KAHAANI music review: A rocking soundtrack with a Bengali flavour

Music: Vishal-Shekhar

Lyrics: Vishal Dadlani, Anvita Dutt and Sandeep Shrivastava

Rating: 4/5

Vishal-Shekhar get the chance to explore a different territory and they make the most of the opportunity

After rendering music for several romcoms and big budget flicks like RA.One, Vishal-Shekhar have found a perfect opportunity in Kahaani, which allows them to work on the melodies freely without having to worry too much about the commercial value of the songs.

The album has a strong Bengali flavour since the film is based in Kolkata and the tracks are situational. The strongest song in the album is Shotti bolchi. Last year Usha Uthup shone with Darling from 7 Khoon Maaf, and Shotti bolchi is a fitting follow-up to that one. Uthup is in top form and in her comfort zone as she sings this energetic heavy metal number. She gets great support from Vishwesh Krishnamurthy, the lead singer of the metal band Scribe, giving the song a fresh vibe. An ode to Kolkata, this is the best in the album.

Next up is a track that will totally surprise you. Can you imagine the fusion of the manjira and an electric guitar? Vishal-Shekhar have used the two beautifully in Piya tu kaahe rootha re. Pakistani singer Javed Bashir’s powerful alaaps and his harkats to the hard-core electric guitar and the manjira constantly ringing in the background make this song stand out.

The title track Kahaani is soft and is composed with the idea of evoking the nostalgia that you feel when you come to a city that has several memories attached to it. It describes the sound of taxi wheels, tram bells and the dreamy streets in the simplest manner. The song has two versions – one sung by KK and the other by Shreya Ghosal. KK’s version is fast-paced and groovy, while Shreya’s moves slowly, one guitar strum at a time. Both are equally good, and I hope that both find a place in the film.

Sukhwinder Singh has a song that does justice to the high pitch and high energy singing he is good at. Tore bina speaks of longing and of day dreaming about the moment when a lover will be back. It doesn’t sound like a Vishal-Shekhar song and that is a great achievement for the music directors, because it makes you believe that this duo hasn’t stopped experimenting.

But the composers have one more ace up their collective sleeve with the last song on the album – Ekla chalo re. It sure is a huge challenge to rework a song like this one, which has great historical significance and has been sung and composed by several music artistes at different points in time. The patriotic song written by Rabindranath Tagore is a poem composed to the tune of the famous Bengali dhapkirtan. Vishal-Shekhar’s version has a mix of English, Hindi and Bengali lyrics, and it’s done quite aesthetically. Getting Amitabh Bachchan to sing it was probably the best creative decision; his voice suits the tone of this track perfectly. The song says that if no one is willing to support you and if people are too scared to join you, don’t be discouraged, but continue to walk alone. The song fits the theme of Kahaani and has been used beautifully.

Vishal Dadlani, Anvita Dutt and Sandeep Shrivastava, who have worked on the lyrics of this album, add a zing to all the songs. It is not a soundtrack that will be as popular as it should be, considering its musical quality. But that doesn’t take away from the fact that it rocks.