Offo’s catchiness is largely borrowed, following on the lines of many other songs in this genre from the past. But catchy it is, aided big time by Aditi Singh Sharma and Amitabh Bhattacharya’s energy. Iski Uski is the Punjabi equivalent of the above-mentioned heard before-ness. What provide the song some salvage value are Amitabh’s wacky Punjabi-English lines and Shahid Mallya and Akriti Kakar’s sprightly rendition of the same. Locha-e-Ulfat is the one that fares best in this category, riding on that infectious bagpipe hook. The arrangement took my mind back to Shankar Ehsaan Loy’s own Jhoom Baraabar Jhoom, but that hasn’t stopped me from revisiting the song over and over since the teaser came out yesterday. Benny Dayal has never had any problem delivering such songs to perfection, this is no different.
That hint of déjà vu (particularly around the sufi-esque title refrain) aside, Mast Magan is a thing of beauty – immensely endearing melody set over a rich arrangement that also features a smart naadaswaram and thavil incorporation in the latter half (one of only two short instances of South Indian elements showing up in the songs; expected more given the “2 states” premise). And with Arijit Singh and Chinmayi’s brilliance adding to the mix, that’s a winner. Almost five years after he debuted with their song Khanabadosh in London Dreams, Mohan Kannan gets another lovely with SEL called Chaandaniya. Building on a very hummable tune, the composers give the song a breezy guitar-based arrangement peppered with some fab accordion solos, and some lovely use of vocal harmonies. Mohan is awesome as usual with his singing, and equally awesome is his counterpart Yashita Sharma. Hulla Re is interestingly dark for a seemingly wedding-themed song. And it is the arrangement which will keep you hooked to this one – a pulsating mix of assorted percussion like nagada and dhol, and guitars and electronica. Lyrics are an interesting mix of Punjabi and the occasional Tamil. On the vocals, Shankar Mahadevan, Siddharth Mahadevan and Rasika Shekhar (who sings the Tamil portions) deliver a punchy performance, ably backed by the chorus.
2 States. Not as brilliant as Shankar Ehsaan Loy’s last few soundtracks, but still one of the better works they have produced for Dharma Productions.
Music Aloud Rating: 7.5/10
Top Recos: Chaandaniya, Mast Magan, Locha-e-Ulfat