Music Review: ‘Joker’

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Shirish Kunder has been editing Bollywood films for over a decade now. He redefines the word multi-talented��by having��his fingers in every pie including story writing, direction, editing, production, publicity, music direction, screenplay writing, writing song lyrics, composing background score or writing dialogues.��He has��learnt the hard way the business of��movie-making inside out. His first directorial venture of ��Jaan-e-Mann�۪ (2006) had decently good music. He then spent a lot of time working closely with wife Farah Khan as her editor on major projects like ��Main Hoon Na�۪ (2004), ��Om Shanti Om�۪ (2007) and most recently the semi-hit-flop ��Tees Maar Khan�۪ (2010) where he had the credits for everything but as the editor. Noticeably, super-hit music ��is a common factor to all the above film names, inevitably��raising the music expectations from his second directorial venture, ��Joker�۪.

Akshay Kumar and Sonakshi Sinha are back again after their recent success in ��Rowdy Rathore�۪ (2012) for this supernatural adventure. The trailers remind one of a cross between Bollywood�۪s ��Koi��_ Mil Gaya�۪ (2003) and Hollywood�۪s ��Signs�۪ (2002) with a fun twist to it. The music for ��Joker�۪ is by Gaurav Dagaonkar who is fairly new to the Bollywood business with some B-grade projects behind him but a genius brain groomed at the Indian Institute of Management (Ahmedabad). He sacrificed his corporate career for a career in music and is now fulfilling his dream with his first major release with Kunder by his side as his director and lyricist.

Sonakshi Sinha and Akshay Kumar in Joker
Sonakshi Sinha and Akshay Kumar in Joker

Starting off in style with some amazing Marathi dhols to a pure Mumbai Marathi beat is a song called Kafirana in the voice of Sunidhi Chauhan. Gaurav brings out the best in her as it is good to hear her in her typical style and spirit. The fun is evident in the spirit of the composition but the instrumentation programming is a little disturbing. Pay little attention to the lyrics as they are below average in quality but the chorus music on its own fills up nicely in the ears as the theme music of the movie as in the trailers.

A pleasant surprise comes in the voice of Udit Narayan on the next song called Jugnu. This glorious voice that has entertained everyone throughout the last��two decades had disappeared from the limelight��maybe because of��new talent in the industry but returned in style this year with Gun Gun Guna in ��Agneepath�۪ (2012). Jugnu is as good as any other Narayan song. The composition and feel of the song reminds one of a cross between Yeh Tara Woh Tara and Yeh Jo Desh Hai Tera both from ��Swades�۪ (2004). The lyrics are pretty good and inspirational proving Kunder does indeed have some good writing skills. It should maybe��be the��theme song for the Indian team at the London��Olympics.

Sing Raja in the voice of hit maker Daler Mehndi and Sonu Kakkar is perhaps to be the hit this summer. The song depicts the national integration of India with bits in a number of languages spanning India. The funky groove of the song is foot-tapping and Daler is sure to drive this song up the airplay charts and dancefloor hits with his energy. Lyrics are not the strength of this song but the melody created with flutes really works to create a good listen.

The most versatile singer, Sonu Nigam, leads the title song called Yeh Joker along with Shweta Pandit. The music is well laid out and is wholesome with a world music orchestra feel to it. Nigam delivers the masti perfectly required in this song while Pandit has barely a chorus part to play. The tempo pick-up towards the end of the song really gets one going and moving with this song. A decent but average song to listen to but not the song that one would enjoy on the radio without the visual performances going with it.

Tears of Joker is an instrumental piece that sparks a number of emotions in the listener. Keep listening to it and it goes from sadness to elation, excitement and happiness with the help of the same instruments and Hindustani classical vibe towards the end. A very well done music piece but it sounds like a compilation of the ���best of Rahman them music�۪s�۝.

Another instrumental piece called Alien Arrival ends this soundtrack in a typical West End thriller style. The typical Texan cowboy standoff style of adventure music dominates this short piece creating a good visual appeal from the music itself.

Music Review: 'Joker'
Music Review: 'Joker'

FINAL WORD

Kunder does not deliver any big hits like his previous projects on the soundtrack of ��Joker�۪. On a Bollywood album with six tracks when you have two instrumental pieces, one knows that creativity has��fallen short somewhere. Another problem with having his fingers in too many pies can be seen��in the��poor lyrics.��Dagaonkar does a fairly good job for his first major project but his work needs more originality and creativity as every song on the album sounds heard-before and a little��clich̩. The songs have more of a visual appeal with the motive of placing them in the film rather than having great songs and then trying to fit them in the movie which is a good film-making approach to take if that really is the case. Overall, Jugnu and Sing Raja are the recommended favourites thanks to Udit Narayan and Daler Mehndi. One wonders why Sing Raja does not have a remix as there surely is potential to create a club hit there.

Rating ��� 6.5/10

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