Madhur Bhandarkar films always make news. And 'Traffic Signal' is special since it is third in the trilogy of Mumbai centric films made by Bhandarkar after 'Chandni Bar' and 'Page 3'. Reuniting with Shamir Tandon who has composed for 'Page 3' and 'Corporate' in the past, Madhur gets ready with his film that is expected to hit the marquee in 3 weeks from now [February 2nd].
For films belonging to such a genre, it is quite a task to come up with a score that compliments rather than breaking the film's narrative. Hence there are not many expectations of any chartbuster song from the music of 'Traffic Signal' as one only looks forward to a situational soundtrack. Well, situational soundtrack it is which doesn't quite make a thumping impact!
Guest composer Raju Singh is roped in to create 'The Spirit Of Signal' which is a thrilling 2 and a half minutes piece! A western instrumental piece with background vocals adding on the effect, it has an exciting rhythm which is immensely catchy and is sure to ignite the proceedings if placed at the right junctures [read: thrilling/dramatic moments] in the film. Currently on air along with the teaser promo of the film, it never once looks out of place and only aids one in looking forward to the film.
Hariharan gets into the pop mode with 'Yehi Zindagi Hai To Kya Zindagi Hai' which could easily have been presented as a ghazal if composer Shamir Tandon would have opted for it. But instead, he creates it as a philosophical song about life and its essence. Sangeet Haldipur chips in as an additional voice behind Hariharan in this number written by Sameer which is a track for the background score of the film. A number that has a serene feel to it, 'Yehi Zindagi' won't be remembered for weeks after the film is off the theatres but would be liked by those who are fond of Indi-pop/ghazal genre.
When 'Na Jis Din Teri Meri Baat Hoti Hai' begins, it sounds almost like a sequel to 'Yehi Zindagi' due to the way it is composed, arranged and sung. The only place where it differs is its genre as it is a love song. While 'Yehi Zindagi' may appeal to a select segment of audience, 'Na Jis Din' is pure mediocre as Kunal Ganjawala and Yogita Pathak just go through the motions and sing along to an extremely average and beaten to death tune.
There is a repeat version of the song too with veteran singer Bhupinder Singh at the helm but still there is not much to look forward in the song. It won't be wrong to say that 'Na Jis Din' belongs to an instant skip variety as the only area where it succeeds is creating boredom.
Madhur Bhandarkar would have certainly known the way his album had shaped up so far and that could be the reason why his much publicized 'lavani' song makes an appearance next. While Bhavika brings an authentic rustic feel to 'Aai Ga' with a brief appearance in the song's start, middle and the end, Vaishali Samant is the major contributor as she sings with a kind of spirited approach as required by the song.
The right accent, cheers, pauses and much required 'desi' instruments are all in place to make 'Aai Ga' a 'masala' number that has good chances to do well in the Maharashtra belt, though beyond that it looks difficult to be grabbed with both hands by the music lovers. Nevertheless, it should be good fun to watch in the film's situation. Later D J Amelon and Salil Amrute come together to create a western remix version of 'Aai Ga' which could have been made keeping the pub/disc hopping crowds in mind.
Title song 'Signal Pe' comes in the end which is an ensemble piece with Vinod Rathod, Baba Sehgal, Neerja Pandit, Raj Pandit and Navin Prabhakar coming together behind the mike. While Vinod and Baba are the two singers who dominate the proceedings, other singers add on to the 'signal' feel by giving voices for 'taporis', eunuchs, street kids etc. who play an integral part of the film. Narrating the proceedings of what goes on at signals, it is a situational track that should be appearing at number of points in the film. Expect Madhur's direction stamp in full form when this song is on.
Rest of the album is made of bonus songs in the form of Kailash Kher's 'Dilruba' and 'Albela Saajan' [Kailasa], Jagjit Singh & Gulzar's 'Haath Chhute Bhi To Rishtey Nahi Chhuta Karte' and 'Din Kuch Aise Guzarta Hai', Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan's 'Tere Bin Nahin Lagda' and Ustad Sultan Khan & Chitra's 'Piya Basanti'. No doubt, a good addition to the album, especially for those who like their music to be non-filmy and semi-classical.
If one looks back at the songs of 'Traffic Signal', one doesn't quite take much back home. With an exception of 'Aai Ga' that may do well selectively, there is not much about the film's soundtrack that remains with a music follower. In the end, what works is the situational feel to the music [at most places, thought not all!] that should keep up the pace with the film.