5 Excellent

Love Aaj Kal

I had completely lost faith in Pritam after his Billu, in which most of the songs churned out were plain mediocre, save for a few which made an impact, but never really registered for repeat value. Well, for the fans of Billu, I'm not saying the album was plain bad, but the expectations generated from Pritam were humungous, due to the back to back hits he had churned out in 2008 (remember Singh is Kinng, Jannat, Race, Kismat Konnection, and Golmaal Returns?). Cut to his first post-strike release, New York. Pritam again got back his fan following in me, even though people think wrong about him due to the "NALURI LELAKI" Samsons controversy. A few albums later comes the biggest musical release of this year so far, mainly because of the humungous expectations generated for it. Yes, I am talking about the music of none other than LOVE AAJ KAL, easily one of the most awaited music releases so far. While New York has set the cash registers ringing and Kambakkht Ishq, the other most awaited release, has musically made an impact, it is now the turn of the Imtiaz Ali/Pritam Chakraborty/Irshad Kamil team of the music of Love Aaj Kal that has suddenly made all the reviewers ask all sorts of questions : Will it surpass the benchmark created by the same team in Jab We Met? Will it meet the expectations of the audiences? Will the audiences get what they heard in the trailers? Well? What is the answer?

The answer is pretty simple. A BIG YES, ensuring that the soundtrack will only add up to the hype and promotion generated for the movie.

Let's start right from the start, and the "start" is none other than the blockbuster opening to the album. Aptly titled Twist, this is a wonderfully fresh "twist" to Hemant Trivedi's legendary tune. Neeraj Sridhar is at his best, teaming up, yet again with Pritam for a chartbuster track that will be the addiction of the youth in times to come. Irshad Kamil's lyrics pertain largely to the theme of the song, (which comes in an amazingly sounding remixed version) and it helps in making the song the luscious chartbuster that it is now.

Let's now get a little relaxed, as the next outing to come is Chor Bazaari, which, yet again, strikes a chord and elevates the position of the album to new heights. This whole song is given a very Vishal-Shekhar feel, with a nagging feel that you heard this somewhere in some R. D. Burman composition, be it the guitar, or the pads, or the beats - it has a fun feel which one can associate with either the music duo or this legendary musician. Neeraj Sridhar yet again returns with this song, supported aplty by Sunidhi Chauhan, making a track that would make anyone feel happy at anytime they switch the track on. A winner all the way, this composition also returns as a remixed version, which has immense repeat value. Respect to the DJ/producers (DJ Sanj, DJ Phukan) who have come up with amazing remixes to the soundtrack.

Those opening guitar strings (that have also appeared in the start of the amazing theatrical promo that we all have seen) have made us restless to hear the whole song. And well, here it is, with loads of attitude thrown in, with amazing vocals by Salim Shehzada, (who has given us chartbusters like Mast Kalandar from Heyy Babyy, Tashan Mein from Tashan, and of late, Maa Da Laadla from the super-stylish comedy Dostana), supported by Suzanne D'Mello (also known as Suzie Q) and, yet again(?) by Neeraj Sridhar. Though Sridhar is repeated for the third time in a row in the album, back to back, he doesn't sound at all boring or monotonous, as each song shows a different aspect of Sridhar. Well, the song (also appearing in another mindblowing remix that has the soul and beauty still intact) is called Aahun Aahun, and creates a hattrick of the best tracks so far, which have already become an addiction.

Moving away from foottapping, fun and Neeraj Sridhar(?), we get a very romantic outing with Mohit Chauhan (of Tum Se Hi fame) coming back to croon for Pritam after the super-sensitive Tune Jo Na Kaha from New York. Tiled Dooriyan, this song has a slight hint of sadness to it, as the lyrics suggest, but make for the most irrestible hear, yet again. Pritam scores a four this time, making the fourth best song in this album, without any mistakes. A big wow going to Mohit Chauhan, who has given his most sensitive vocal touch to this song. Pritam's arrangements, and the mixing is just perfect. Pritam has been sensible enough not to put a remix for this song, but who knows, this remix would also have made waves like the other three. Hats off to Pritam, Mohit Chauhan and Irshad Kamil for such a beautiful track.

The game's not over, and Pritam's winning streak continues with another sensitive song, this time with master singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan behind the mike this time. Irshad weaves magic in his lyrics this time, with a Punjabi song that touches your heart to the core. Pritam's music is enchanting and will make you hear it again and again in times to come. Pritam scores a five.

The next song makes for an unexpected hear, but then again, you surely WILL be hooked to it once you hear it carefully. One of the most different "sangeet" songs to come up in recent times, Sunidhi Chauhan does an amazing job behind the mike, propering every nuance for the "sangeet" to strike the right emotions. Though not everyone's cuuppa tea, it should be, considering Imtiaz Ali's picturization will hook the viewers onto the song. Pritam scores a six.

And the grand finale! Krishna Kumar Kunnath (or K. K.) on the vocals of this irrestible techno track with meaningful lyrics. I deem it to be the best song of the album, mostly because of the fact that I can relate to it's lyrics so well, it makes me think. PRITAM SCORES A SEVEN!

Overall, this album should do really really well, and also outdo the musical sales of Jab We Met perhaps. Who knows, this will also become another musical as well as box office succes for Imtiaz Ali, making it a hattrick for him.... only time will tell now. Pritam, take a bow. You have shown us your mettle in this album, and will probably continue to show us similar mettle in your future albums. Irshad, your lyrics rock, and you should be proud of this album, and I mean it.