The Punjabi-ness of London Thumakda has enough life in it to help mitigate the very familiar Amit Trivedi sound it carries about it. Labh Janjua does an expectedly exuberant rendition of it with Sonu and Neha Kakkar in tow. Badra Bahaar starts off on a majestic brass section before turning on the déjà vu mode, but some fabulous arrangement from Amit ensures that you are grooving to it soon. The composer makes some deft use of strings here, a combination of rock guitars with classical style guitars (Sanjoy Das at work I suppose) and sitar playing out some lovely abheri/bhimpalasi raga flavoured bits. The composer himself does the vocals in this one. O Gujariya is spunky enough to work well as a party track, and party song specialist Shefali Alvares has the vocals section neatly covered alongside Nikhil D’Souza. Only the other day was I saying that Arijit Singh has now sung quality songs for pretty much every leading composer, and people pointed out that ARR and Amit Trivedi are left. Well the Amit Trivedi part gets taken care of in Taake Jhanke, a happy singalong-ish track built on a guitar-led rock base. The singer is at his reliable best rendering Anvita Dutt’s lines, joined well by the (uncredited) backing vocalists around the title hook.
Jugni and Kinare belong to the Udaan line of songs. Jugni more so, with Anvita’s lyrics implying a flight into freedom and a fairly comparable song structure. The fact that Amit himself sings the song adds to the feeling. In Kinare however the composer brings more variety into the proceedings, the sitar and trumpet in particular add a fab new element to the song. Mohan Kannan is flawless as ever singing this one – a pity he doesn’t get employed much by other composers. Amit sticks to a minimal synth background in the short melancholic Punjabi piece Ranjha, letting the debutant singer Rupesh Kumar Ram take the centre stage (Dinesh and Sankalp point out that this track was arranged by Rupesh himself). Which he does in style, with a heartfelt rendition. And that leaves us with the song of the soundtrack – Harjaiyaan. A song that clearly belongs to the league of Pareshaan and Shubhaarambh. A gradual, haunting buildup to that title hook, adorned en route by the dotara (I assume, by the Bengali folk feel it evokes) playing over an ambient synth-strings background, and the sudden eruption of percussive elements just after the hook, joined by the trumpet and some more intriguing sounds (awesome bass line as well) in due course. And nailing the singing part is Nandini Srikar, returning to Bollywood after over a year (singing that is, she did the vocal arrangement for Dhuaan from D Day) with ample assistance from the
(once again uncredited) backing vocalists (backing vocals have been done by Nandini herself apparently).
Queen. Amit Trivedi treads familiar soundscapes and yet produces an engaging set of songs. That’s three top soundtracks in Hindi just a month into 2014!
Music Aloud Rating: 8/10
Top Recos: Harjaiyaan, Taake Jhanke, Badra Bahaar