No matter what detractors think and believe, the fact is that ''Khans'' have always been reigning ''gladiators'' for Bollywood at the box office. So why not expect one among them to be playing ''desi-gladiator'' for our audiences. VEER pitches chiseled bodied Salman Khan in historic epic as he plays role of a lifetime of a ''brave-heart'' warrior. Set in pre-Independence era, it promises grandeur, valor and grandiloquence in style for a love story that is embroiled with heroic love saga. One would have expected the likes of Ismail Darbar, Shantanu Moitra or genius like A R Rahman for doing the honors in the music department. As anticipated, Salman's favorites Sajid-Wajid takes charge by unraveling into realms into territories of classical Indian and western music. It's a cool divulge from regular funky beat music from them and big challenge where music epitomizes bygone era with music desiring to be all-together traditional and sublime. Gulzar's razor-sharp penned lyrics are there as strong supports but this is the first big occasion of this communion. Can Sajid-Wajid's dexterity have that zeal and skill to deliver the needful? Does the music have desired emblematic feel to make warriors on big screen and audiences in theatres singing to its tune? Let's be together on battle field to witness the musical facts...
Rustic, traditional with spirit of compatriotism, the album head-starts with tribesman's and warrior's rejoicing number in spirited vocal strengths in ''Talli Maar''. As expected, the first soundtrack comes as emblematic, it has throaty Sukhwinder Singh, impressive Sonu Nigam with their enthuse vocals ushering out the joyous mood in folklore lyrical style. Gulzar's ethnicity brings zeal of ''Chappa Chappa'' (MAACHIS (1996)) with Rajasthani hilly touches in its earthy arrangements that are filled with sounds of loud handclaps, traditional drums, horns and trumpets, delivering out overwhelming sound impacts. This one is notable situational score for big screen that will be fed with lavish opulence or strikingly rich VFX effects to generate out the grandeur. Wajid and Neuman Pinto's raising baritones as booming back-up supports adds to the tempo and mood of the track. It reappears in its second version as ''Talli (solo)'' with the solitary vocals of Sukhwinder Singh rendered with similar zest, arrangements, feel and tempo.
''Surili aanhkiyon wale, Suna hai teri aankhiyon se, Behti hai neendein aur neendon mein sapne, Kabhi to kinare pe, Utar mere sapno se...'' Dreamz Unlimited! Gulzar's saab's'' shayari'' builds castle of love in dreamy bon-voyage of mellifluous happening with sonorous baritones giving it a sensitizing appeal in ''Surili Aankhiyon Wale''. Sajid-Wajid's somber classical westernized connotations of romance in subtle orchestrations makes impeccable rendition to spell out pure magic. Rahat Fateh Ali Khan's remarkable varying tones catapult with changing moods and seeps well in mellowed softer arrangements. Suzanne D' Mello's anglicized wording delivers out an archetypical British era to give out feel of trans-cultural romance (similar to ''waltz'' part of ''O Re Chori'' (LAAGAN)). Gulzar's sheer poetry-in-motion makes him top contenders among ''Best Lyricist'' and the wordings are like textbook for grooming lyricists. Sunidhi Chauhan's sensuous binge in huskier tones comes as welcome surprise in its ''duet'' version. It comes in latter half and makes decorum mushier with its feminine presence and adds to the ''love quotient'' of the flick. Rahat add one more chartbusting hit to his credits and this will surely be big hit among hardcore Salman's fans. Brilliant!!!
As one memories goes to last costume drama hit track ''Salaam'' (UMRAON JAAN) done in flamboyance, there is ''Salaam Aaya'', another brilliantly ushered number with subtle melodic ambience making superlative charisma. Roop Kumar Rathod's serene vocals sets myriad of emotions that makes genteel communion with Shreya Ghoshal's equally mellifluous works. The tenderness flared in mix and match of classical Indian and western instrumentals brings soothing impact on melodic ears. This is second triumph for Gulzar saab with his prosaic finesse (''Dabi Dabi saaanson mein suna tha mene, Bole bina mera naam aaya, Palkein jhuki aur uthne lagi to, Haule se uska salaam aaya...) with soul-enchanting music, leaving out an undying impact of timeless love. Sajid-Wajid makes this ''ghazal-gayaki'' mushier with beautifying ''sitar'', ''sarod'' and ''jaltarang'' sauntering sounds making superb concoction with ''tabla'' works in setting out rich cultural appeal. The classical westernized musical piece gives voluminous space for graceful ''waltz'' (old-fashioned ball-room dance) with Suzanne D' Mello's svelte back-vocals giving it befitting sumptuous feel. Melodious!!!
The energized rapturous commotion of cultural fusion and integration of varied sounds and rhythms makes joyful presence in merry-making ''Meherbaniyan''. This one goes for ''Scottish marching bands'' special musical works that epitomized 18th century British cultural feel with bagpiper's rhythmic patterns making amiable chemistry with blowing trumpets and horns. Sonu Nigam is vociferously domineering as solo vocalist as his roaring vocals sets mood frenzy in loud choral roars and cheerful instrumental exhibits. To urbane listeners, it may sound like classical rock ''n'' roll track but it's fabulous inundation of bygone era of classical English music, done in style. Gulzar's lyrics excel and so Sajid-Wajid's music and it all deserves to be favorites among promotions for the flick. Entertaining!!!
If it comes to finest of purist Indian classical works in recent times then Sajid-Wajid makes their genuine efforts in blending out ethnicity with class in brilliantly composed and rendered ''Kanha (thumri)''. It comes out as traditional ''bhajan'' sung in ''thumri'' stylized rendition with diversified incorporation of ''bandishes'' and ''ragas'' of various ranges subliming together with divine touches. This attribute to Lord Krishna by immensely talented Rekha Bharadwaj showing her control in recital with ''sarangi'' and ''tabla'' displays moving with a swifter tempo in tandem. Ushered with signature tuneful impacts, it brings Rajasthani folksy sandy feel with the sudden increase in tempo in latter parts, to serenade out melodramatic feel. Soul-Enchanting!!!
The curtains fall with characteristically boisterous English festive celebration stylized instrumental works (feel of ''Meherbaniyan'') in brief orchestral work ''Spirit of Veer''.
VEER is ''brave-heart'' musical effort in showcasing cultural fusion with fine set of soundtracks benchmarking it in cadre of worth-listening period film albums. Sajid-Wajid's dexterity of blending genres, styles, cultures works and coupled with promising track-record with Salman's flicks, it paves way to big success again as they changes lanes with great politesse. If it comes to listener's acceptance and commercial success, soundtracks like ''Salaam Aaya'', ''Surili Aankhiyon Wale'' and ''Meherbaniyan'' shows promising signs to be next big thing on charts. There is immense quality in Gulzar's writing skills and contentment for ears in tracks like ''Kanha (thumri)'' and ''Talli''. VEER deserves enthused promotions and matched step-to-step with lavish opulence, bankable face value, this can be prize-winning preposition in days to come.