Director Habib Faisal is back on the scene with Yash Raj Films after a two year gap since ‘Ishqazaade’ (2012). Starring Aditya Roy Kapur and the charming Parineeti Chopra in an interesting story mixing the magic of Indian food and romance, ‘Daawat-e-Ishq’ seems worth building some anticipation for. With a very colourful and tasteful execution of the script in place this could be a fun film to watch for the entire family. Sajid-Wajid are leading the music composition of the film with the lyrics of Kausar Munir again since they worked together on ‘Heropanti’ (2014) a few months ago and created a few hits including Raat Bhar that are still working on air play. Kausar does a good job with delivering a perfect balance between lyrics that work commercially and fit perfectly in the script of the film as well. So for a concept like ‘Dawat-e-Ishq’ there is a lot of playing field for Kausar and Sajid-Wajid to play around with and give us some really good music.
Title song Daawat-e-Ishq is a proper Bollywood Qawaali song with its deep Urdu and sufi vocal touch from Javed Ali but to a very upbeat. The claps to a good Tabla and Harmonium mix to a unique setup of an acoustic drum beat is refreshing to hear in this day and age. The complete 80s vibe is fun to listen to. Javed is the life of the song and delivers good vocals at the right tone and pitch with Sunidhi Chauhan by his side delivering a soft tonal voice to start with but then picks up to her usual powerful self towards the end. Kausar has done a good job with the idea of combining a food treat with romance and put them together in a very classical setting. “Sherbat mein milli mohabbat… chat toh le” sums it up nicely for the overall message of the song. Will a song of this stature work in a highly commercial club music market is disputable and to be seen.
Mannat in the voice of Sonu Nigam, Shreya Ghoshal and Keerthi Sagathia is a romantic number that sounds like a hundred other songs of Sonu and lacks innovation. It is quite traditional in lyrics, composition and delivery by the singers. It has not just classical renditions but also in words with numerous classical music references. Unfortunately even with the warm and charismatic voices of Sonu and Shreya it sounds very ‘standard’ and fails to impress. Sajid-Wajid make it sound like a missed opportunity.
Wajid takes on the mic next with Shreya to deliver a fun up tempo Rangreli. Set to a Dhol beat with Baraat style trumpets the composition works well for a wedding setup and clearly sets the stage for what audience Sajid-Wajid are hoping to target with this song. Wajid does well but Shreya is the clear star of the song and has lot of personality and energy to her vocals. Kausar is at a high point in this song as his rhymes are nicely arranged.
Shayarana is perhaps the modern masterpiece of the album in the voice of the amazing Shalmali Kholgade. She is absolutely mesmerising and can go from a whisper to a full deep tone voice effortlessly while keeping the classical twists of the arrangement perfectly intact. The composition is plain brilliant for a soft ballad with really good instrument performances on the guitars, drums and bass to give it a very nice soft rock feel perfect for a roof down drive song. The lyrics are very fine and very well knit with deep meaning to it for it to work really well on late night and afternoon radio plays. Must listen song!
Jaadu Tone Waaliya is the second best song on the album in the voice of Shabab Sabri. It is what you hear at a Pakistani Coke Studio session and get up and do some Bhangra/Gidda with the big Indian band behind the singers. Set to a nice Dholak beat coupled with an acoustic drum and a Dhol for the chorus areas makes this a rich percussions song with piano and saxophones doing their magic on the chorus areas. Sajid-Wajid even throw in some electric guitars in this very well composed fusion song for the niche listeners rather than the commercial masses. Shabab delivers a very strong vocal with a very traditional sufi touch to his vocal texture while doing more than justice to the excellent lyrics by Kausar. The typical Punjabi lyrics are mesmerising and quite folk۪ish and not that easy to understand but totally hummable thanks to the great composition.
Mannat (Reprise) is an alternate lyrics version of the original lead by Shreya Ghoshal with Sonu Nigam in the support vocals this time around which is a good variation to the original but unfortunately Shreya sounds very flat in the song with no emotion to her vocals. Sonu۪s rendition is much stronger and evocative. The lyrics are similar to the original but again fail to impress.
Daawat-E-Ishq (instrumental) is a short arrangement piece with some good percussions recitation by the Sajid-Wajid band. The supporting instruments including violins, Sarod and Rubab۪s are beautifully laid down on top of the percussions with Aditya۪s voice thrown in. The cooking sounds from the kitchen of a busy restaurant kitchen clearly take you down an Indian foodie street if you close your eyes.
Sajid-Wajid and Habib Faisal seem to have a good understanding of the audience they are going after with the music of Daawat-e-Ishq۪. The music is quite well defined in the realms of the film and do not go blatantly off to accommodate mass commercial music. The theme of the film is quite strong and unique in many aspects and the music does justice to this thanks to the aptly written lyrics by Kausar Munir and good instrumentation flowing with the composition of the songs. The sufi style of Lucknow gharana of music is well represented in the music which sets the location of the film perfectly without even seeing it. Songs including Daawat-E-Ishq, Rangreli and Jadu Tone Waaliya do that well and are well composed while Mannat that tries to be a romantic song for the masses is rather old skool and unimpressive. Shayarana is a unique song in many respects and is a best song that is well written, well composed and really well performed by Shalmali Kholgade. Overall the OST has decent songs with one or two songs worth listening to on repeat and appeals to smaller niche markets rather than the big commercial hits.
BizAsia Showbiz Rating 6.5/10