Music Review: ‘Housefull 4’

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'Housefull 4'
There is not much depth in the soundtrack and lacks a big song to lead the album. No song is super successful while each song still tries hard to be memorable and time will tell if these songs manage to stick around.

BizAsia Rating

3

Sajid Nadiadwala is back with another comic venture in the ‘Housefull’ series directed by Farhad Samji of ‘Entertainment’ (2014) and ‘Housefull 3’ (2016) fame. Scheduled as the big Diwali release for 2019, ‘Housefull 4’ has a story spanning 600 years with a comic take on reincarnation. Bobby Deol joins the ‘Housefull’ bandwagon replacing Abhishek Bachchan in this project joining Akshay Kumar and Ritiesh Deshmukh. The long list of artists include Kriti Sanon, Pooja Hegde, Kriti Kharbanda, Chunky Pandey, Boman Irani, Johnny Lever even Nawazuddin Siddiqui and many more. For a massive budget multi-starrer the ‘Housefull’ series has always made money at the box office in-spite of its poor choice of jokes. But the situation comedy that the scripts create is something that really works for this series and this latest expedition goes across multiple births to tackle all confusion to find their individual true love. Like some of the previous projects, ‘Housefull 4’ has a strong UK connect too with major portions shot in the country. The UK music influence might be something to look out for if this film manages to capture some of that. The music for ‘Housefull 3’ wasn’t that great and an overload of cheesy music is something common to the ‘Housefull’ series so the expectations are not too high with this soundtrack but perhaps we hope to be surprised. Sohail Sen is leading the music here with some other singles by other composers as well.

Cheesy music it is! The first single Ek Chumma is exactly what the book cover suggests. A little bit of fun, a little annoying and very cheesy.. this is exactly what was expected by a Housefull music record. Sen has composed an Arabic flavored song here with an interesting beat arrangement. The music is well recorded with a host of Middle Eastern instruments including Mandolin, Arabic Clarinets & percussion’s with a Darabuka leading the beat of the song. But the song is neither a dance number nor a chill out and so struggles to fit into typical music genres. It is surely entertaining thanks to the fun exchanges written by the great Sameer. Vocals by Altamash Faridi & Jyotica Tangri are average with nothing extraordinary about them. The enactment in the video is very cheeky and establishes the fun further setting the stage for what the movie will be all about although the fact the song is filmed in the UK with typical British props but has an Arabic composition which just doesn’t add up. It rather feels misplaced in all aspects but within the context of the film it works in its tacky avatar. As a song on its own this is not one that will go far. 2/5

The second release on the album is a lot more interesting while still staying within the comic state. Shaitan Ka Saala is an extremely catchy number! The release of this second single not only establishes Kumar’s reincarnated character – Bala but as a song is also thoroughly entertaining. The programming and composition is brilliant and uses repetition very cleverly to make this song difficult to get out of your head. The rhythm melody is very unique and the pace is very addictive making it an easy one to even dance along to. There is use of Arabic vibes again with some instruments like Shenai that help set the 15th century setting. Vishal Dadlani is absolutely amazing with his vocals and makes a lasting impression. His energy is contagious! In the video Kumar delivers the same amount of energy and his enactment is absolutely crazy true to his character. The bling, the glamour on what looks like a very expensive set makes a good impression. There are not much lyrics in the song so Samji didn’t have to do much with the lyrics but the composition, vocals and visuals work well together delivering what could be a hit for the album. Even if not a big hit this sure will be one unique catchy number that everyone will remember Kumar for his crazy bald bling look. 4/5.

This album has taken a different approach on remakes with this next song. Talk about songs for the supernatural and the song Bhoot Raja from ‘Chaalbaaz’ (1989) comes to mind. The Bhoot Song in ‘Housefull 4’ is a far off remake of this 1989 comedy classic where Johnny Lever plays the role of a baba trying to get the sprits out of an innocent Sridevi. In this 2019 comedy Kumar is receiving the spells from Siddiqui playing the baba trying to get the demonic possessions of his past life out of him. Samji has not only written the lyrics with Vayu but also has helped Sandeep Shirodkar & Devi Sri Prasad with the composition of this song. The melody and arrangement of this song is far different from the original but the remake focusses on the concept and hook lyrics of the original. The fresh batch of lyrics in this song add a bit of extra fun to the song but are almost nonsensical! Still confused as to how Alia Bhatt got name dropped in the song!?! Mika’s vocals are decent but nothing extraordinary. The song is not scary neither overly funny. The video is quite elaborate with high production value but the music is rather dull as it seems the aim was to make this a dance number for the Halloween season but it just does not that have that effect. 2.5/5

The newest single release Chammo is a massive production… both musically and visually. Finally a song that is not cheesy although it still has that light & fun side to it. The 15th century grandeur is next level in the video. The set design, props, costumes and the overall cinematography is epic and shot to perfection with what seems to be easy 100+ dancers. The music is equally magnificent in the song produced by Sen with the help of a full scale ensemble mixing traditional folk music & instruments with those of 2019. There is elaborate use of big percussions like dhol & nagadas mixed with modern drum beats with mandolins, shenais, flutes and a whole range of strings. The rhythm section is well programmed giving the core melody of the song that is very catchy. Sameer’s lyrics are not fabulous here but fairly decent for the genre with a bit of love, bit of fun & tease that go with admitting the love situation of Bollywood films. The choice of words is not too 15th century of course being a comedy and so feels a little out of place in the visual setting. Vocals with Sukhwinder Singh, Shreya Ghoshal, Shadab Faridi are undeniably the highlight with a Singh being the centre piece that totally rules the aural domain. He is very strong and the range is massive in his vocal while Ghoshal is sweet and delicate working as a good mix. This song has good potential for airplay and hopefully will work well with listeners thanks to its catchy melody. 3.5/5

The final song of the album is the real funny bones song called Badla composed & written by Farhad Samji and sung by Danish Sabri. Composed as a qawalli the execution is very smartly done as the song pokes fun at the changing trends in the society. The lyrics are almost a faceoff between the 15th century characters against the 21st century characters. The song goes from a book to Facebook and even doesn’t spare Trump! The vocals are strong but limited by the appeal of the song. The music and chorus is catchy with a strong concept but this is nothing but a situational song for the film. 2/5

 

FINAL WORD

The soundtrack of ‘Housefull 4’ is funny & cheesy no doubt! Limited by the appeal of the film there is only so much one can do to make the music fit with the film while also delivering on the listen ability parameters that define the success of the music album. Nonetheless the soundtrack is unique in the current times as it does not run after the typical remakes and dance and romantic numbers. It truly is a soundtrack for this film and fits well there keeping a different identity for itself. Sohail Sen is the star of the album Chammo, Ek Chumma & Shaitaan Ka Saala under his belt. None of them is brilliant but two of them are well structured and recorded. The Bhoot Song is an interesting remake but fails to create a memorable impact as its original counterpart while Badla is a situational filler from the movie. Sukhwinder Singh and Vishal Dadlani are most impressive with vocals on the album while lyrics by Farhad Samji are a hit n miss. There is not much depth in the soundtrack and lacks a big song to lead the album. No song is super successful while each song still tries hard to be memorable and time will tell if these songs manage to stick around.

BizAsiaLive.com Rating – 3/5

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.

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