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MUSIC REVIEW OF BANARAS
MUSIC REVIEW OF BANARAS

By Satyajit - Eye TV India Bureau

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The pious religious ambience is galore in grace as holy chants grow loud in the divine city of Banaras. The magic and radiance of this city is glorified through the lens of director Pankaj Parasher in 'Banaras - A Mystic Love Story'. Bollywood's oomph girl Urmila Matondkar strikes back with brilliance in this devotional love saga shot exclusively in Banaras. The film comes with mixed package of veteran and new acting talents. The star cast comprises Ashmit Patel, Dimple Kapadia, Raj Babbar and Naseeruddin Shah. The film is about Shwetambari's (Urmila Matondkar) struggle against the age-old orthodox caste system of the society. The film is expected to be experimental in terms of innovative filmmaking and narration. 'Banaras -- A Mystic Love Story' is produced by L.C Singh and has nine original soundtracks. The music of the film is designed to generate adulation and devotion for the city. The music can be heard on Sony Music.

Himesh Reshammiya is with mike again and this time it's without "nasal" alaap and Sufi styled singing as he sings "Kitna Pyar Karte Hain". It may be coincidence but the song sounds similar to "Bahut Pyar Karte Hain" ('Saajan') and recently heard "Kyunki Itna Pyar Karte Hai" ('Kyun Ki'). Reshammiya adopts the RD Burman style of musical arrangements and percussions rather than relying on contemporary Pakistani pop music. The slow and tender voice is well supported with fine piano notes and effective guitar strings in the background. This may sound an emotional track but this impresses to a great extent. The singing and musical display adds another color to Reshammiya's music pattern and style. This soundtrack gets second innings in the album as talented Alka Yagnik sings the female version. This version speaks the feminine heart felt emotions. Sameer's lyrics are well executed though they may sound repetitive at many places. A decent soundtrack in both versions and deserves to be heard in lonely time. Himesh Reshammiya's branded style of music shines bright in the conventional mushy love soundtrack "Ishq Mein Dil Ko". Shreya Ghoshal's silky and soft touch mesmerizes the lovable emotions with perfectly blended voice of Sonu Nigam. Sameer's impressive lyrics come in typical "shaayari" style emanating the radiance of everlasting love. It may remind Reshammiya's earlier conceived tracks where he sings in the background. Sonu Nigam's soft and modulating voice sparkles as this soundtrack is repeated in the second version. If the first version has the opening with Shreya's voice then the second has Sonu singing first. It may not be chartbusting success but the composer Reshammiya shines for the second time in succession.

Colorful, zestful and vibrant flavors of "Holi" come in an intoxicating mood in the soundtrack "Rang Daalo". In the past, "Holi" numbers were rare but in the changing scenario the festivals and such occasions are being spotlighted and it shows in this soundtrack. Sonu Nigam along with Shreya Ghoshal sings this "festive" number with the backdrop of traditional folk music. The words are spiced up to sprinkle colorful ambience and it shows as the song progresses. An effective "Holi" number after some lackluster "Holi" soundtracks was heard in 'Mangal Pandey' and 'Waqt'. This song has been on air as promotional soundtrack with stars like Urmila, Ashmit, Dimple Kapadia and Raj Babbar painting town red with "Holi" colors. The soundtrack comes in folk version as folk singer Sailesh joins Sonu Nigam in rhythm and style. This version has additional traditional "Holi" folk verses sung in a vociferous way. It's delightful to hear that the trendy music composers metaphor the spirit of Banaras culture with optimum packaging of traditional musical work.

The holy chants of "Om Namah Shivaya", creates an ambience of spirituality as they make striking presence in religiously pious and sanctimonious sentiments in the highly spirited soundtrack "Purab Se". It's about devotion to Lord Shiva sung mellifluously in the pristinely syrupy voice of Shreya Ghoshal. The free flowing vocals are supported with brief classical singing in the background and effective musical arrangements. The song brings the nostalgia felt through the radiance of glowing sun, frolicking dance of peacocks and fresh whiff of fresh air in worshipping Lord Shiva. Sameer's lyrics are immaculately divine and coated with high degree of spirituality. The song encores devotion towards Lord Shiva with the deity's adulation and worshipping by chanting "Om Namah Shivaya". Simply Brilliant!

A brief rendition of Indian classical music comes in the voice of Pranab Kumar in the soundtrack "Bajuband Khul Jaaye". This appears to be traditional "mujra" number that caters to the classical music lovers. It's brief but yet effective and should work well in the film.

The adulation of religious city of Banaras makes thunderous presence in the concluding soundtrack "Yeh Hai Shaan Banaras Ki". The song epitomizes the grandeur of city that has witnessed the presence of great Holy souls in the past. Classical singer Sanjay Abhyankar sings this sanctimonious soundtrack in the conventional as well as through the classical style of singing. A great treat for classical music lovers that sums up the beauty and grace of Banaras. The singer has been excellent in generating desired enthusiasm while singing lyrics enriched with divine "sholaks" and verses. The high-pitched music is effective in generating impulse, passion and devotion for the Holy city. The soundtrack has been thematically conceived with thunderous chants of "Har Har Mahadev" in striking ways. It also adulates the great religious literary work of saints like Kabir, Vyas, Tulsidas besides emanating religious sentiments for deities. In short, it's a great musical work by all standards and should uplift the sentiments delivered through the film.

Himesh Reshammiya shows different and impressive fa├žade of his musical genius with some finely executed soundtracks in 'Banaras - A Mystic Love Story'. The composer-turned-singer has been a rage in the pop world but in this album he delivers some highly refined classical music in style. The album should find admiration from classes who crave for genuine quality music. A great musical work!

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