Marathi elements in the lyrics and tune, heavy use of percussion, Ganpati Bappa Moryaa is all about composer Gulraj Singh stepping on the Ajay Atul territory and pulling it off in style. He has help from the energetic vocalists of course, led from the front by Shankar Mahadevan. Jaya Jaya Ho is better, the composer smartly interspersing the anthemic title hook by the chorus with Vijay Prakash, Sanjeev Chimmalgi and Siddharth Mahadevan’s spotless classical-oriented rendition, all to a superbly addictive arrangement. Vandan Ho has Hariharan’s classical expertise and Tapas Roy and Shon Pinto’s work on the strings going big time in its favor, but despite that a tedium sort of sets in at some point; it could be the dholak beats.
Nandini Srikar adds another lovely to her steadily growing kitty of awesome songs with yet another semiclassical (abheri/bhimpalasi raga based, I think) piece, Tera Naam. Watch out for the wonderful Carnatic guitar solo by N Abhay! Gulraj promotes Shivam Mahadevan (Shankar M’s younger son) from guest singer to lead singer in the pepped up version of Bolo Na Bolo, with Akriti Kakar and Alyssa Mendonsa replaced by Loy Mendonsa. Loy’s accented Vakra Thunda didn’t really work for me, but the eleven year old Shivam’s rendition is cute, and honest. Notable changes in the arrangement from the original (that was part of Ganaraj Adhiraj part 1, for the uninitiated) are that prominent bass and the jazzy touches in the interludes. The Ganesh Aarti is Lalbaugchaa Raajaa Parichay Sai Bhajan Mandal’s show all the way. Nishadh Chandra does a nice job of complementing the singers with his live rhythm arrangement, as they take the song, and the album, to a climactic finish. In the fact the song does mildly evoke memories of another Ganesh paean from Agneepath, Deva Sri Ganesha, with lines like Acchutham Keshavam coming in towards the end.
Composer Gulraj Singh and lyricist Manoj Yadav brave the sequels-are-mostly-flops stigma and add four more lovely tunes to their fabulous tribute to Lord Ganesha from last year, Ganaraj Adhiraj. Obviously not as good as having nine brilliant tracks, but a commendable follow-up nevertheless.
Music Aloud Rating: 7.5/10
Top Recos: Jaya Jaya Ho, Tera Naam, Ganpati Bappa Moryaa