The short hip hop-ish Twist on Top is fun while it lasts, courtesy the wacky arrangement from Madley Blues (a two member band comprised of Harish and Prashanth, for the uninitiated). But just over a minute in length, the piece gets over before it develops beyond that groovy hook, quite evidently serving a situational purpose. The breezy Unnai Naanum makes for a pleasant listen, thanks mainly to Keba Jeremiah’s guitar work and Harish Venkat’s singing. The arrangement however stays well within the confines of the pop rock framework now fairly commonplace in film music. In fact the composers make the rock flavor work much better in the highly addictive Anbe Aaruyire. Harish once again leads the vocals with Keith Peters on the bass, but the song belongs to Josh Mark Raj on lead guitar and Jai Row Kavi (of Tough on Tobacco, Indus Creed among other acts) on the drums.
The happy sound of bluegrass and the maestro MS Vishwanathan on vocals – it is hard not to instantly fall in love with Yele Yele. The star of the song is undoubtedly Amal Raj with his stunning rendition of violin and banjo (and dobro, ukulele, oud and mandolin as per the credits) with ample support on the percussion from Allwyn Jeyapaul. The only string instrument Amal doesn’t play is the upright bass which is handled by Selvaraj. His age does show in MSV’s voice, but that doesn’t stop him from doing an endearing rendition of the song alongside Harish. Dingu Dongu has all ingredients of a standard kuthu song – the naadaswaram by Thiru Murthy and the percussion by Lakshmi Narayanan and Raju in particular – but also some awesome bass from Keba and one fab but woefully short violin cameo by Karthick Iyer. Mano is no stranger to the genre, and with Solar Sai does an effortless delivery of Subu’s (who also happens to be director of the movie) playful lyrics. Finally there is my favorite song of the soundtrack, Kaattukkulla Kannaamoochi. A curious whodunit sound led by some slick guitaring (Keba and Keith), a very Amit Trivedi-ish melodeon cameo and an interesting second interlude involving horns (programmed by Leon James). Vijay Prakash sounds different singing this one with Harshitha Krishnan, but both of them pull off a commendable job.
Sutta Kadhai. A thoroughly engaging Tamil movie debut by Madley Blues! I shall be looking forward to much more from these guys. Oh, and props to Navneeth Balachanderan for the wonderful sound mixing job!
Music Aloud Rating: 8.5/10
Top Recos: Kaattukkulla Kannaamoochi, Dingu Dongu, Yele Yele, Anbe Aaruyire
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