Monday, August 31, 2009


Music: Harris Jeyaraj

Soft notes backed by liberal and yet delicate strings of the guitar, singers rendering in lower scale; their high pitch notes which dangerously abuts melancholy, the chorus humming the tune in pop style or like a pathos, the saranams of the songs being just fast slow fast slow versions of the pallavi or nothing related to the mood created by the initial motifs, incomprehensible words or mere noises becoming interludes: these are the set pieces one could find in any of Harris’ compositions. With all these to his backing, Harris shells out his 29th album from his repetitive factory only to surprise us this time with the different proportion of the same ingredients.

Hasile Fisiliye (Karthik, Harini, Dr. Burn, Maya)

The adagio rendering of “Byile Bylamore”, “Hasili fisili” builds up into an allegro movement preceding the rap, with Karthik taking over with his enticing humming, complimenting the rush of feeling as expressed in the lyrics and finally Harini breaks the ice with her charming voice. The addition of Dr. Burn in this version is another highlight.

Yeno Yeno (Shail Hada, Sudha, Andrea)

“Yeno Yeno” , yet another “Blue” inspired number from Harris, has the perfect classic pop feel given by Andrea and the synchronization of her’s and Sudha’s voice, followed by the MJ inspired rap and backed by chorus towards the end has top notch sound editing.

Dammaku (Benny Dayal)

The beautiful mouth organ introducing us to this number and the protagonist in turn with this song breaks into a rhapsody, preaching us the MGR-Kanadhasan principles, but Benny with his joyous modulations, especially “rasa vantha lesa pada” makes you appreciate this number, a better attempt from Harris in terms of intro songs.

Varayo (Chinmayee, Unni Krishnan)

The melody of the Piano which broaches us into the world of tender love in the form of Chinmayee’s voice backed by guitar and piano, ‘Varayo’ flows blandly until Unni attempts at singing high notes in a whisper, introducing ‘r’ and ‘z’ to the words, especially during the crescendo. The cello which sweeps us off the feet with its tragic sound and then the increasingly intensified cry in the form of opera which falls sharp at the coda, all backed by the piano is very exhilarating.

Dekho Dekho (Suvi, Sandhya, Sri Charan)

An attempt at depicting the cultural differences, Dekho a reminiscent of Samurai, Arasatchi, Ghajini, is a cacophonous collection of rap, pop and Indian classical, which could have worked if not for the poorly written carnatic notes.

Maasi maasi (Mano, Mega)
The unbearable African sounds and arrhythmic two syllable note sung by Mano, concoct into ‘Maasi Maasi’ a reminiscent to his ‘Muquala Muquabula’ and also ‘aatama therotama’. This African style song does have great usage of drums.

Harris does have gone for innovative usage of instruments and also succeeded to a certain extent in fusion, the highlight of this album which has poor lyrics. The irritating two syllable alliteration (wannabe) still continues in this outing as well and yet the change from feminish male singers who sing only in one style is a relief and that does the trick.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Memoir - Madras

Date: Tue, Aug 11, 2009 at 12:12 AM

Holes and more holes, being dug on the surface of the city to change its face once and for all in the form of Metro rail system and the numerous flyovers, shows us how the city is adapting and expanding, more so rapidly – recently. While the infrastructure facelift seems to be order of the day certain ideas aren’t exactly fruitful- especially some flyovers, admitting to the fact of not considering the complete makeover plan of the city for all the chips and chisels to fall in place. Infrastructure development also includes water system which has till now only been implemented as short term schemes viz; the cleaning of ponds. What we need is a concatenated water system that was in place before modernization (or encroachment?). Every year during the Madras week tabloids post pictures of the past Chennai, a Chennai where people traveled on rivers called coocum and adayar – now an open drainage system, a Chennai which had a zoological park near Central Station – now a place for stage shows if not a stadium for sport, a Chennai which was greener and calmer. Maybe of the changes had to happen as the time changes, but why not retain the greenery for our sake.

Typically Chennai

Date: Mon, Aug 10, 2009 at 11:47 PM
Typically Chennai

The bustling T.Nagar & Pondy Bazaar adjunct to it, bathed with concomitant aroma of new clothes and the Mount road is what modern Chennai is all about. People flock to a Spencers or a Richie street from different part of the state and other states either for the pleasure of witnessing the "out of reach" or getting a brush with the latest in technology, while others push through the crowds of sathya bazzar and Ranganathan street or the platform shops of pondy bazaar to bicker with and win over the seller for an invaluable amount. While (window) shopping proves to be full time occupation for the Chennai lads, landmarks like CCD, Barista and Mocha offers place to dawdle while extracting everything from your pockets. Then again there is the ever inviting breeze of the Marina condiment with the spicy bajjis which will always remain a landmark for all. But the biggest of them all which has been satisfying the thirsts of the chennaiites are the movie halls that too with the advent of multiplexes like the Satyam and Inox. They offer a big package auxiliary to the big picture on screen which has been irresistible till now.

Better my city - Chennai

Date: Mon, Aug 10, 2009 at 11:04 PM

The two most abominable things about Chennai are private transportation and drainage. While the former robs out of the bourgeois, the latter takes its own route into the streets and has annihilated the rivers and ponds out of the map. Though the government should be held accountable for this, the irresponsible disposal of trash, reflects on the people who make this city happen. Path of the rivers now find plastic forming the boundary for the open drainage system blocked by illegal raisings. At the time when contagious diseases caused by lack of cleanliness are increasing, the latest being swine flu, people have to adapt themselves to cleaner habits. Next time when you go out make sure you dispose the unwanted into a bin than in the middle of the road through the window of your car or on the road-sides and especially beaches and other public places. As for as autos are concerned, when the government transports are becoming more and more friendlier than some guy who charges equivalent to reach moon for taking you to the next neighborhood, people should use them often. It’s about time we chennaities make an impression by reducing our “foot print”.

Aayirathil Oruvan

Date: Tue, Jun 16, 2009 at 6:27 PM

Film: Aayirathil Oruvan

Music: G.V.Prakash Kumar

The fifth outing of Selvaraghavan has G.V.Prakash Kumar at the helm of the music stable. When it comes to Selva’s film the soundtrack usually has his stamp all over more than the music director’s with the songs expressing the emotions and status of the characters or used as a tool to move the story forward. Great amount of importance is usually given to the orchestration which is used to express the body language of the character or a change of phase. Thus the tracks usually have a story to tell supported immensely by lyrics resulting in a musical of sorts which is what Indian films were all about. Yuvan usually plays around the concept commercializing the songs but GV here has stayed true to the theme and it has come out enchantingly.

Maalai Neram
(Andrea Jeremiah, G.V.Prakash Kumar)

A song on the realization of love after separation, “Maalai Neram” is Indi-pop to the core with the melodious flow of guitar in the background. Supported by Selvaraghavan’s lines which are very fresh yet simple, Andrea renders a clean number bringing out the subtle changes in the mood that her character transcends. The sudden guitar notes that come as the interludes hammering the swift flow of the tune could have been avoided.

Oh Eesa-Club mix by Bigg Nikk

It’s a ready made fast food kind of remix dished out which relays on Naveen’s flute to get the haunting feel while highlighting the orchestra of the original topped with standard sounds that one could hear in a remix number.

Un Mela Aasadhaan
(Dhanush, Andrea Jeremiah & Aishwarya Dhanush)

Falling in the lines of a typical Yuvan number, especially of “Adada” from ‘Sarvam’, “Un mela aasadhaan” is a song about the confrontation of the intoxicated three principle characters relating to love, explicitly demarked by clever lyrics and the slang of rendering them. The Arabic influences in the sound do bring about the drowsiness the song is set upon followed by the haunting effect while the mythologically philosophic lines are rendered. Danush and Aishwarya- the voice of Reema Sen are at ease here with Andrea pitching in.

Indha Paadhai
(G.V.Prakash Kumar)

A song portraying an optimistic sailor on cruise, ‘indha paadhai’ is a western sea number which delineates more into details like bringing out sounds of the ocean especially the violin and opera depicting the waves but concentrates less on the actual song that the song becomes a rhetoric rendering of a majestic sailor. The notes of the guitar seem to have a great influence of “yaar iravanai” number from ‘Ooram po’.

Oh Eesa-Composer's mix
(Karthik, Andrea Jeremiah & chorus)

The composer’s mix of a spiritual song about Govinda, “oh Eesa” a song depicting the quest by the principle characters, sets up a puzzle-made more effective by the piano notes at the beginning, with the lyrics by Selva and Andrea first praising at length about Shiva and ends with seeking help from Vishnu. The ancient sound coupled by the electric guitar enhances the overall effect of this groovy number.

Celebration of Life

As the title suggest this instrumental attempt at portraying the celebration of life. It starts of with slow invocation which transcends into various forms of haunting notes played magnificently in flute by Naveen and backed by apt orchestration.

The King Arrives
(Neil Mukheriee, Madras Augustin Choir)

This instrumental begins with a typical ancient court room entry tune for the king and shifts to present day entry background score for the hero in the form of heavy guitar and drums while interspersed with church Choir.

(P.B. Srinivas, Bombay Jayshree & Chorus)

A haunting devotional song pleading to Lord Siva more in the form of a chant, “pemmanae” is in line with illayaraja’s thiruvasagam score. Vairamuthu’s soulful lyrics sung in a majestic manly voice by Bombay Jeyshree and backed by Srinivas is apt. The unique style of chanting ‘om’ increases the eeriness of this number. The scary backing vocals supported by great orchestration enhance the spirituality level that the number carries.

Thaai Thindra Manne-Classical Version
(Vijay Jesudas)

Arguably the most disturbing song of this album, “thaai thindra manne” as the line implies is an assault by a King on his land which then turns into cry by him at the state of his people post the land being devastated. The orchestration which includes the near extinct rudra veena and traces of yali, stays true to the chola period. Vijay Jesudas is simply outstanding in rendering the lyrics of Vairamuthu depicting the soberness of the king while maintaining his kingly attitude.

Thaai Thindra Mannae
(Vijay Jesudas, Nithyasree Mahadevan, Shri Krishna)

Another version of “thaai thindra mannae” has a female teasing the king after his downfall. It also has an interesting telugu based dancing conversation between the female and another person increasing the puzzle the song carries. The song starts with the damaru sound playing as a background which then leads to the best part of the song when the king cracks down into a curse as to why rule a kingdom that is ruined, where the orchestration highlights the significant lyrics and enhances the song to scary heights with the sound of om as the base symbolically depicting the rudra thandavam.

A lot of research has been done to create the sound of the movie which has various phases. Na.Muthukumar’s absence doesn’t make a big difference as Selva steps in more perfectly. Only the person who had created the character knows well how they will feel and that shows in his lyrics. Andrea, the find of the album can give Bombay jeyshree and the north Indian imports run for their money with her not so bad pronunciation and clean singing. Comparison surely arises with the music on a whole as Yuvan had till now given Selva the apt sound for the mood he wanted to create. But this soundtrack shouldn’t be compared to Selva’s earlier ventures owing to the unusual genre the music is catering to that of spirituality and war of the Chola dynasty influenced by the kalingas, pirates, archeological expedition and finally three varied expressions of love. Aayirathal Oruvan’s soundtrack is one among the thousand that stands tall amidst the thousand.


Date: Thu, Apr 9, 2009 at 10:30 AM

The instant I intend to put a mark on this scrap, random images come through my mind- representing emotions, that I might never comprehend; emotions that I went through with, for and because of someone.

It started off with a small favour that I thought would do for a senior: should thank vinod for showing me the girl who keeps her foot only at home and college campus. Friendship might start from unknown quarters, and thus started an emotional roller coaster which has its ups and downs and not to forget the u-turns; a friendship that grew step by step as we took each step to reach home. The vulnerable age helped nurture the relationship with the meaningless flirts, unbearable mokais and remarkable compliments: how can I forget one of the best testimony I received in orkut. The age of orkut and yahoo shifted to sms’ and phone calls. Life I guess is a wave form and we were reaching the crest then: what with the movie outings, frequent visits to home, jobless conversations, songs and movie transfer to recollect a few. Someone told me boys and girls will always have rows no matter how socially compactable they are regardless of the understanding of each other. Blame it as error, irresponsible act or like I term it unknown mistake our relationship reached the trough soon only to rise above again.

In my understanding, I term you as an understandable mystery aka the ocean– mystery because you are calculative: you do things based on what you need; not a measure either way, bordering never outgoing for nothing. Like the ocean, which creates storms at the top and is cool underneath, underneath your cool carefree dudettes image there is present multiple layers, of which I cant forget your sadness coming out of your image on missing a friend. I also experienced your helping nature when you invited me to HSB. Having seen that, I found that, there are many other facets too, like your skill at artwork, painting, and business. In all this, the way you maintain your cool, regardless of the results which might come either way should be appreciated.

And thus I re-lived those years- those moments and I hope you will too, no matter how bad my writing is because, I now believe this book is meant to speak to the heart.

Modern B'day

Date: Tue, Mar 24, 2009 at 11:03 PM

For no reason the birth of a person is celebrated with grandeur across globe. Modern day b’day implies; burnt pockets of designer attires, gifts at midnight parties, establishment of love, showing off status and the list goes on. The hoopla for b’day is a month long affair comprising of three phases.

The pre-b’day phase is the happiest of the lot, with imaginations going wild as to who will do what for you. While the level of expectations on the loved ones reaches new heights, a special track runs on the mind as to how will “that” special person surprise you, and if not into relationship how to vow that person on that day.

The D-day begins at midnight-cell phone time, with the network fighting out to give the first connection and the winner declared the new best friend for the coming year. Not trusting the network, some even turn up at your place for the cake smashing ceremony followed by the religious event called b’day bumps. With the clich├ęd lines rendered and sleep visited by, the real day begins with gifts and wishes pouring in. It’s a day were you paint the town red with the money collected from relatives you never cared to visit any other day in the year.

The most interesting part is the post-b’day syndrome. It’s the phase where you show your attitude towards the “withholders”. It’s also here that you realise whom you miss and who loves you, in short understand emotions better.

While this is the standards of the b’day month, some really use this occasion to do something worthwhile, like going to an orphanage or any other help centre and do what they can in their own small way and give them moral support.

So (sorry guys) if you are going to celebrate a day just because you were born on that day, think again, because birth is old news; add beauty to that special day, reinvent that day in your own way and if possible bring meaning to it.

“It’s what you do that defines you and not what you are” C.Nolan

My views on NXg

Mon, Mar 9, 2009 at 2:50 AM

The talented next generation is a care-free generation which when kindled, comes up with unique things that amazes the rest. I feel, NXg has been able to cultivate interest in us in some field or the other. It gives us opportunity to utilize our freedom of expression, that too for 750rs if it’s worth reading. NXg has opened me to various topics, various styles of writings which will always be an influence for me. What intrigues me though is, why does only those reviews of films are published which are similar to that which comes in cinema plus, even if the latter is at bad taste. It would be better if this portal becomes a full-fledged forum at least in the net and then awards can be given to the best article of the week according to the viewership to promote the forum and increase the standards.

Garbage Dumping

Date: Mon, Mar 9, 2009 at 2:48 AM

While a flat was being constructed, they had dumped rubbish at a corner near my house. My street occupying typical Chennai people, started using that corner as a dumping yard. In matter of weeks, the garbage piled up, threatening to beat coovum river with its fragrance. I, who was a silent spectator till then, went for action. Armed with a shovel, I started removing the garbage. Few responsible citizens then joined me to cleanup the area while the whole street saw us do this. I saw in their eyes regret. Now my street has only one dumping place- the common dustbin

Tips of Recession

Date: Mon, Mar 9, 2009 at 2:47 AM

Version 1:

Tips to overcome recession:

*Apply for whatever company that comes in google related to you field by all means or at least be aware of vacancies and immediately apply for it. There are websites which are available for this purpose.

* If that sounds tedious, then better start preparing to crack GRE or GATE, or better apply for universities which doesn’t need them.

*If you are a practical person, then start learning the softwares that are used in your field or better join as apprentice in a small concern or go for training in companies or attend workshops.

-by a final year student who is contemplating as to which tip to follow.

Version 2:

Like every student who got into engineering in 2005, I too dreamt of getting placed in a core company by now. But then recession came and I like most of the to-be engineers are at wits end. While some, who had planned to do higher studies beforehand are better off now searching for universities, we are the unprivileged as we haven’t yet cracked the three letter word or the four letter word that gains us entrance to these universities. Thus we have the options of searching for the elusive job or prepare for these entrance exams or honing our engineering skills by learning software, training in industries and attending various workshops.

Version 3:

Recession has put most of the to-be engineers like me at wits end. While some, who had planned to do higher studies beforehand are better off now searching for universities, we are the unprivileged as we haven’t yet cracked the three letter word or the four letter word that gains us entrance to these universities. So we are left with only three options: search for the elusive job, prepare for those entrance exams or honing our engineering skills by learning software, training in industries and attending various workshops.

Mangalore and indian culture

Date: Mon, Mar 9, 2009 at 2:42 AM

Indian culture has always been partial to women. This is also the case for Goddess of the world’s oldest religion. Having put a veil on the women of this society for eons, the men are now struggling to come to terms with what a liberal woman does, be it right or wrong. And when it is wrong, the men are vehemently coming down on the women. Mangalore incident is a typical example of that. This incident puts to light the chauvinistic attitude of the men following the culture, which hasn’t been modified to adapt with time

Letter in Requisition on a Special Day

Date: Sun, Mar 8, 2009 at 12:40 AM

The world wakes up to yet another of its uncomprehended day; a day that so happens to be the women's day- a day which might for some mean that women will celebrate freedom this day, a day when volcano outside the planet was discovered, the day when Suez canal was reopened, the day when Russia felt Rock. so much can happen in a day which for some is just an another day while for some it means a lot. A day has lot of history and unknown future- interestingly it only has 24 hours which can only be felt in the present. For a selected few, this day represents an event to be happy. happy they are because they are cast by a charm. Happy they will be for they want the charm to stay on. So on this day take the pledge that you will increase the strength of the selected few in turn make everyone happy.

Messiah of Music

Date: Fri, Jan 23, 2009 at 11:37 PM

In the era of Super stars, one can only see this amount of claps and whistles when Super Star's name appears on screen; one can only see fans jump into frenzy when a super star's song come on screen. One man has changed it all; people throng to theatres to watch him cast magic over them with every movie of his. Called the Mozart of Madras, he has become the Messiah of Music, not because he is sent by God, but because he creates music that reaches the inner soul. A man whose only mission is music, has created history not only in music but everything around it; from breaking religious divide and shattering cultural barriers to bridging unknown gaps, he has achieved so much. The ambassador of several causes is truly the ambassador of music to many; for unlike others as he grows he has made everyone grow with his music whilst his music grows on us like a slow poison. Not only has he touched several hearts, he has kindled every heart through almost all the emotions he has captured through his music. He has made us cry, made us smile, feel pain and even made us to be proud citizens of this nation. The man who has created countless benchmarks, the man who is an inspiration to others, the man who is the present address for the nation in the world arena, the man who honors awards is A.R.Rahman.

An entity called God

Date: Fri, Jan 23, 2009 at 8:06 AM

Music is the most powerful way to express. It has destroyed empires, empowered minds, but most importantly made people think. We, of all the people know what music means: a symbol of and for everything. Believed to be created by God himself to reach Him, music has catapulted many into doing the unthinkable. Science accepts the existence of something only after expressing the unknown in terms of the known in a well known equation. When one is yet to know what is unknown how one can believe. Science accepts that music can do wonders to a person. It ascertains that music can touch the brain like no other thing known does, thus creating an ambiguity. When ambiguity prevails, questions do arise. The questions increase when the ambiguity is acknowledged. Music acts as a slow poison which intoxicates the mind; it teaches you, it entertains you, it inspires you and most importantly it surprises you. Music thus is a driving force. While modern belief falsely portrays God as the magician, scholars have always portrayed God as someone or something which is beyond the control. Who advises the mind to be calm when it hears a nightingale? Science says frequency does the trick. But how are all these designed? Theist jump into conclusion that the unknown, the beyond control element as God. Mind needs reasons; reasons are born only when there are unknowns. Music can only be music if it's created from the sub-conscious mind. Sub-conscious mind is something which is out of control. Then is sub-conscious mind God? If someone controls the sub-conscious mind will he become God? Is music God? Is nature God? Science accepts creation is involuntary; how a creation is created is still unknown. If this unknown is solved then God is solved. But how do you know it's solved even after solving it?

Rainy Days

Date: Wed, Dec 3, 2008 at 9:05 AM

Rainy days are the best days in a year. They are the days when kids who are usually glued to the idiot box suddenly show keen interest in physics: one can never miss the sight of kids testing the law of buoyancy. The application of science doesn't end here; the teenagers try to adapt their bikes which were built to pierce through the opposing wind into a machine which pierces through the water dividing them like how Moses divided the sea. They are the days when parents stop children from going to school. They are the days when the exams you haven't prepared for gets postponed. They are the days when suddenly everyone realizes that, the government didn't do much to avoid artificial ponds being created out of sewage. They are the days where people get to travel in boat. They are the days where relief funds worth more than the amount need to stop the damage being distributed. Finally they are the days when families sit together in a room around a candle seeing each other's faces for the first time in months.

Mumbai Attack

This was published in Nxg - The Hindu

Date: Tue, Dec 2, 2008 at 11:04 PM

The Mumbai massacre was clear evidence to inept security system in our country. How else could such high end weaponry have been brought in to these places without being noticed? Everyone who had the authority to stop the attack are now pointing fingers towards each other clearly depicting how much they care for the people they are supposed to serve. The country needs to rethink its strategy against terrorism and take up stern steps to ensure the development of an indigenous system for our security. But what we need at present is a clear filtration technique to discriminate the hoaxes from true information because after every attack we face in this nation a report comes that the authorities had neglected the warning.


Date: Thu, Nov 27, 2008 at 12:33 AM

Film: Ghajini
Music: A.R.Rahman

Guzarish (Javed Ali, Sonu Nigam)

The song of the album, Guzarish has got great fusion of mandolin and the electronic sound of the keyboard followed by Sonu's enchanting humming. The use of electric guitar as background is shear intelligence. Javed treats our ears by singing those complex notes in an elegant manner.

Aye bachu (Suzanne)

Suzanne starts of great with the threatening lyrics but slips a bit while rendering "jhoom le jhoomjhama" mainly due to out of sync note and lyrics there. Apart from that part this all girl band kind of song packs in all the rock needed to make the song enjoyable.

Kaise mujhe (Benny Dayal, Shreya Ghosal)

A typical high pitched Rahman number we often listen rendered competently by Benny, unfortunately after Shreya joins him one would feel he could have done better. Was it because he sends out so much air while singing? Though not a great song mainly due to the lyrics, it sure is soothing to the ears.

Behka (Karthik)

Rahman at his experimental best has tried to fuse modern day Jazz with hip hop here. This funky number has the most entertaining yet romantic lyrics in this album which has been rendered sincerely by Karthik especially the finale. In the era of plagiarism, it is encouraging to see Rahman mention in the CD that he has licensed some sample tunes for using in this song.

Latoo (Shreya Ghosal)

Rahman plays to the gallery and how he does that in style can only be known only after hearing the song. Shreya sings with great zeal and carries a punch in her diction adding to the fun factor. One can feel her enjoying herself while singing. The Punjabi flavour adds variety to this great song.

Kaise Mujhe(Instrumental)

If anyone was not happy with the original version, this instrumental will more that satisfy them. Great orchestration especially when the tune is being played in flute and piano. The humming by chorus elevates the beauty of the song.

After four big hits this year, Ghajini is the first album for Rahman in a masala entertainer after a long time. The songs of this album do take time to sync in even by Rahman standards (which usually needs 2-3 times listening) but carry the Rahman stamp all over even while he tries the Pritam and Vishal Shekar style in Latoo. An album worth listening to for the variety it provides.

Rating: 3/5

Obama' Victory

This was published in Nxg - The Hindu

Date: Wed, Nov 5, 2008 at 9:48 PM

From Obama's victory, one can't but assume that the Americans have indeed evolved from being racist. But have they really? Was it really the reason for his victory? Americans have only chosen him for McCain, as the latter promised to follow the footsteps of the now infamous Bush. But having chosen, it paves way for racism to be shown the door soon. Though his decision to cut on outsourcing is alarming, India is not under any threat because what he can possibly do is give incentives for job creation in America while tax benefits for All-American company is not remotely possible.


Date: Tue, Oct 21, 2008 at 12:44 AM
Movie: Yuvvraaj

Music: A.R.Rahman

It is always difficult to review an ARR musical when he is in full form. Because with so much layers forming different textures the songs might leave us without words. Yuvvraaj manages to do that to a great extent. Now to the songs

Main hoon Yuvvraaj
(Salman Khan with the 5th of Beethoven)

Salam backed by wonderfully played fifth of Beethovan, speaks about his character in this introductory track which explains his arrogant character both with music and words.

Tu mera dost hain
(Benny Dayal, Shreya Goshal)

The violin mixed with opera kind of voice followed by another note in the violin itself proves this song is going to rock. Benny then takes the song to the next level with his wonderful singing. But wait Shreya Goshal comes as an angel and transports us into another with liberal help from apt lyrics. The string instruments simply amaze us in this song. Watch out for the marvelous ending note by Shreya in this song.

Shano Shano
(Sonu Nigam, Srinivas, Karthik, Timmy,Sunaina, Vivianne, Tina)

A hip-hop style disco song which is laced with an electronic feel, this song has wonderful sound arrangement. But the problem with the song is the enthusiasm is not felt throughout and the fault is not with the singers; maybe the tune shouldn’t have been indianised in-between. Look out for the haunting rendering of ‘Shano’ in the song- simply amazing.

Tu muskura
(Alka Yagnik, Javed Ali)

Another master-piece, this song also starts of with violin notes similar to the one in ‘Tu mera dost hain’. The tune itself is a continuation of that song without resembling it. Alka and Javed give full justice to this soothing number. This song too has a great finale.

Mastam Mastam
(Sonu Nigam, Alka Yagnk, Naresh Iyer, Benny Dayal)

Very energetic song, sung with great fun and love by Sonu. Alka brings the needed grace and beauty to the tune. The instruments and additional sounds play a major role is bringing alive the enthusiasm especially the roaring of lion; after a long time organ has been used to its fullest strength here.


Following the wonderful beginning, Srinivas completely takes over this soft number with passionate singing. The background helps him set the mood for the song which will be played again and again by people who are down.

Dil Ka Rishta
(Sonu Nigam, Roop Kumar Rathod. A.R.Rahman)

The best song in this album in terms of depth in instruments and conceptualization, Dil Ka Rishta completely sweeps us over with its marvelous composition and great symphony. It is very difficult to place it in a particular genre provided the varying style of singing and notes in the background. Sonu and Roop Kumar are at their best while A.R.Rahman is simply great in his potpourri style singing. It can easily become the song of year beating ARR’s earlier contenders.

Manmohini Morey
(Vijay Prakash)

Relatively unknown singer, Vijay completely surprises us first with his baavam. Before the song ends one surely wants to bow down in front of his talent to sing these complex notes with such beauty-“vaa! Ustad” The electronic feel given as background is the icing in the cake.

Shanu- Remix by Krishna Chetan
(Ember )

Surprisingly an ARR number that is better in the remix version. Ember brings in the much needed style to this song. The additional sounds provided here are simply wonderful; a number sure to be played in the clubs across the nation.

ARR has gone for complete experimentation in this album keeping in mind the demand of the script. Even the situational songs which usually are below average sound refreshing here. A must listen album for all lovers of music.

Varanam Aayiram

Date: Sun, Sep 28, 2008 at 11:18 PM
Varanam Aayiram

Music: Harris Jeyaraj

Adiye kolluthe(Krish,Beny,Sruthi)

Literally killer of a song to kick start the album. The powerful lyrics blending with different moods of the guitar makes the listeners shake their legs for the rocking tune. Krish with the feminine husky voice and Sruthi with full open throat are marvellous.

4/5 stars

Nenjukul peidhiudum(Hariharan,Devan,Prasanna)

No singer in the recent past has sung with so much passion and love as Hariharan does in this song. Thamarai is brilliant with the unusual and yet contemporary words. The soft flow provides a soothing feel throughout.

4/5 stars

Yethi yethi(Beny,Naresh,Solar Sai)

Muthukumar proves it's his forte with the line "Raja nan raja". This fun song having energetic vocals has an interesting flow in the instruments arrangement, with drums, guitar and clapping sounds taking turns to overwhelm us.

3.5/5 stars


A breezy romantic number rendered softly by the lead singers, "Mundhinam" is backed by beautiful lyrics. Naresh and Prashanthini's voices supported by the guitar gives a wonderful listening experience.

4/5 stars

Oh! Shanthi shanthi(Clinton,Charan)

The faster version of "Nenjukul peidhiudum", "Oh! Shanthi shanthi" has Clinton giving the song a classy touch. Charan does full justice to the tune. The guitar takes the center stage again here.

3/5 stars


Though a very good attempt, the flat composition doesn't sound appealing. There seems to be a random shift in mood from fun to sorrow very often, which hampers the flow of the song.

2.5/5 stars

Annal mele(Sudha Ragunathan)

The song completely belongs to Sudha Ragunathan. Harris has opted for subtle sounds for the song completely letting the vocals take the center stage. The intelligent lyrics which carry with it an old flavor add to the USP of the song. This song is certainly a fitting way to end the album on a high note.

4/5 stars

Though most of the songs have guitar as the base, they represent various moods and situations, catering to different tastes. Harris scores full marks with his wonderful sound engineering skills. To sum up Varanam Ayiram is an album that should not be missed.

Verdict: 4/5 stars


Music: Harris Jeyaraj

Ada dada

Composed by reducing the tempo of the song “arakonathil arambam” of ‘Arasatchi’ and fusing it with rap, this song sung by premji has nothing new to offer.
Can Bombay Jeyshri sing only in this style? Or is it Harris’ proven inability to extract talent? This song sounds every bit like “sakiye” of ‘Dhaam Dhoom’. The sadness in the song is so sober that, it irritates the listener at one point; so does the Chinese like humming.

En anbe

Just because Harris composed an original tune for the movie ‘Munna’, why are we given the same tune time and again? Sadana Sargam takes you to heaven the same way she did with “manasa” the original version. The fusion between guitar and piano and later with drums is gratifying to say the least.

Ivan udaiyum

Supposed to be the introduction number for the protagonist of the film, the song is similar to ‘oru mugamo’ of “Bheema”. Hariharan tries to save the below average composition at vain.

Pal papali

The song starts off like “vadiyama jakama” of ‘Thirumala’ and then shifts to “edhuku pondati” of ‘kizhuaku chemayile’ for the two saranams. It’s another ‘why should I listen to this song?’ number from Harris.

Harris Jeyaraj in his silver jubilee album has become nostalgic than usual, as a result keeps on revisiting his previous compositions often. Recording style and mixing has always been Harris’ forte and he proves that here too with soft sounds. But are they enough reasons to hear songs which come with a big question mark over their authenticity and some irritating tunes accompanied by sounds?

Verdict: 1 ½ stars.


Date: Tue, Jul 15, 2008 at 11:46 PM
Film: Saroja
Music: Yuvan Shankar Raja

(Haricharan, Naveen, Rahul Nambiar)

Yuvan has gone for heavy mixing of his past compositions in this song. The song starts like “kannai vitu” and shifts to “yededho” both from ‘Pattiyal’. He has also used “ayiram jannal vidu” of ‘Vel’ at parts. The instruments are the standard ones we hear in a song based on friendship. On the contrary the song has a breezy and soothing feel attached to it, which makes it hum able.

Kodana kodi.
(Mohammad Aslam, Ranina, Kavi)

Heavy mixing of tunes continues to this number as well. This song is based on “Cheli chamaku chamaku” of ‘Adavari Matalaku Ardhale Verule’. The instrument arrangements and notes are similar to what was used for “Billa”. The tune also reminds us of various Illayaraja’s compositions. But the energetic punch given to the song seems to have done the trick. It easily becomes the pick of the album.

Nimirndhu Nil
(Shankar Mahadevan)

It reminds us of various songs of Yuvan. The orchestration is also nothing to rave about. On can’t find any reason to like this number.

My Life

Though a decent effort, the authenticity of the composition remains a big question. The sound quality is very poor as well.

Aaja Meri Soniye
(Vijay Jesudas, S.P.B.Charan, Prem G Amaran)

One of the saturated tunes of Indian music industry has been used here. The lyrics are very ordinary as well. Nevertheless the song carries a melodious feel which makes it passable.

Cheeky Cheeky
(Yuvanshankar Raja, Matilda, Nirdhiya)

Heavily inspired by various English albums, the psychedelic sounds mixed with futuristic sounds, used in this song leave an impression.

Yuvan as usual has been inspired by various albums to create the audio track of Saroja. Few songs do strike a cord with the listener. But it is not enough to create a worthy album, especially when the authenticity of those songs remains an unanswered question.

Verdict: 2 stars. (For the humming factor the songs has with it.)


Date: Sun, Jul 13, 2008 at 12:01 PM
Music: A.R.Rahman

"Taxi Taxi"
Singers: Benny Dayal, Blaaze, Viviane Chaix and Javed Ali. Lyrics: Blaaze, Na Muthukumar, Viviane Chaix

Rahman brings us the song of the year in the form of Taxi. It's a 'crazy frog' meets our very own 'bling linga ling' song, which surprisingly has wonderful lyrics, very rare to find in a fast number. Instrument arrangements and programming helps raise the bar for this marvelous number. Even though other singers have done well, Viviane simply makes us frenzy with her voice modulation.

Singers: Madhushree, A R Rahman, Hentry. Lyrics: Vaali.

Faintly similar to the song 'Uyire en uyire' of Thottijeya at parts, this song has everything that a melodious number should have: sweet humming, wonderful chorus, great vocal, soft notes in piano all accompanied by charming lyrics. But the spark is missing somewhere. Nevertheless it's a soft number which soothes you.

"I Miss You Da"
Singers: Chinmayi, Indai Haza. Lyrics: Na Muthukumar

Rumored to be picturized on futuristic New York, the song is laced with sounds depicting it. Though a good number, it doesn't take your hand to the repeat option. It is one of those songs, which is meant for the visuals; on the whole a haunting futuristic number.

Singers: Benny Dayal, Chinmayi. Lyrics: Pa Vijay

Based on life in the streets of hyderabad, this song composed for the movie "Meenaxi" is borrowed here. Sadly it's used a peppy love song. Yet it's a very entertaining number with lot of layers showing different facet each time you listen to them. The dominance of instruments does bother the listener at times.

Singers: Krish, Naresh Iyer. Lyrics: Na Muthukumar

The word 'elay' rendered in typical village slang of the south with the backdrop of cowboy style instrument arrangement itself shows the novelty of this song. Vocals are very effective especially when they sing 'mossa mossanu valandhu vittom'. It's without any doubt Muthukumar is the star of the song with his wonderful lyrics. The guitar and violins complement them beautifully.

"Naan Epoudhu"
Singers: Reena Bharadwaj. Lyrics: Pa Vijay

Another song used from the movie "Meenaxi"; Naan epodhu is based on a Rajasthani folk. Reena's voice is a pleasure to hear. But the synthetic enhancement of vocal instead of enhancing the feel only dampens it. Thankfully it is compensated by the innovative sounds.

Each song is completely different from other, representing various moods. If one dismisses the fact that two songs are not fresh compositions, it will surely be the album of the year. Even though it cannot be declared an enthralling album, it never stops exciting you. That is the Rahman magic and it hasn't dimmed all these time.

Rating: 3 ½ stars/ 5.


Published in Nxg-The Hindu

Date: Mon, May 26, 2008 at 12:25 AM
Film: Ada

Music: A.R.Rahman

Hawa sun
(Sonu nigam, Alka yagnik)

Resembling 'udhaya' of "Udhaya", the soft tune carries a heard before feel.

(Sonu nigam, Alka yagnik)

Everything about the song seems to be the reworking of 'vaaji' of "Sivaji".

(Sunidhi Chauhan, Sonu Nigam)

A typical Sunidhi song, but that is the same reason why you may not be impressed by this song, as it's something which doesn't need a Rahman.


Even though like the previous songs this one is also good, the tune being that of "pray for me brother" does irk you.

Tu mera
(Chitra, Sukhwinder Singh)

Falls under the line of 'varugirai' of "Anbe Aruyire", fortunately it's just an inspiration.

Hai dardh
(Udit Narayanan)

The song though not a great effort, makes you get along the mood with major help from the singer.

Ishq ada
(female version-Parul Mishra)
(male version-Rashid Ali)

The pick of the album comes in 2 versions. While the male version is more of fun, the female version has more depth. Rahman again proves his talent in blending sufi and western music.

Muje milo
(Alka yagnik, Jayachandran)

Structured on the theme of "Kanathil muthamital", it is also inspired from the saranam of the song 'iniji idhupazhagi' which again was inspired from a R.D.Burman number. Rahman always hides his inspirations by rendering the notes in high pitch, this time it hasn't worked much. Yet the listeners instantly forget these resemblances as the song progresses.

Before judging one should remember that these songs were under the pile for 4 years. The uncertainty over the release of the album leaves Rahman every right to use these numbers. But the album having been released, as an ARR fan we don't want repetition. Yet it's a very engaging album.

Verdict: 2 ¾ out of 5 stars.

Jaane tu ya jaane na

Published in Nxg-The Hindu

Date: Mon, May 26, 2008 at 12:23 AM

Film: Jaane tu ya jaane na

Music: A.R.Rahman

Kabhi kabhi
(Rashid Ali)

Rahman's interest over Devi sri prasad's music shows here as it's the reworking of 'apudo ipudo' of "Bommarilu".

Pappu can't dance
(Blaze, Aslam, Tanvi, Anupama, Benny, Tanvi, Darshana, Satish)

With a host of singers singing, the song sure makes your feet move. But the tune and instruments aren't fresh. The remix version doesn't offer much as it's more like the remixes we hear from Shankar-Eshan-Loy.

Jaane Tu
(Runa Rizvi)

Rendered well by Runa, the song provides her with many cute variations. Had an original loop as the background for the song been used, it would have enhanced the feel.

Nazarein milana
(Swetha, Naresh, Satish)

Great use of vocals blended with guitar makes the song enjoyable. But the resemblance to 'yuhi chala' of "Swades" especially the interludes coupled with the heard before tune hampers your interest.

Tu Bole

Rahman brings the jazz of the 70s here. But having used the same feel and instrument arrangement in "Silunu oru kadhal" and "Iruvar" we feel there isn't much new here.

Kahin To
(Rashid Ali, Vasundhara Das)

It's definitely the pick of the album. But Rahman could have avoided the standard high pitch -higher octane instrumentation at the end which has become very common in western classic.

Jaane Tu
(Sukhwinder Singh)

The sad version exhibits melodramatic rendering of the tune which surprisingly doesn't bore you mainly due to Sukhwinder. The violin bit which resemblances the one used in 'uyire' for "Bombay" could have been avoided.

The album carries a western feel through out mainly because the movie promises to be a western romantic comedy. It would have become the best album of the year had Rahman shown more innovation; which he is prone to do, with the sounds.

Verdict: 3/5 stars.
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