Be it ��Jannat�۪ (2008) or ��Jannat 2�۪ (2012), director Kunal Deshmukh has delivered a good taste in music that has worked across the commercial and niche audiences. His forthcoming crime comedy ��Raja Natwarlal�۪ (2014) starring Emraan Hashmi and Pakistani actress Humaima Malick should possibly have the same level of music delivered. But with the music controls in the hand of south Indian music director Yuvan Shankar Raja who has had no success in Bollywood, the success of this album does raise some concern. Irshad Kamil has written the lyrics and that could be the critical factor that can deliver some good songs for this movie.
Arijit Singh seems to be the winning formula for a number of soundtracks these days and thus there is no surprise to see him opening the album with his solo Tere Hoke Rehengay. A deeply romantic number picturised in the rain with Hashmi and Malick the song has all the elements to get good TV and radio airtime play. The composition and lyrics are good and with a catchy chorus that Arijit delivers to perfection. What does not work is the arrangement and boring instrumentation. The layering of the instruments is ordinary and thus the song lacks overall oomph factor to make it stand out from the rest.
Dukki Tikki in the voice of Mika Singh is the party song of the album. With a strong South Indian instrumentation vibe this song reminds one of song from ��Chennai Express�۪ (2013). Karnatic Shenai and Mridungam�۪s are used creatively for an upbeat non-classical performance to create a street party song supported with trumpets and a fun beat. Mika�۪s vocals have some effects on them that give a different edge to his vocals which is something really smart done by Yuvan. Mika does a good job in his delivery of the vocals as well and stands out from all his recent work. The lyrics are not that great on this song but Yuvan makes it up with his composition and letting Mika do his thing that gets everyone moving with him.
Perhaps the most interesting song on the album is Kabhi Ruhani Kabhi Rumani with a really interesting start with acoustic guitar very well performed on a couple of strings. But then Benny Dayal�۪s voice breaks in and takes away all the attention to him with his very warm and deep vocals. Kamil�۪s lyrics are brilliant on this song and that makes it easier for Benny to deliver emotion and class to the song. His party voice is great as we know but he proves his romantic voice is as good and definitely comparable to that of Arijit Singh. The musical mix Indian classical to a western beat pattern is well arranged with Carnatic violins for a bridge in the song. Dholaks and a good piano take up most of the background music landscape to complement Benny�۪s vocals and Kamil�۪s fantastic lyrics making this a song to check out for sure.
Namak Paare is a tapori dance bar item number on the album. Mamta Sharma leads the vocals of the item girl for a genre she is great at delivering attitude and fun. But unfortunately the overall lyrics and composition are quite bland leaving not much for Mamta to work with. The cheesy nature of the lyrics is expected for such a song but it just does not have a modern vibe and is very 90s. The supporting vocals of Anupam Amod are also very average and it all boils down to the average work done on this song by Yuvan.
Flip Your Collar Back is yet another brilliant job by Benny Dayal in a genre that he is best and most comfortable in that is a party anthem. The musical work by Yuvan on this song is brilliant in many ways making this comparable to a number of mainstream songs with a strong Hip-Hop break-beat vibe. Kamil supports very well on the lyrics yet again to create what will be a hit party tune. A good house remix of this song would surely help achieve great heights for this song but unfortunately the album has no remixes on it. Benny does a good job on the vocals giving it a lot of style and dynamism to deliver a strong appeal for the young college crowd. The Flip Your Collar Back line is sure to become a cult with young audiences with good airplay and a good video.
Tere Hoke Rahengay (Reprise) in the voice of Shweta Pandit is a really good alternate version of the original. The composition is the same but with a very different arrangement and delicate instrumentation that is predominantly acoustic in nature for most of the song. The focus is mainly on Shweta�۪s vocals and rightly so as she delivers a very controlled and evocative performance in the right texture of voice with the minimum requirement of any effects or processing to it. Kamil has also done a few alternate lyrics to create a different identity for this song. The instrumentation gradually develops as the song goes on and is very well designed including violins and accordion towards the end. Great listen!
For his first Bollywood project even with tons of music direction experience behind him, Yuvan delivers a very inconsistent performance with some really good compositions with some really bad or average ones in there. His choice of lyricist in Kamil and some of the singers is really the saving grace that holds the album is some high regard with songs like Tere Hoke Rahengay, Kabhi Ruhani Kabhi Rumani and Flip Your Collar Back that deliver good quality to the ears. Arijit Singh, Shweta Pandit and Benny Dayal stand out the most with charming vocals that hold your attention while pleasing the listeners. Yuvan and Kamil could have done a lot better on Namak Paare which is perhaps the sore thumb of the album. Dukki Tikki is an average song overall but with some good aspects to it. Overall ��Raja Natwarlal�۪ sounds far different to the ��Jannat�۪ series of the films and so not in comparison to Kunal Deshmukh�۪s previous works but with a good push this album can produce a couple chat top 5�۪s.
Overall Rating ��� 7/10