You can listen to all songs at the end of the review.
The expectations you have when you see the names Shaan Rahman and Vineeth Sreenivasan together are totally met in Ee Mizhikalen. The gorgeous melody (based on the very pretty and the very Malayali sounding arabhi raga) is treated to an equally exquisite arrangement by the composer; strings section by Cochin Strings being the stars. And behind the mic is Vineeth (who also wrote the lyrics) delivering it in style along with Mridula Warrier. Vineeth sings a second song in the soundtrack (written by Manu Manjith), Doore Doore, that also is high on the melody quotient. The simple and minimal orchestration means that the song majorly depends on the singer and he shoulders that responsibility commendably. However, the person who creates a real winner out of the song is Rinu Razak in the reprise version. The lady pulls off a fabulous rendition with just Jovey George Sujo on the electric piano for support.
Not sure if it is the general rhythm and feel of the song or the presence of Shaan Rahman on vocals, Aaromale took me back to Pranaya Nila from Teja Bhai at times. Not that it matters given the likeability of the tune and the arrangement. There is something undeniably AR Rahman-esque about Payye Payye, especially in Nikhil’s flute phrases. But again, the song has enough in offer to not have you thinking much about that. Nikhil himself rules the arrangement with some stellar flute-playing, even as KS Harisankar does a confident singing debut. Not surprising actually, given his rich musical lineage (grandson of Carnatic vocalist Dr. K Omanakutty, whose siblings happen to be late composer MG Radhakrishnan and singer MG Sreekumar). Shaan’s second song Chaayunnuvo is the only one that doesn’t make the cut. It does start off quite well, Sumesh Parameshwar’s guitar in particular raising the hopes. The song however takes on a trite Bollywood-ish route after that, and the processing in Shaan’s voice doesn’t help either.
Ormayundo Ee Mukham. To a Malayali these words are evocative of one of the most explosive movie characters ever made, but this soundtrack (and presumably the movie) is the polar opposite of that. One that yet again establishes Shaan Rahman’s mastery over melodic songs.
Music Aloud Rating: 8/10
Top Recos: Ee Mizhikalen, Doore Doore (Reprise), Payye Payye
All songs composed, arranged and programmed by Shaan Rahman.
Lyrics of songs 01 and 02 by Vineeth Sreenivasan and songs 03, 04, 05 and 06 by Manu Manjith.
Additional Voices by Ayana Venugopal, Geethanjali and Shemy.
Guitars by Sumesh. Flute by Nikhil. Tabla by Anand. Strings by Cochin Strings.
All songs recorded at Freddy’s AVG – cochin, My Studio – cochin and Unity Studio – Kozhikode.
All songs mixed and mastered by Biju James at VGP Studios – Chennai.