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 Kal Ho Naa Ho
Director :
Music :
Lyrics :
Starring :
 Karan Johar
 Shankar, Ehsaan, Loy
 Javed Akhtar
 Shahrukh Khan, Priety Zinta, Saif Ali Khan

By Raunaq Kotecha

It's almost Diwali time and the time for 2003 to wrap up and we are all wondering as to why the Chopra's and the Johar's have not offered a movie for cine goers. Actually, we are all waiting for the real Blockbuster of 2003 that can salvage Bollywood's "Doobti Naiyya" and sweep the awards at award nights.

Kal Ho Na Ho (KHNH) may just prove to be one of such most awaited movies of 2003. Latest from Dharma Production's stable, garnered with stars like Shahrukh Khan, Priety Zinta and Saif Ali Khan, KHNH has already started making waves in and outside Industry with its unsullied appeal and soft melodious music. Keeping to the tradition of the Chopra's and Johar's, KHNH too has harmonious, yet trendy music score, but this time from the DCH hit trio - Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy who are better known for their AR Rehman ishtyle music. With KHNH, Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy have tried to bring together best of Indian and Western music worlds. While two tracks are as melodious as they are expected to be (KHNH being a Yash Johar film), other tracks sound like a pop album.

KHNH opens with the title track - Kal Ho Na Ho, which is by and large the best song of the album but certainly not the best that Shankar, Ehsaan and Loy can offer. The song is registered immediately with the listeners with its soft, melodious feel and may also play on your mind for rest of your day if you are the types who prefer melodies to the head banging music. This track has Sonu Nigam alone doing the vocal honors for Shahrukh Khan. The song has already started growing on audiences with the promos frequently being aired on various TV channels. The opening flute and violin pieces will remind you of "Kaisi hai yeh rut" from Dil Chahta Hai. However, once you hear Sonu Nigam voicing out Javed Akhtar's meaningful lyrics like "Har ghadi badal rahi hai roop zindagi", you will feel the originality setting in and the song will gradually creep on you with superb musical arrangements and a catchy tune. Since this is the best song of the album and supposedly the most situational song in the movie, it has been composed twice. The opening track (by Sony Nigam) is the happy version while the sad version has Alka Yagnik and Shaan sharing the vocal honors.

However, the next track in the Album is "Maahi Ve" featuring a variety of singers like Sadhna Sargam, Sujata Bhattacharya, Sonu Nigam, Udit Narayan and Shankar Mahadevan (by default)..! This track is a typical party song with a backdrop of lyrics like "Everybody sing" and "Jind Mahi Ve". This one has barely any uniqueness to offer, as it will instantly remind you of "Shava Shava" from Kabhie Khushi Kabhie Gham. Although, the song is quite mediocre and something that we have heard numerous times before, Sujata Bhattacharya's voice renders it a bit different. However, the song is a peppy dance track and should be the next one in promos, as it sounds like a fun song and has all that it takes to be a chart buster for few weeks.

The next track "It's the time to disco" has a very modern-day feel to it and sounds more like a music video (again) and is also sung by Pop divas like Vasundhara Das, Shaan, Kay Kay and Loy of Shankar Eshaan Loy. It's again very perky and plenty of beats have been used to make it sound like a dance number. Incidentally, the "Pretty Woman" by Shankar Mahadevan and Ravi "Rags" Khote is also on similar lines using the same kind of English-Hindi lyrics making it sound very contemporary, but of course, the treatment in terms of utilizing beats and the bass is different. However, there is something very uncannily akin about the two songs.

Up next is, Kuch to hua hai, which is an invigorating and quixotic number with good pace and the song grows on you after you have heard once and you will crave to hear it again. Javed Akther has marvelously penned it and Shaan and Alka Yagnik have delivered their magnificent voices. It is again a trademark soft number, something that we always expect of such mushy love stories. However, one different factor about this one can be Javed Akhtar's very simple yet funky lyrics like "Cheeze mein rakhke bhool jati hoon" "Accha rehta hai Mood bhi tabse" and "Dhyaan ab apna zyaada rakhta hoon" and so on!

The next track is a sad version of the title track "Kal ho na ho", but it initiates with Richa Sharma and Chorus chanting some Punjabi lyrics (a must in Chopra's and Johar's filcks). The song ensues with Alka Yagnik and Sonu Nigam crooning a few lines of explicit emotions that will brilliantly compliment the situation of the song in the movie itself. There are intermittent Punjabi lyrics, but a not so impressive Shehnai that gives the final touch to the song marking the end of this tearjerker!

Then there is Pretty Woman sung by Shankar Mahadevan himself and Ravi "rags" Khote, with Shankar seizing a major part of the cake (ofcourse!). This track is a very mediocre one with barely any novelty to offer.

Overall, the album is worth giving a ear, but whether or not it will recreate the same magic as other such movies have done in the past...only Kal (times to come) will tell. However, with its pristine look and the star power, the songs of KHNH will become popular, music sales will get a boost, as the promos start featuring more prominently, and the release date comes closer.

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   Viewer's Feedback

Its a great unbiased piece of work by raunaq who ever he is, but seems to be a new kid on theblock for good reviews by, I usually depend upon your site for buying music and this time I have got a fair Idea f KHNH''s review...please keep up the good work..raunaq and Glamsham.
- Bineeta Thakker

I think the music of KHNH is good, as i like the songs... Kal ho na ho (title track), Maahi ve and of course, Kuch to Hua Hai... But the only song which is a bit boring is Its time to disco.... Overall I think the songs are quite catchy, once you listen to them u would want to hear it a no. of times
- Kamli

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