Baar Baar Dekho
Composers: Amaal Mallik, Arko, Badshah, Prem Hardeep,Jasleen Royal, Bilal Saeed
Lyrics: Prateek Kuhad, Aditya Sharma
A sculpted Katrina Kaif gyrating to the song Kala chashma in the upcoming Dharma Productions venture Baar Baar Dekho has been finding much airtime and bandwidth for over a fortnight now. Ever since this three minute-piece arrived, with its groovy tones and drones, it’s hard to not give some pops and locks to one’s neck and limbs.
The repackaging of old compositions and rehashing of old patterns isn’t a new concept in Bollywood music. What’s interesting, however, in this version of Kala chashma is that composer Badshah hasn’t split the atoms from inside the tune, which almost a decade ago, made a star out of Punjabi singer Amar Arshi. He retains everything from the original composition — the tumbi preludes and interludes, the pace, the flow, the vibratos. What he adds, apart from a super fun rap, however, is some swag, more rhythms, occasional yelps and a Neha Kakkar. She sings the female version of the song and kills it with her nasal tone, and by following the cadence that Arshi did, in turn hitting quite the smash here. A number that played at Punjabi weddings once with much aplomb, is a club favourite now.
As for rest of the album, it’s surprisingly slow-moving, with its set of alps and ebbs, mostly in a good way. The album introduces 25-year-old singer Jasleen Royal as a composer with an indie pop-folk Kho gaye hum kahan. An acoustic piece, she sings this with Prateek Kuhad. The melody with its cascading guitar notes for company is simple, lyrical, and lingers. The minimal adornment and the path the piece follows with a child-like, interior monologue-style verse, faintly reminds us of Anyone else but you from Ellen Page-starrer Juno.
Kaur delivers another engaging track Nachde ne saare. A Punjabi wedding song, quirky lyrics (Munde plenty, mere layi ho gayi senti), tumbi notes, squelches and a combination of drums and dhol, it’s a sprightly piece and announces the arrival of a rare talent, and someone who promises interesting outings.
This is followed by Sau aasmaan sung by Neeti Mohan and Armaan Malik. Composer Amaal Malik introduces the song with a perky combination of mandolins and banjos. The composition is passable and has Mohan sing it in a voice we haven’t heard before — slightly operatic and falsetto singing. But the piece itself doesn’t stick. Arko’s Dariya has the composer heavily process his own vocals. The composition is quite ordinary and humdrum to begin with. And then he goes and wrecks it by putting his voice through a machine. It sounds robotic and has nothing to write home about. The six-track album also has Pakistan-based musician Bilal Saeed croon Teri khair mangdi from his 2012 album Twelve. He’s removed the rap in an attempt at the film’s sad song, which is extremely dull that has no discernible selling point.
Buy it for Kala chashma and two songs by Jasleen Royal. The rest of the album isn’t excruciatingly bad, but can be easily avoided.