Student of the Year – Music Review

Listen to the soundtrack here.

For a rebellious rant, Ratta Maar sounds very sweet for most part. But that apart, it is a nice listen with its breezy guitar work, and most importantly the singing. Vishal Dadlani and Shefali Alvarez are wonderful, so is the use of the chorus. The classical alaap by Shreya Ghoshal (Puriya Dhanashree raga-based, as confirmed by @meemeera and @thepuccacritic) had me expecting another Bhare Naina/Dua type song out of Radha, so I was let down by what followed after those 30 seconds. I am developing a liking for the song after repeated listens though, courtesy a spunky arrangement. The composers assist Shreya well on the backing vocals, and Udit Narayan does a neat cameo towards the end. The best of the soundtrack, despite that annoying title line, is Ishq Wala Love which sees some top class arrangement from the composers; particularly loved the employment of the tabla. And Neeti Mohan, Shekhar and Salim Merchant’s flawless job behind the mic ensures that the composers’ work is not wasted.

Which brings us to the less interesting section of the soundtrack. The Disco Song will rule the dance floors without doubt, but would on my list count as the weakest old song tribute yet by Vishal Shekhar – heavily lacking on freshness. Benny Dayal and Sunidhi Chauhan are their exuberant selves, and the composers leave the title hook by Nazia Hassan intact. If there is one good thing I see coming out of this exercise, it is that more people from the younger generation may come to know of Biddu Appaiah and Nazia Hassan. And for that I and thankful to the makers. The two Punjabi-flavored tracks score even lower on the freshness factor. Kukkad has Shahid Mallya’s singing (haven’t seen much of him this year) as its high point, while Vele has its quirky lyrics; neither of which is enough to induce multiple listens. Closing the soundtrack is the ambitiously titled Mashup of the Year by the current mashup favorite Kiran Kamath. Barring the play on the movie’s title, there is nothing very “of the year” about this mashup. But I quite like the way Kiran has been going about his mixing, it is a refreshing change from the regular DJ remixes.

Student of the Year. A mixed bag from the composers, which belies the fabulous run Vishal Shekhar have had this year. Ironically this soundtrack will be heard and appreciated more than their last, more deserving, work in Arjun The Warrior Prince. But such is Bollywood.

Music Aloud Rating: 6.5/10

Top Recos: Ishq Wala Love, Ratta Maar, Radha

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