By Faridoon Shahryar, Bollywood Trade News Network
Form is temporary while class is permanent. Himesh Reshamiya is the flavour of the hot season but comparing him with A R Rehman is going over-the-top. Apart from BANARAS and TERE NAAM, all his compositions more or less sound the same. His music is something like an English Pop Band Modern Talking that was a rage in the eighties although all their tunes and music arrangements were similar. Even apna Bappi Da liberally copied them. Remember Zubi Zubi... As for Reshamiya, he casts his magic in 36 CHINA TOWN as well, although you've been hearing the same energy in his all-n-sundry music videos on dime-a-dozen-channels.
Jab Kabhi is the best track of the album. Stylishly sung by Kunal Ganjawala, it has two more versions remixed by Akbar Sami and DJ Suketu.
Jab kabhi main kho jaaon to mujhe dhoondh loge na
Jab kabhi main tanha rahoon, mera saath doge na
Well, lyricist Sameer finally seems to have dipped into his inner reservoir to write a throbbing-with-emotions song. The wordings also remind you of that Kumar Shanu classic Jab Koi Baat Bigad Jaaye from Vinod Khanna's JURM. The Keyboard harmonica starts the proceedings as if a whisper of confession. Ganjawala is the right man for rendering a high-on-sentiments number like Jab Kabhi with his no-holds-barred quality. His wrapped-in-dew voice asks questions from his beloved urging for reassurance and security. A poignant violin wafts past in slow motion while the gentle notes of the acoustic guitar, is like weary waves trespassing into the territory of virgin-shore-sand. Alka Yagnik's brief signature at the end is the heroine's last impressions on the canvas of a passionate lover.
I usually find that the remixes of an original composition appearing in the album don't do much except raising the tempo and fitting in inane English portions. But the DJ Suketu version of Jab Kabhi is different. It's more lounge than dance mix. The tempo hasn't been flirted around with however a beat has been added to it. A keyboard loop gently repeats throughout giving it a calm laidback feel something on the lines of what one hears in an Eminem number, though it's not hip hop by any yardstick. An English rap section has been added but it goes with the flow. The Akbar Sami version is fast, racy, and bouncy. There's nothing new in terms of production quality, but it's fun till it lasts.
Aashiqui Meri has an interesting beginning. A sarangi serenades the emptiness while a rabab piece soon follows lending support. Himesh is in his element when he sings evocatively. The rabab piece continues to make an appearance through out effectively becoming a part of a rounded melody. Sunidhi Chauhan for once sings in a different style. In fact, one has to check the credits to confirm if it is actually her. After listening to the original, Akbar Sami's remix version surprises with the sheer energy. Though, the tempo is a bit too quick, but after a point you start loving it. There are scratch sounds, sensuous female chorus sections and an upbeat rhythm track that goes with the flow. While listening to it, one just can't help thinking of the tantalizingly sexy moves of Kareena Kapoor in the promos. I think she adds fire to the fuel of the song and so does the hot-bod Upen Patel. In all, a number that truly rocks.
Apart from these two numbers, the other three songs are average and don't really dent your imagination. Dil Tumhare Bina has a grotesque Rock Your Body chorus that irritates and is repeated too often. The narcissist in Himesh makes him sing this track as well. Well, a music composer-singer should sing sparingly. Be it R D Burman or Rehman, they don't throng all their compositions. Too much of that nasal twang of Reshamiya makes his singing predictable. The Violin intro is reminiscent of Aashiq Banaya Aapne and has a good impact while Sunidhi Chauhan is okay dokay. As for the remix version by Akbar Sami, less said the better. For, it defies all reason as to what's the big deal in cutting a remix of every track. The accelerated rhythm, incorrigible rapping and full doze of adrenaline need not always sound good.
24/7 I think of you finds Shaan and Sunidhi crooning a bizarre hook line having no rhyme or reason. It's catchy and frothy and would appeal to the youngsters for its cheerful simplicity in terms of musical arrangements. But apart from that there's nothing spectacular. The remix version by Akbar Sami is extra-pacy. Apart from upping the tempo, he doesn't do much other than slicing his DJ scratch slaps in the middle, an attractive female chorus line, though one really wishes that this 24/7 line should have been used in a restrained manner.
I recently read that 'Rockstar' Reshamiya compared himself with Michael Jackson and Bryan Adams. Well, taking the cue he starts Badi Dilchaspi with the hookline Just Beat It (Remember the cult song by the same wordings by Jackson in the eighties) and the difference is as distant as Antarctica and Australia. The slack pace and the tired music arrangements defy the reason as to why it is there in the first place. KK and Arya sound much better in the super racy remix by Akbar Sami. But in all, it's a disappointment.
So, in 36 CHINA TOWN, we have five songs and six remixes. A couple of good songs and their equally enchanting remixes make it decent.
36 CHINA TOWN: Hit on the dance floor.