Music: Anupam Roy
Lyricists: Manoj Yadav & Anupam Roy
Anyone familiar with Bengali popular music scene in the last five years will be familiar with Anupam Roy’s name. Roy’s sound is characterised by his melodic depth, excellent lyrics and his rootedness in Bengali culture. Hence it is interesting to see how Piku, Roy’s first Hindi film, pans out. The “Bengaliness” is omnipresent in Piku — a film about a father-daughter relationship set in Kolkata. It works in the album’s favour, giving the songs a feel of the land its set in.
Bezubaan is quite easily the centerpiece of the album. The structure is like a conventional Hindi/ Bangla rock ballad, but what works is the strong central melody. You think it has begun on a predictable note but there is a nice chord progression in the bridge — “Ab galtiya jo maanli toh thik hai”. And then it flows into a hook that stays with you.
The next, Journey song, is a breezy, road trip track. It changes its gears and rhythms just as the landscape changes when we look outside the window of a moving car. There is a folksy bit in the antara, which would have better suited a rustic voice since Shreya Ghoshal sounds too sanitised and familiar. One could well mistake Roy’s vocals as Arijit Singh’s, as he turns it a tad huskier in Lamhe guzar gaye, which is a bittersweet slowburn. The overall feel good vibe of the album gets its biggest outlet in the title song of Piku. There are all the cheery elements of a sunshiny number — it even has “subah ki dhoop” in the first stanza — a charming Sunidhi Chauhan and happy Latin American guitars. But they all fail to rise above the ordinary melody. Roy’s compositions may sound tiring by the time you reach Teri meri baatein, which doesn’t do much except for an interesting guitar solo.
The lyrics of the album aren’t bad but sound tepid to the standards Roy set for himself in Bengali. With a couple of very good songs, that may take their time to grow, this is an album you might need to hear a number of times to get into.