Review by : Behindwoods Review Board
Album Release Date : May 31,2013
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Production: Krishika Lulla
Cast: Abhay Deol, Dhanush, Sonam Kapoor
Direction: Aanand L Rai
Screenplay: Aanand L Rai
Story: Aanand L Rai
Music: AR Rahman
Background score: AR Rahman
Cinematography: Natarajan Subramaniam, Vishal Sinha
Dialogues: Anand L. Rai
Editing: Hemal Kothari
Singers: A. R. Rahman, Aanchal Sethi, Anwesha Datta Gupta, Chinmayi, Jaswinder Singh, Javed Ali, K.M.M.C. Sufi Ensemble, Karthik, Keerthi Sagathia, Madhushree, Meenal Jain, Nakash Aziz, Neeti Mohan, Pooja Vaidyanath, Rabbi Shergill, Rashid Ali, Shiraz Uppal, Shreya Ghoshal, Sukhwinder Singh, Vaishali Samant
Lyrics : Irshad Kamil
Distribution: Eros International

Raanjhnaa marks the Bollywood debut of Dhanush as he’s paired opposite Sonam Kapoor. The film is directed by Anand Rai and has him working with A.R.Rahman for the first time. All the songs are written by Irshad Kamil.

Singers: Jaswinder Singh, Shiraz Uppal
Lyrics: Irshad Kamil

The fervor with which the vocals open the tune serves as a preface to the rest of the album. As soon as the song picks up steam, the funky guitar delays come in as a delightful surprise. The galloping percussions keep pace with the effervescent vocal melody. The sitar interlude adds even more spark to a tune that’s already a colorful firecracker. Shiraz Uppal opens up the floodgates with his high ranged vocals and Jaswinder Singh seamlessly rides the musical wave.

Singers: Anwesha Datta Gupta, Meenal Jain, Shreya Ghoshal
Lyrics: Irshad Kamil

Rahman consolidates the cheerful mood with a lively folksy tune often featuring native Hindustani classical instruments like the Sarangi and the Sitar. Again the percussions are uppity and the tempo is upbeat and every time the flute makes an appearance it further takes things up a notch. Shreya Ghoshal comes through so very well with her voice and is precise with her delivery. She’s backed by a sisterly group of singers in Anwesha Datta Gupta and Meenal Jain who are integral and coherent to the tune. The vocal melodies and a memorable hook show that Rahman is at his best. The groovy bassline in the background deserves an honorable mention as well.

Piya Milenge
Singers: K.M.M.C. Sufi Ensemble, Sukhwinder Singh
Lyrics: Irshad Kamil

Sukhwinder Singh begins in restrained fashion in this composition but in due course shows that he can cut loose at will. This contrast makes up the core dynamics of the tune. The tune’s other highlight is the spectacular backing chorus section by the KMMC Sufi Ensemble. The orchestration sees a fine mix of synth driven electronica, Indian percussions and grandiose string arrangements that are all pieced together elaborately to build a sense of tension where all roads lead to a chorus of epic proportions.

Ay Sakhi
Singers: Aanchal Sethi, Chinmayi, Madhushree, Vaishali Samant
Lyrics: Irshad Kamil

Almost instantly you can tell that aspiring singers around the country will be spending hours trying to master this tune. Despite being a test of vocal ability the song is also ingeniously fun. Without a doubt the impression and impact the song makes must be credited to the group of singers featured on this tune, Madhushree, Chinmayi, Vaishali Saman and Aanchal Sethi, each deserving a well earned mention. While the singers threaten to steal the show, the track also features some other highlights such as the change up in percussions and sweet bassline.

Nazar Laaye
Singers: Nakash Aziz, Neeti Mohan, Rashid Ali
Lyrics: Irshad Kamil

A soft acoustic guitar driven tune that employs a rather straightforward approach, still there are moments of unexpected progressions in store for the listener which show that Rahman is clearly not striving for the ordinary even while the plan is to keep it simple. The vocal fills at intervals that top up the tune pleasantly are intelligently used while the singers emote beautifully with their voices.

Tu Mun Shudi
Singers: A. R. Rahman, Rabbi Shergill
Lyrics: Irshad Kamil

An odd collection of sounds make up an interesting groove that has ARR steadily work his magic on. In phases ARR adds elements to the tune all the while as the song takes shape in our heads. Even as the tune trots along there is no knowing how it will transpire in the end but somehow ARR makes it work. The genius composer saves the best part of the tune to himself with the hypnotic chorus while Rabbi changes his avatar for this tune and delivers a noteworthy performance.

Aise Na Dekho
Singers: A. R. Rahman, Karthik
Lyrics: Irshad Kamil

With almost a flick of a switch ARR turns into the coolest jazz cat in town, a far cry from the dark and moody electronic tune that precedes this song. An authentic free flowing jazz tune with all the bells and whistles in place has the backing band is fine form with the nifty note picking on the acoustic guitar, the brush sticks on the drums and the smooth backing vocals. ARR sings this tune with no rush whatsoever and gleefully plays his accordion while at it.

The Land of Shiva
Singers: Instrumental

A short instrumental that builds up a crescendo with thundering percussions. The continuous religious chanting and temple bells set the mood and space for the tune and lives up to the track title.

Tum Tak
Singers: Javed Ali, Keerthi Sagathia, Pooja Vaidyanath
Lyrics: Irshad Kamil

Yet another remarkable song from ARR with a peach of a melody that’s uplifting. The use of the timers is absolutely impeccable and continues to ring in your ears long after the track fades out. One wishes that the Shanhai interlude could have lasted longer. While Javed Ali drives the tune with a superb performance, it’s again the female vocals on this album that prove to be absolutely outstanding, and Keerthi and Pooja contribute to that remark. ARR masterfully orchestrates a nice change up in the middle with the tempo slowing down only to eventually build to a fitting finale of an album that could light up the darkest of places with its resonance.

Verdict: A joyous wonder from Rahman.