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Music Review : Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey

 Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey
Director :
Music :
Lyrics :
Starring :
 Ashutosh Gowariker
 Sohail Sen
 Javed Akhtar
 Abhishek Bachchan, Deepika Padukone, Sikandar Kher and Vishakha Singh

By Abid, Glamsham Editorial Send to Friend



There was a time when the launch of any music album from director perfectionist Ashutosh Gowariker was considered as an event of epic proportions and the reason behind the big demand for the albums was God's very own gift to music, Allah Rakha Rahman (A.R.Rahman), who used to be the constant factor in all Gowariker films. Be it LAGAAN, SWADES or JODHAA AKBAR; the Ashutosh-Rahman-Javed Akhtar team regaled music lovers with music and songs par excellence and till today those memorable numbers are sung in almost all reality shows and are popular even amongst the casual, common and occasional music fans!

Needless to add that when it comes to composing music for period films Rahman is the best in business but he got busy due to his international/Hollywood assignments and so Ashutosh turned to young composer, Sohail Sen, who had done a wonderful job earlier in Ashutosh's last release, WHAT'S YOUR RAASHEE? However, KHJJS is huge period film and the music required will be of a different mood, setting and flavour. Let us see whether Sohail's relatively inexperienced shoulders would be able to carry the huge expectations that always arise from any album from the house of Ashutosh Gowariker and it will also be interesting to see whether or not Sohail will be able to carry forward the excellent work done by the maestro A.R Rahman in Ashutosh's earlier films. Let's plug in and get going!

'Sitar' and 'Veena', just the right Hindustani musical instruments to get one into the patriotic mode, commence the first song of the album, "Yeh Des Hai Mera" superbly sung by Sohail himself. The 'raaga' based track has heavy Bengali Rabindra Sangeet influence that is so very heartwarming and absolutely necessary as the film itself is set in erstwhile Bengal. Sohail uses his contemporary knowledge of music as well and in the end we have a superbly composed inspirational number that will surely find use as a haunting background score amidst some pensive and thought provoking moments. Superb use of instruments like the 'rubab', 'veena' harmonium, 'sitar' etc lend the song that authentic period touch and transports one into the thirties. The Rahman type crescendo which comes as the main chorus is delightful and the USP of the song along with the instrumental 'Vande Mataram' . Javed Sahab's lyrics reflect the emotions and determination of the revolutionaries, simple, effective and elegant.

Patriotism gives way to fun and frolic as the second song "Naiyn Tere" appears, set in the same corridor as Mukesh-Lata's "Bol Gori Bol Tera Kaun Piya" (MILAN). A full of mischief, naughty number where two young girls engage into casually teasing about their love and once again Sohail's inspiration from Bengal takes the form of a sweet sounding composition (quite evident in the last portions). The 'chhed-chhad' (digs) takes place via lots of questions and cross questions . Lyricist, Javed Akhtar needs to be complemented for this very interesting setting by penning words that indeed sum up the exact feelings and almost sound like a conversation between two friends, keeping the retro style in mind. Pamela Jain and Ranjini Jose, the two lead singers sing well in tandem and lend emotions to their rendition.

Naiyn Tere" sad version has Pamela Jain going solo and it's a slow mostly instrumental version of the same song ( in most parts she hums the song) although some new music orchestrations have been added.

It was just a matter of time and the motivational anthem song that we were awaiting heralds itself in the form of the title track, "Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey". Sung by the highly trained classical singers of Suresh Wadkar's reputed Ajivasan Music Academy, the composition has the right blend of classy music orchestrations, flowing tune, excellent chorus rendition and superbly crafted lyrics by the master of patriotic numbers, Javed Akhtar. "Aandhi uthe aage toofan aaye, Ab chahe koi bhi parwan aaye, Leke hatheli par hum jaan aaye". Patriotism, emotions and the grit and determination of the teenage revolutionaries are depicted through some highly energetic and exuberant singing. The 'josh' that was required is certainly there and it is helped by some lively orchestrations, scintillating flute display and whistling tune and also the 'tabla'. Music maestro A.R.Rahman has composed quite a number of patriotic songs and naturally Sohail uses the master's style as an inspiration but that's about all as overall the composition is uniquely Sohail Sen and no doubt with the right amount of promotion by music giants T-Series, this song should become an anthem like quite a few patriotic numbers before.

A stirring 'sitar' display commences "Sapney Salone", a beautiful love duet by Sohail and Pamela Jain, and it will not be an exaggeration to say that this romantic track stands in the league of Ashutosh-Rahman-Javed's "Jashn-E-Bahara" (JODHAA AKBAR). The reason being the absolutely haunting 'raaga' that Sohail uses along with some superb light classical singing by the lead singers, and last but not the least the refreshing Hindustani musical instruments that provide just the picture perfect setting for a highly romantic outing. Sohail conquers the crests and troughs with perfect ease and shows his mastery over his vocals and is equally well supported by Pamela, whose sugary sweet vocals are a delight. The 'antara' is the most beautiful part of the song and uniqueness of the song is that it never follows a similar route or a tune and there is surprise awaiting in every part.



And if "Yeh Des Hai Mera" and the title track were not enough to whip up the patriotic fervour, here's the number that will surely get one further into the nationalistic mode and the song is none other than, "Vande Mataram", the anthem that became the voice of the freedom fighters. Superbly translated from Sanskrit to Hindi (only the first line in Sanskrit is retained) for the convenience of all, the lyrics abound with love for mother India and it's natural bounties and are amazing. "He janani maa bharti, Tu nahin sahas harti, Jag karta teri aarti". Kudos to the lyricist Javed Akhtar ! As for the song what can one write when words just fall short of singing praises for this iconic number . Cine Singers Association Chorus Group rendition of this version of "Vande Mataram" is absolutely spellbinding. Energy oozes with patriotic zeal and their fervour matches those of the freedom fighters who used the phrase to pump up emotions, so very often during their freedom struggle. And all credit to the composer who has really worked hard in providing his own brilliant inputs into the iconic track so that it becomes all the more contemporary and universally appealing. A must hear for all.
The instrumental version of "Vande Mataram" is the theme piece complete with drill and march past sounds and superb piano and keyboards display along with chorus humming giving one the complete feel of the movie and freedom movement of the revolutionaries.

For those discerning audience that loves instrumental there are as many as seven (if we include "Vande Mataram" and "Naiyn Tere-Sad") full-fledged delightful pieces, programmed and arranged by Simaab Sen that are a collectors item all right!

The first is "Long Live Chittagong" , a travelogue kind of instrumental. The start with 'Veena/ Rudra Veena" followed by 'tabla' and traveling rhythm and the 'sitar' interlude which glorifies the lighter version of the title track "Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey" is a sheer bliss.

This is followed by the aptly titled "Teenager's Whistles" which as the title suggests relies heavily on whistling sounds with heavy dosage of harmonica, predominantly flute notes and one can also sense the use of accordion. The title track instrumental too finds a place in the scheme of things.

The lively mood gets somber with the next instrumental "Suriya's Sorrow" which starts with plucking string notes, superb use of flute and a sedate orchestra to signify the sad state of affairs in the life of the lead protagonist Suriya Sen.

Perhaps the best instrumental of all , with regards to massive orchestral arrangements is " The Escape" and as can be gauged from the title it's a heady, racy rhythm with simulated horse hoof sounds of the revolutionaries escaping from the clutches of the British troops. The hectic pace picks up even more dramatically as the full on orchestra comes into play and it's right here that the composer/arranger showcases his knowledge of western classical with just the right fusion of rhythm and orchestra to highlight the tense situation. It may well be used as a definite background score and add 'chaar chand' and drama to the action sequences.

Lastly we have the "Revolutionaries Comrades", a superb instrumental version of the first song, "Yeh Des Hai Mera", which starts with piano notes followed by chorus humming which forms major part. In between the pace picks up dramatically with a scintillating display of philharmonic orchestra, gushing stream and horns and the amalgamation of these with humming chorus is simply exhilarating.

Indeed director perfectionist Ashutosh Gowariker has managed to bring out the real creative side of the young composer who has shown his vast repertoire and in depth knowledge of Hindustani as well as western classical music in the album. It's not often that one is intentionally or un-intentionally compared to music maestro A. R. Rahman but Sohail not only does a superb job but comes out with flying colours with help from the programmer and arranger (read Simaab Sen). All the songs are classy as Sohail has stuck to the theme of the movie; the only hitch here is whether they will be mass appealing. Our picks are, "Yeh Des Hai Mera", the title track, "Sapney Salone" and "Vande Mataram"-The Revised Sanskrit to Hindi version and all the instrumentals. Certainly this is a must buy album for the connoisseurs of good music.

Rating - 4/5

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