Kashmir...the cutting edge of political turbulence, an unresolved burning topic for decades and once the living paradise has attracted cinematic intelligentsia to great extent. Whether it was Mani Ratnam's ROJA (1992), Vidhu Vinod Chopra's MISSION KASHMIR (2000) and now LAMHAA, popular commercial cinema has focused their lens and flashed out their searchlights on this burning issue with great zeal. Music...that's an interesting dialogue! Yes, the music has been influential as well as entertaining with Rehman's tunes befitting the occasion well in ROJA and Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy delivering out needful for MISSION KASHMIR. After ushering out couple of enchanting Sufi tracks in ANWAR (2007), Mithoon, a gifted music icon gets a major opportunity of his lifetime of being the composer of this socio-political relevant flick. Sufism matched with Kashmiri folksy music is the flavor of the album and so one expects ample amount of creative innovation coming out from it. So far, the track record (BAS EK PAL (2006), AGGAR (2007), THE TRAIN (2007) of Mithoon has been proliferating and so expectations are reasonably high. To get the hilly enthralling melodic feel with dash of realism of this hi-octane thriller, let's get plugged in...
Hilly romantic mysticism gets unveiled in courteous flows of stringed instrumentals and delightful soothing rhythms in mellifluous sounding "Madno". After being comforting best in "Javeda Zindagi" (ANWAR - 2007), the sonorously subtle vocals of Kshitij Tarey exudes out enthralling couture of divine soul-meet that gets teamed with impressive sounding Chinamyi. There is folksy Kashmiri feel of its natural delights in fine amalgam of "santoor", "rabab" and guitar stringing in tandem that plays calming background ambience to the track. Sayeed Quadri's lyrics makes soliloquy of romantic happenings soaked in Hindi and Kashmiri refined words and verses ("Madno, mashuko, dilbaro, madno re...) with poetic delight. In terms of compositions and writings, it's a difficult ask as well as conceptually aspired task that is delivered well with perfection and all it requires is patient hearing for its eight minutes plus duration. Kshitij's voice is sheer delight and so do the dexterity in the display of symphonies that makes it as one of the finest soulful tracks of this year.
As desired, presumed and predicted, this track gets its second version in "Saajnaa" with reasonably understandable Hindi wordings but similar sounding soothing composition. Mika replaces Kshitij with his sober tones that gets echoed and varied at places with Chinmayi singing well in tandem. Mithoon's multihued deliverance picks up ace in his first outing and makes formidable start to the album with promise of delivering out chartbuster in coming days. Soul-enchanting!!!
In turmoil of disbelief, disgust and abhorrence, the feel of optimism, spirit of fraternity and resurgence of peace makes innocent vibes in motivational sounding "Saalam Zindagi". Mithoon makes it more like peace-loving anthem for future-Kashmir with Kashmiri's children's chorals making chirping impacts and giving it a thematically profound feel. Delightful voices of Arun Daga and Mohd. Irfan in lighter tones are again a big respite and boon to the situation. It has those hilly folksy touches of "Kasto Mazza" (PARINEETA -2005) and inspirational feel of "Rind Posh Mal" (MISSION KASHMIR -2000) that gives it a true pop-patriotism feel. Mithoon's composition is again a listening delight with control over delectable orchestrations that soothes well into contours of light-hearted wordings and vocals. Saayed Quadri's comprehensible wordings ("Jis cheez ko paane ki thi umeed kho chuki, Uss cheez ko paakar bahut dil ko khushi hui...) adds to the lucid flow and gives a rational edge to the jingoistic feel of the flick. It's one bright musical spot that can be covetously used as promotional feature to create awareness for the flick.
Realistically rollicking! Now that's what we call aesthetically profound rock musical show where volatile hot subject gets embroiled well into heart-throbbing musical maneuvers in "Main Kaun Hoon". It triggers off with helicopter sounds, one-liners about Kashmir and later explodes out with thriving rock musical rhythmical beat patterns. Palash Sen (lead vocalist of Indi-pop group EUPHORIA) comes out with huskier baritones in typical rock-concert feel with fine concoction of traditional instrumentals in its racy flows. This is Amitabh Verma's solitary penned track talks about the lost identity of true "Kashmiri", political turbulence and the meaning of "Kashmiriyat" at intermittent phases of the track. It's a youth-centric number that has ammunition of distorted guitar riffs, racing electric blues matched with electrified percussions with tangy signature tuneful impact, similar to Rehman's "Dil Se" (DIL SE -1998). This lively rock show falls in cadre of theme-oriented tracks like "Zinda Hoon Main" (ZINDA -2005) that comes moreover like a mouthpiece of lead protagonist in upbeat musical mode. After making notable presence in "Sone De Ma" (SHOOTOUT AT LOKHANDWALA -2007), Palash Sen makes bombastic presence in "rock-star" singing mode that should be having maximum takers among urbane listeners. Rocking!!!
The soul of Kashmir makes its presence in the form of prayer and comes out in vociferously unplugged singing format in meaningfully written and composed "Zameen-O-Aasman". Kshitij Tarey makes his second valuable addition to the album with this theme-oriented track that promises to be effective background score in emotionally compelling situations of the flick. In terms of composition and arrangements, it's a fine collage of piano drills and synchronized violin notes that are streamlined well with melodramatically pitched sound impacts. Mithoon succeeds as "conductor" in maintaining out equilibrium between theatrically paced orchestrations and remarkable vocals to gist out the plight of Kashmiri people. Saayed Quadri maintains his top form again and his wordings ("Ab tere naam par tere bande, Iss kadar itna khoon bahaate hain, Dekh kar jinko yeh samandar bhi, Apni aukaadon pe sharmaate hain...) emotes well about the degrading political scenario of the state in linguistically insightful verses. Like recently heard "Dhan Dhan Dharti" (RAAJNEETI (2010), it's a classy add again to the marquee that should be worthy listen for all those who treasure meaningful substance in music. Impressive!!!
Like impulsively rocking situational score "Kurbaan Hua" (KURBAAN -2009), the last soundtrack "Rehmat Zara" comes out in typically hard-rock mode, capturing out changing phases and intense moments of varied situations. Presumed to be another effective background score, it has elements of Pakistani rock group track and is loaded heavily on grumbling sounds, electrified guitar riffs and bombastic drumming with passionate Sufism wordings involved in it. Mithoon makes his first presence as a singer along with Mohd. Irfan and gives it a true campus loving "rock-show" appeal to lure youth listeners. It would be interesting to view its binge when this runs loud on big silver screen.
LAMHAA is a fine mix of style and substance and has its heart and head at right places. After hiatus of almost three years, Mithoon shows promise again and relives the mysticism of ANWAR that gave him prominence as reliable composer in B-town. As far as competence and professionalism is concerned, both producers and composer have not shown any rough patches or signs of mediocrity in the entire album and delivers out needful for the subject. It's big successes lies in tracks like "Madno", "Saajna" and "Main Kaun Hoon" while meaningfully conceived "Zaamen-O-Aasman", "Salaam Zindagi" and "Rehmat Zara" are equally enlightening in their display. The music album should be catalyzing factor in flick's promotion and success and will be worthy purchase for the listeners.