|Music Review: 'Street Dancer 3D'|
The music of ‘Street Dancer 3D’ is actually an album in true sense of its definition. A solid 12 song soundtrack where each song is fitting to the story and genre of the movie while independently being good songs to listen to adds extra marks to this album. The variety in the album is staggering with most genres covered from dance to romantic to mytho to sad to patriotism but of course dance is the main theme and adding the danceable music layer to each category of song is very well done to let dance be the main medium of expressing all emotions.
Choreographer turned director Remo D’Souza’s third installment of dance movies ‘ABCD: Any Body Can Dance’ (2013) movie series is called ‘Street Dancer 3D’. The first two were about finding the hidden talent in the society across all classes and using dance to bring people together. But this third edition looks different going by its trailer. This one is based in London and works bringing India and Pakistan together through dance. Starring Varun Dhawan, Shraddha Kapoor, Prabhudheva, Nora Fatehi in the lead along with numerous other dancers there is good amount of dance talent in this movie to bring fire to the dancefloor. Of course that won’t be possible without music that is capable of getting the dancers to go wild on the floor so the pressure is on Tanishk Bagchi and Sachin –Jigar to deliver some killer beats to make it easy for the magic to happen. Being yet another compilation album there is good faith that there will be some powerful singles from various artists to drive some good musical entertainment.
The first song of the album is a remake of Rahman and Prabhudheva’s 1998 original Muqabla. This was a song that combined the unique magic of Rahman’s stunning production and Prabhudheva’s brilliant dance moves. A song as iconic as this has rarely been seen in Bollywood since so this is sure is a perfect song to remake for this movie, that too starring Deva again to bring the original touch back to it. Shabbir Ahmed and Bagchi write a fresh set of simple lyrics based around competition and love. The lyrics are so basic and common that one would have heard the same lines in many songs before so nothing worth mentioning on that front but then Bagchi makes it up on beats by spicing up the composition to make it sound urban and a lot more dynamic compared to the original. The arrangement is exactly the same with no change and even the synths have been retained.. just the beats and effects are the new added bits. This is actually good as the chorus is not the only thing in the original that made it famous. The brilliance of Rahman was in each part of the song.. including the final scatting break-beat instrumentation. Vocals by Yash Narvekar and Parampara Thakur are pretty good and make this song very current. Their vocal styling works very well and add up nicely with Dhawan and Kapoor on screen. Overall there are very few traces of fresh talent added to this remake which is a big negative but also a positive to be completely honest. The original was so powerful as a song that Bagchi has done a good job of not disturbing the brilliant parts and only changed a few parts here and there. This judgement itself is a sign of great talent that makes this a good one to listen to. 3.5/5
The next single release of the album is a scorcher! Quite literally the song is called Garmi and it is one hot number with all credits attributed to Badshah who was written, produced and sung (rather rapped) this entire song. This song is one designed really for a hot video rather than a strong audio experience. If that really was a brief then Badshah has delivered it to a T as the music is spot on for some really raunchy choreography delivered on screen by Fatehi. It’s not just that she is smoking hot in the video but combine that with some terrific choreography and cinematography in a sexy club environment that it all works very well together. Badshah leads the music with really deep electronic bass beats with an interesting snake charmer style chorus music making it really easy for the dance choreographers to come up with iconic dance moves that everyone will copy in the clubs when the DJ drops this song. His lyrics are the typical Badshah style rap but with some extra oomph to it. He keeps the lyrics sultry but not sleazy which is a good balance to have. The sultry aspects are amplified by Neha Kakkar’s vocals who does a good job with the vocals for her part. She jells well with Badshah who is the real star of the song and this could quite easily be a single on Badshah’s pop album. His vocal delivery is a little turn off as at parts he does sound like a drooling despo but I guess that is the brief of the song. Overall a very different sound move for Bollywood that is very sexual and erotic in many ways… perhaps a tad too much maybe. Not sure if radio and TV channels will be able to air this before watershed hours but if this song catches on then it sure will be a big one for the album. 4/5
The latest release Illegal Weapon 2.0 is a remake of the 2017 original of Garry Sandhu with Jasmine Sandlas Illegal Weapon. Bagchi has added a lot more attack to the music of this remake making it a lot more Bollywood worthy and danceable. The programmed synthetic beats & bass are crisp with strong urban vibes that would be a treat in the UK to blaze through the speakers while driving around with this song on high volume. The Punjabi aspects are retained through some of the lyrics but even the fresh set of part Hindi lyrics by Priya Saraiya make the song work for both Hindi and Punjabi music markets. The new set of vocals by Sandhu and Sandlas are good but perhaps the original works better for them. Nonetheless this a good song for both to make a mark in Bollywood. But perhaps not the best song as it still sounds a bit hollow on the music front and it doesn’t stand out by far from the original. 3/5
Sachin – Jigar’s Dua Karo is a strong sad number with the vocals of Arijit Singh. His high-pitched vocal oozes emotions with sadness, frustration and anger driving his strong performance. His control is spectacular and he delivers the message of the song like a true master craftsmen. Lyrics by Saraiya are very well written and the chorus is quite powerful backed by a strong composition by the music duo. The rhymes in the lyrics are laid out smoothly giving the song that extra effectiveness. The rock setting of the music arrangement is simple but effective for the genre of the song. It is soothing to listen and manages to touch a few heart strings as well as the progression of the song helps stir some emotions for the listener absorbing them in the song. A very good addition to the song is the rap by Bohemia. This is perfectly his style of song and he doesn’t disappoint. There is good amount of content in his rap along the storylines and he delivers it very well. Overall a good song for the album adding variety beyond the traditional dance category. The dance performance on the rap part in the music video is well delivered by Dhawan and further adds merit to this song. 3.5/5
The latest new single is a vibe killer to be completely honest. A remake of Guru Randhawa’s superhit Lagdi Lahore Di, this remake is much more bare bones in musicality and a lot slower in tempo to deliver a strong urban vibe rather than a Punjabi vibe which clearly doesn’t work. Guess that is a shortfall of remixing latest songs that is a very fresh to the ears of the listeners that immediate comparison is a given, and sometimes to the detriment of the remixed number. Sachin-Jigar’s music does not have the kick or progression that the original had making this a weak dance number. The riffs and bridge music are dull and clear signs of lack of ideas to make this song standout. The fresh set of lyrics by Randhawa are nowhere as cool as the original and don’t flow as well. The whole idea of the song still rides on the original chorus. The new set of female vocals by Tulsi Kumar add up well with Randhawa’s vocals but with mediocre lyrics and music Kumar struggles to make an impact with her performance. This is an easy number to skip or rather even ignore its existence. 2/5
This is a remix rather than a remake with just a few added music bits keeping lyrics and vocals the same of the original. Already a high tempo number, Harsh Upadhyay paces up Hindustani even more adding some vocal scatting and a synthetic beat overlaid the original desi beats. Shankar Mahadevan & Udit Narayan sound as good as they did back when this song rocked the charts for its patriotic appeal in ‘Dus’ (1997). Their energy is infectious even today and this song fits in well with the India vs Pakistan dance off situation in the movie. Sameer’s lyrics stand the test of time with this song and everyone can been seen singing along when this song comes on in any situation. Musically there is not much to add here as the original was brilliant in itself. As a song this is a 5/5 but considering this is a remix it only deserves a 3/5.
Bezubaan Kab Se is a definitive addition to all Remo D’souza dance movie series. Sachin – Jigar revive this song with Jigar managing the lyrics on his own. The opening music of the song is very well programmed and executed creating an effect that lingers through the entire song. The musical piece has strong dance performance ability and the overall styling of the song is quite good from a staging element. The percussions are brilliant thanks to the amazing Sivamani featured on the song. Lyrics are pretty standard with emotional benefits and standing up for one self. The drops in the song give extra emphasis to the lyrics making it further effective. The delivery on the vocals are a mix of vigor and emotion delivered well by Siddharth Basrur with the soft chorus rendered by Jubin Nautiyal to perfection. Basrur brings his rock vocals nicely to a Bollywood rendition with a strong high-pitched delivery throughout. The music reinvention is great in this song and it flows well for a finale climax song thanks to its execution. But on its own this is not a song for regular airplay which might hold it back from the charts but for its production quality it deserves a 4/5.
Gurinder Seagal’s Pind is deeply moving Punjabi number. The melody with violins is gorgeous and Seagal’s vocal itself can make one drop into tears. The song captures the plight of illegal migrants stranded in the UK and the delivery captures those emotions really well. The choice of instrumentation is heart-warming and amplify the depth of the vocals further. The ambience brought into the song is captivating pulling the listener into the depths of its strong feelings of being separated from one’s mother. Kunaal Vermaa has written this song with what seems to be so much ease but it must have been a journey of understanding what a stranded migrant goes through. He captures the emotions and expresses them in words with some great talent almost as if having gone through it himself. The way Seagal delivers this song it is really easy to picture the character while listening to it and this is a real success. 4/5
Nachi Nachi is yet another terrific dance number and perhaps better than any of the remakes on this album. Sachin-Jigar create such a fat Bass that it really rocks the speakers and even the dancefloor. The deep urban vibes are coupled with some amazing amount of attitude in the vocals. The overall personality of the song is really in-your-face with styling that is completely brutal force that gets the head bobbing along to its unique groove. Milind Gaba along with Asli Gold are behind the smooth Punjabi-Hindi lyrics that invites the competition on the dancefloor and Gaba even delivers a sick rap on the mic like a proper rap star. The vocals are the best part of the song. Gaba’s rap adds on Neeti Mohan delivering the Hindi vocal and Dhvani Bhanushali with the Punjabi chorus. There is style, arrogance, defiance and a whole load of brash personality in their delivery that makes it fit for a dance off song. The vocal combination with the amazing music is simply lethal making this as good a dance number a Garmi. 4/5
Divya Kumar along with Sachin-Jigar deliver the mytho number Gann Deva written by Bhargav Purohit. Kumar’s vocal is the real winner of the song as it has the right balance for a mytho number placed in a dance movie setting. He has the softness and dynamic range as well. It sounds pure and almost barely fixed through vocal editors. The bare chorus vocal is where he shines best. The music is a cleaver mix of traditional Maharashtrian Kachhi nagada percussions but fused with electro music as well to fit it in this London based dance movie. The music outcome is fairly good and works well for a dance performance making this a fit number for the 2020 Ganesh Chaturthi season around the world. The prayer form lyrics are nicely arranged driving strength during testing times making this a song for an emotional low point in the movie. A decent number adding further variety to the album in the mytho setting. 3/5
Sip Sip 2.0 is yet another Punjabi remake by Bagchi featuring the original artist Sandlas coming together again with Sandhu to voice Dhawan in this song. Remaking a very recent song is always a risk and this one fails too. The 2018 original is only a little over a year old and still a range in the clubs so this slower version seems like an overkill of the song. The energy of the original is lost as the song is slowed down to make it fit an RnB beat. Although the beat and a deep electro bass is well programmed but Sandlas’s vigorous vocals are not matched by Sandhu. The additional Punjabi lyrics by Kumaar and Sandhu are not bad at all but the arrangement is a let-down. The vocals are also so heavily processed with filters and effects that the artists sound like those fake computerised voices. This song is pushing remakes to the verge of a breakdown and clearly not the best jobs by Bagchi. 2.5/5
Perhaps one of the biggest and best attempts at a remake is the final song on the album called Mile Sur. When you take a classically arranged song of over 30 years and deliver a fresh new take on it then that is truly a remake. Sachin-Jigar smash it with this one as they take the 1988 national integration song by Piyush Pandey and Ashok Patki and make it a song of cross-border integration between the Indian & Pakistani dance squads in the film. The thought is brilliant and the execution is even better! The varied instrumentation across Hindustani classical, break beat Hip-Hop, Rap, RnB, Punjabi folk and commercial Bollywood is arranged in a sensational style. Lyrics by Jigar Saraiya, Vayu, IP Singh across the various stanza’s, chorus and bridges fit in nicely with the setting of the song in the story and the bigger theme of cross-border harmony making this is a well written song. Like the original the number of singers on here are also from various settings and styles of music with Navraj Hans, Shalmali Kholgade, Divya Kumar leading the vocals and Vayu, Shashwat Singh, IP Singh, Rakesh Maini adding various supporting vocals and solos. There is a huge amount of talent on this song and everything is very well balanced making this not a good but a great song! 4.5/5
The music of ‘Street Dancer 3D’ is actually an album in true sense of its definition. A solid 12 song soundtrack where each song is fitting to the story and genre of the movie while independently being good songs to listen to adds extra marks to this album. Kudos to director Remo D’Souza for handpicking each song across various composers and artists. To make a good dance movie you need good music and he has left no stone unturned! The variety in the album is staggering with most genres covered from dance to romantic to mytho to sad to patriotism but of course dance is the main theme and adding the danceable music layer to each category of song is very well done to let dance be the main medium of expressing all emotions. Sachin-Jigar are the real star of the album with their originals and some remakes being all well arranged. Mile Sur, Nachi Nachi, Dua Karo are brilliant songs by them while Badshah smashes it with his one number Garmi becoming the song of the season. Bagchi only does a fair job on his remakes getting it brutally wrong on a couple of them but Muqabla and Illegal Weapon 2.0 are decent ones. Gurinder Seagal’s Pind is by far one of the most gorgeous numbers on the album while Harsh Upadhyay’s Hindustani remake is worth a listen. There is some great singing and lyrical work across the album that make some of them top numbers of 2020. Had the album not hedged strongly on some disappointing Punjabi remakes then this would have been a nearly perfect album but other than that this truly is a music album to have in your playlists.
BizAsiaLive.com Rating – 4/5
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.