You can listen to the songs at the end of the review (link via @vivekranjit).
Puthumazhayai (quite a few songs with that title now) is sweet – a nice melody set to a waltz-like rhythm, nothing very fresh, but one that works perfectly for Shreya Ghoshal’s honeyed voice. An alternate version of the song has Divya S Menon who does a fine rendition too, but between the two Shreya’s version wins. Rajalakshmi gets to sing the serene prayer song Sneham Nee Naadha, one that is set to a minimal ambient arrangement by composer Gopi Sunder. The tune has a heard-before feel to it, but the treatment of the track (some beautiful violin) and the wonderful singing make it a compelling listen. Though it has on vocals the man from Gopi’s recent superhit Mukkathe Penne, Mohammad Maqbool Mansoor (along with Shaktisree Gopalan) and though both the singers do their part well, the composer doesn’t recreate the same magic with Pularikalo. It does however make for an engaging piece with its Muslim-flavoured arrangement, highlight of which is the long saxophone prelude from Jossy.
It is in the remaining two songs that the composer scores a whopper though. Oru Kari Mukilinu somehow took me back to Kanninima, not for any similarity in tune, rather the comparable haunting feel. The melody is beautiful, the arrangement sounds exotic (excellent employment of guitars and violins, and that ethereal humming) and Vijay Prakash is impeccable behind the mic. And finally Akale – a song along the lines of what Rex Vijayan did in Lord Livingstone 7000 Kandi, or Neha Nair/Yakzon Pereira in Iyobinte Pusthakam – Gopi deftly incorporating world music elements around a folk-based track sung to an engaging guitar base. Jossy’s birdcall-like flute is a brilliant touch, even as Malgudi Shubha carries off the singing with finesse.
In a year that has seen the composer a little off-colour compared to the last couple of years (Mukkathe Penne was a glorious exception of course), Charlie is the best soundtrack I have heard from Gopi Sunder.
Music Aloud Rating: 8/10
Top Recos: Akale, Oru Kari Mukilinu, Pularikalo