Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★
Anurag Basu (Director) has always been associated with quality, melodious soundtracks, case in point: 'Saaya' (2002); 'Murder' (2004); 'Gangster' (2006); 'Life In A Metro' (2007) and 'Kites' (2010). Now, when the deadly combination of Anurag Basu and Pritam Chakraborty (Music Director) join hands for "Barfi!", expectations are humongous to say the least, sole reason being the duo previous venture 'Life In A Metro' which is still considered the best OST from the stable of Pritam till date and more importantly the track 'Ala Barfi ' is already gaining popularity among the listeners. With six originals and 2 reprises, let’s enter the magical world of 'Barfi!'
The title song "Barfi" is mischievous, charming, melodious and one of the cutest song of 2012. Mohit Chauhan is born for such genre and is sparklingly amazing. Come to the lyrics and the ever dependable Swanand Kirkire (S.K) steals the show with some simple yet splendid work that describes the story of the lead protagonist Murphy (Ranbir Kapoor) beautifully. The arrangements are kept simple with minimum use of orchestra that creates a peaceful environment. A flamboyant opening to the soundtrack which will be crucial from the movie's perspective and will be used at various junctures. Must Hear and a chart scorcher for the next one month! To much surprise S.K. himself comes behind the mike for "Ala Barfi Version 2" where the lyricist turned singer does a pretty good job. The arrangements are different at places and one can sense a bit of Shantanu Moitra (Music Director) with various instruments being used innovatively and also it's the way S.K sings, that makes it an interesting hear. Just enjoy this delightful composition without comparing with the original!
Pritam makes his presence felt with the next track "Main Kya Karoon" which is on the same lines as 'I Love You' from 'Bodyguard' but is far more enthralling and engaging. Debutant Nikhil Paul George almost does a 'Ash King' as the song starts but creates his own aura with his innocent and carefree voice which gives a real feeling and not an animated one. A love song which is beautifully interwoven with S.K lyrics that defines the state of being in love with so much ease that one inst. Notice how gracefully Nikhil croons the signature line: 'Is Dil Ka Main Kya Karoon, Mai Kya Karoon, Mai Kya Karoon', especially towards the end of the song. Terrific and yes again a definite Top Ten!
"Kyon" is another fine romantic outing with the sublime vocals of Papon (wonder why such voice is not used to its potential) and Sunidhi Chauhan. It takes you back to the good old days with the 'horse-cart' feel of the 1970's where Neelesh Misra writes some refined situational stuff that will be surely picturised on Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra and indeed would be a treat to watch onscreen.
The find of Pritam, Arijit Singh is one hell of a talent, be it the club number 'Jhoom Jhoom Ta Hu Main' (Players), the ever absorbing 'Raabta' (Agent Vinod) or 'Dua' (Shanghai), he has shown his versatility and hold over all the genre of music..this time he hits the nail on its head with the classical "Phir Le Aaya Dil" (Reprise) which is breathtaking right from the alaap at the start to the tabla - sitaar Jugalbandi to the beautiful piano from 2.30 to 2.50 to Arijit's absorbing voice to S.K.'s poetic painful lyrics, everything is simply terrific! Intoxicating stuff and it will be a sin if you miss this masterpiece by Pritam. To add more depth and quality, one of the finest female vocalist at present, Rekha Bhardwaj has been roped in for the original version "Phir Le Aaya Dil" and what else does one expect from a voice like her..A Majestic composition! The classical/ghazal touch has almost been eliminated in this version but nevertheless..One can't get resist hitting the 'REPEAT' mode.
Charlie Chaplin like Harmonica starts off "Aashiyan" which transports you back to the 1950 to 1970's era. Nikhil Paul George reminds of Benny Dayal at places but is terrific nevertheless and Shreya Ghoshal's mellifluous voice seems to be tailor made for this one. A soft breezy song where S.K takes us on a dream ride with his simple yet effective lyrics. The violin loop in the interlude is dynamically used and the orchestra remains pretty ordinary for the rest of the song but yes its foot tapping and catchy and will grow once the video is out.
Arijit Singh ends the soundtrack on a perfect note with "Saawali Si Raat" that has some hair-raising low (read whispering) notes and lyrics that will touch your heart and leave you gasping for more. S.K's lyrics are the high point in this composition which is beautifully paced with minimum/soft instruments; the piano used in tandem with the vocals is awe-inspiring. Forget everything, plug in your earphones and let yourself transport in a magical world that will leave you in trance and stand still.
"Barfi!" is one of the most original and innocent soundtrack by Pritam Chakraborty where each and every composition will have a crucial impact in taking the movie's narration forward. The songs will look good onscreen and Pritam certainly deserves a pat on his back as it's not an easy task to compose for a movie where the lead protagonist is deaf and dumb, so the songs are the only thoughts and voice we hear through which everything, every feeling, every thought of the protagonist needs to be conveyed. As the movie reaches its release date, the songs will grow where "Phir Se Aaya Dil" and "Saawali Si Raat" will find a crucial spot in the playlist of all the listeners. Don't Worry, Be Barfi!
I rate it a 4.0 on 5.0