There are some music albums where it is virtually impossible to dream of any commercial gains. I Am Kalam is one of them. With largely unknown names in front or behind the camera, a bunch of new composers who don't quite have chartbusters to their names and an unconventional theme and genre of the film, I Am Kalam doesn't quite make you sit up and get all excited about what those eight songs have to offer here.
K.K. kick-starts the album with 'Chand Taare' which is about a bunch of children making merry with what life has to offer to them. A situational track, it is composed by Abhishek Ray with lyrics by Manavendra who takes a poetic approach. Though the song is well tuned, it doesn't quite have much appeal for a wider audience. It is repeated in a 'children' version where Mansi leads the pack along with other chorus singers. This one actually sounds better than the earlier version since coming together of a bunch of children only adds to the theme and mood.
Abhishek and Manavendra combine again to create 'Chini Bhini' which has an English beginning before Shreya Ghoshal joins in. With a Western base to it, 'Chini Bhini' is about cherishing what life has to offer. Though it does have an A.R. Rahman inspiration to it, it appears to be purely coincidental due to the setting that the song boasts of. Yet another situational number which sounds pleasant but isn't really the kind that one really takes home.
There is an elaborate musical piece at the beginning of 'Rang Jamale' before 'Javed Ali' joins the proceedings. A celebration number that has 'dhol beats' accompanying it, it actually makes one remember many a track of the same genre that has come from the house of Yash Raj Films. Put to tune by newcomer Madhuparna who ropes in lyricist Salil Vaidya for this song, 'Rang Jamale' is a decent track that arrives again in a female version with Anoushka Manchanda as the lady entrusted for the job.
Another newcomer, Papon, contributes as a composer and singer for 'Zindagi Aisi Waisi' which is written by Protique Mojoomdar. In fact his voice comes so close to that of Mohit Chauhan that one ends up checking the credit details all over again to make sure if it is indeed Papon who is responsible for the track. Having said that, though his voice and singing style come close to that of Mohit, musically the song ends up being just about situational and doesn't quite make you long to check it out all over again.
A track with a folk flavour to it, 'Jeevan Ek Rangoli', comes next which is composed and sung by Susmit Bose. This is one track which has a very niche audience for it, the kind which longs for a kind of tune that doesn't quite fall under Bollywood formula of music making and instead aims at being rooted to the film's theme and setting. Expectedly, the results of this Kishor written song aren't the kind that would make everyone jump with joy. Ditto for Shivji Dholi composed, written and sung 'Udan Pe Baitho - Unplugged', last track in the album, which is also the shortest of the lot with a running length of mere 150 seconds.
I Am Kalam wasn't expected to be a musical and the results are just in line with the expectations. Since the soundtrack is entirely theme based and doesn't really cater to a widespread audience, it is a tough task ahead for the soundtrack to make any impression whatsoever on the stands.
Chand Taare - Children, Chini Bhini