetic love and imagery. It made the song even better! I actually could have listened to even more of that rap because it was too good! Now since Anushka Sharma’s character is called Alizeh and because I loved the song I am very, very interested in seeing where this fits into the story of the many shades of love that is Ae Dil Hai Mushkil.
With an eclectic mix of songs, Pritam certainly proved once again he can create many different sounds, moods, flavors and feelings all within one album. My favorite by far is the full of sound ‘Title song’ but I also loved ‘Bulleya’, ‘Channa Mereya’ and ‘Alizeh’. This one is definitely one to add to your library!
Ae Dil Hai Mushkil hits theaters for Diwali weekend, October 28th.