Anarkali – Music Review (Malayalam Movie Soundtrack)

anarkali malayalam posterSongs at the end of the review.

Aa Oruthi Aavaloruthi evokes fond memories of Vineeth Sreenivasan’s playback debut way back in 2002, a maappilappaattu titled Kasavinte Thattamittu also with Vidyasagar, at a time when the genre was considered the singer’s speciality. And he proves that he still hasn’t lost his flair with the genre, doing a fine rendition here along with Manjari. And just like Kasavinte, this one too has a pleasant tune with a touch of melancholy that rides atop an engaging arrangement featuring some very Vidyasagar-esque moments, but is highlighted by the percussion (tablas mainly). Ee Thanutha Manchurangal is higher up on the familiarity scale, but that is not to say it doesn’t impress – the haunting tune and the composer’s oft-used tropes still carry enough impact in them. Also helping is the singing by Karthik and Shweta Mohan.

Sahibaa Innethumegha gets off to a promising frenetic start before adopting a calmer ghazal-like disposition, one that is right down Hariharan’s alley. And it is indeed the singer’s performance that is the highlight here, while Vidyasagar takes the arrangement through strings-led highs off and on. After the force-fitting of Raanjhanaas and Saahibaas in the previous songs, Mohabbat Mein goes the whole hog with completely Hindi lyrics written by Manoj Muntashir (other songs are penned by the movie’s producer Rajeev Nair), also marking the Malayalam movie debut of talented singer Shadab Faridi. Despite the presence of him and Shreya Ghoshal behind the mic though, the qawwali-esque song ends up sounding rather average. The soundtrack’s best, however, goes to K S Harishankar (who incidentally bagged the top song in the composer’s last soundtrack as well). Vaanam Chaayum – a pensive melody that is undeniably of the composer’s make, but of the kind where those characteristic elements only make the song more endearing. Beautiful tune with an ethereal, goosebump-inducing arrangement (the synth, the bass line, the violins, the sitar..) and Harishankar just breezing through the rendition – this one is vintage Vidyasagar!

Anarkali. Replete with familiar sounds, but engaging soundtrack from Vidyasagar. That’s three good soundtracks from the composer this year by the way.

Music Aloud Rating: 7.5/10

Top Recos: Vaanam Chaayum, Sahibaa Innethu Megha, Aa Oruthi Avaloruthi

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