Omanappenne is magical, in one word! The music part that is, I could not make much sense of the lyrics, the Malayalam part at least. Rahman crafts a dream sequence effect with the arrangement, something he had done in the past in Kangalal Kaidhusei. And the faint naadaswaram strains playing in the background off and on are just brilliant.The only thing that could have been done without is the processing of the voices of Benny Dayal and Kalyani Menon. The part that goes “Nee Pogum Vazhiyil..” sounds especially annoying owing to the effect. Devan and Chinmayi step in with the bouncy Anbil Avan which again sees South Indian percussion like thavil and mridangam playing on in between the electronic-dominated instrumentation. The highlight of the song is the fusion of Mendelssohn’s Wedding March and the South Indian Hindu Wedding song, indicative of the Hindu-Christian setting that Simbu and Trisha play in the movie.
The title track is a very rich song with soulful rendering from Karthik on a simple base of guitars, light strings on the back ground and minimal fillers. The song uses minor scales to great effect moving in and out of the same beautifully and the tune imperceptibly drifts into a 6 beat cycle and back (to the 8 beat cycle) towards the end all defining the feel of this song which is satisfying. Hosanna is something that has been reviewed in the past, and I don’t have much to add to that now, except that a superior lineup of the other songs has brought down the value of the song a bit! Nevertheless the song is pretty engaging, Vijay Prakash, Suzanne and Blaaze doing their parts well. Kannukkul starts off with an absolutely addictive hook on strings (which I have been playing on and on for the past 15 minutes!) and then unfolds into a proper dance floor-friendly track, sung well by Naresh Iyer.
Things move on in such top notch fashion until Mannippaaya. The arrangement is spot on even here, Rahman making no mistake. However the tune of the song is what I couldn’t get a hold of. It seemed to go through quite a few complex nuances to be appealing to the lay ear. Shreya Ghoshal and Rahman do a fab job of the vocals, but I somehow could not assimilate the song that well. One of the few rare occasions where Rahman does not sing the best song of his album. But all that stands forgotten come Aaromale. WHAT A SONG! This is one of those songs that would make a Malayali music fan envious of the fact that Rahman isn’t into Malayalam music, and make bands like Avial thank their stars that Rahman isn’t into a lot of this kind of music, coz he would definitely be giving them a run for their money! The kind of fusion that Rahman presents in Aaromale is at an entirely different level altogether, there is rock, there is folk, and the occasional classical snippets, all melded together in a way only the man can. And Alphonse, what a fantastic job he has done on the vocals! In fact he sounded totally different from the way he usually does so I had difficulty believing it was indeed Alphonse. And the kind of octave range he displays in the song makes one wonder what the hell he was doing all this while, especially when he had such immense opportunities, having composed so many Malayalam songs himself.
To sum up, it is refreshing to hear a set of totally new tunes from a Gautam Menon flick. Rahman has started off his 2010 campaign in style. And in Aaromale, he has once again shown why he is a league apart from other music directors of his time.
Music Aloud rating: 8.5/10
Recommended tracks: In fact we would love to recommend almost the entire album, but for the want of listing three, we recommend Aaromale, Kannukkul and Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaaya.
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