Dear Zindagi – Music Review (Bollywood Soundtrack)


Songs and full credits at the end.

Love You Zindagi is decidedly Amit Trivedi; in fact, it even carries echoes of the title track of his last outing with the director. Not to say that the song doesn’t impress, the general joie de vivre in Kausar Munir’s lines and the arrangement (with the horns, banjo et al) is bound to rub off on you. The singing by Jasleen Royal just about works; the initial allure is increasingly wearing thin due to the monotony in her style. She does however do better than the movie’s leading lady Alia Bhatt who sings the dance floor-friendly Club Mix of the song. The melody does lend itself well to a party mix, but the lyrics (used as is from the original) don’t quite work. It seems to be the season of celebrating breakups; after The Breakup Song in Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, it’s Amit Trivedi and Kausar Muni’s turn to make a high-spirited song on the subject – Let’s Break Up. It ends up almost as effective as the former too, largely owing to the composer’s neatly realised retro funk sound and Vishal Dadlani handling vocals like the rock star he is. The déjà vu aspect is prominent in Just Go To Hell Dil too – I get particularly reminded of the underrated beauty from Aisha, Lehrein owing to that violin solo (Jitendra Thakur), the heartbreak theme etc. Even so, the soulfulness of the melody will make you overlook that familiarity, along with Sunidhi Chauhan’s top notch singing that easily switches from desolateness to angst around the title refrain.

After having recently recorded sung six songs (including the background tracks) for Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, Arijit Singh gets three songs in Dear Zindagi. First of which is the romantic Tu Hi Hai that rides on the breezy framework of plucked stings and a cheery tune, delivered to a tee by the singer. Arijit also gets the soundtrack’s best, a delightful jazz-flavoured piece titled Tareefon Se. Once again the composer crafts a solid melody that works perfectly with Kausar Munir’s well-written verse, and the arrangement sees a soothing mix of keys and guitars and saxophone. And Arijit’s languid rendition is the icing on an already delicious cake! Amit ends the soundtrack with two adaptations of Ilayaraja-Gulzar’s 1983 classic from Sadma, Ae Zindagi Gale Laga Le. Arijit sings Take 1, a rock-flavoured take on the song. Not the first such cover of the composition in recent times incidentally; 2013 movie Prague featured one by Delhi band Ehsaas with Suryaveer Huja on vocals. While Arijit’s singing is superior than Suryaveer’s, I found the Prague version more imaginatively arranged. Amit does a better job with Take 2, the predominantly electronic orchestration here is much more intriguing and impressive. Unfortunately, he decides to make Alia Bhatt do the singing, and that doesn’t help the song’s case at all. In both the remixes however, the original tune and lyrics still manage to make them a compelling hear.

Dear Zindagi. Amit Trivedi once again delivers for Gauri Shinde, like he did the first time, a bunch of feel-good tracks that don’t always sound fresh but are definitely engaging.

Music Aloud Rating: 3.5/5

Top Recos: Tareefon Se, Go To Hell Dil, Ae Zindagi Gale Laga Le Take 1

This review first appeared in the Mumbai edition of The Hindu.

Musician credits

Programmed by: Amit Trivedi

Programmed by: Gourab Dutta

Music Arrangement & Programmed by: Jarvis Menezes (Taareefon Se & Just Go To Hell Dil)

Music Arrangement & Programmed by: Vineeth Jay (Love You Zindagi Club Mix & Ae Zindagi Take 2)

Drums: Darshan Doshi (Taareefon Se, Just Go To Hell Dil & Love You Zindagi)
Jai Row Kavi (Ae Zindagi Take 1)

Guitar: Warren Mendonsa (Just Go To Hell Dil)
Rhythm Shaw (Taarefon Se)
Joell Mukherjii (Tu Hi Hai, Love You Zindagi)

Music Arrangement & Guitar: Warren Mendonsa (Ae Zindagi Take 1)

Bass: Rushad Mistry (Taareefon Se and Just Go To Hell Dil)
Ardeshir Mistry (Ae Zindagi Take 1)

Banjo, Mandolin, Rabab, Bouzouki: Tapas Roy (Tu Hi Hai, Love You Zindagi)

Sax, Clarinet, Flute: Inapakurti D Rao (Love You Zindagi, Taareefon Se)

Trumpet: Kishore Sodha (Love You Zindagi)

Violin: Jitendra D Thakur (Just Go To Hell Dil)

Keys: Beven Fonseca (Ae Zindagi Take 1)

Backing Vocals

Just Go To Hell Dil: Rajiv Sundaresan, Suhas Sawant, Arun Kamath, Crystal Sequira, Bianca Gomes

Love You Zindagi: Rajiv Sundaresan, Suhas Sawant, Joell Mukherjii

Let’s Break Up: Rajiv Sundaresan, Suhas Sawant, Arun Kamath

Tu Hi Hai: Joell Mukherjii

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