Dostana (2008) - Music Review

Cast : John Abraham, Priyanka Chopra, Kiron Kher, Abhishek Bachchan
Directed by : Tarun Mansukhani
Producer : Yash Johar, Karan Johar
Music Director : Vishal Dadlani, Shekhar Ravjiani
Lyricist : Vishal Dadlani, Kumaar, Anvita Dutt Guptan
Release Date : 14 November 2008

DHARMA PRODUCTIONS and Karan Johar are the names that have stood confidently as reliable ''blue-chip'' entertainers for decades and DOSTANA comes out as their latest and solitary entry of this year. Hailed as a prospective blockbuster, it boasts of an array of A-list actors with astronomical production values that can deliver out the most happening locales of the world on silver screen. After making great chemistry with triumphant trio Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy (KAL HO NA HO, KABHI ALVIDA NA KEHNA), baton has shifted to another successful contemporary Vishal-Shekhar (V-S) for this peppier friendly saga. It's a challenging transition but still V-S is one promising entity that have been reigning charts with their livelier compositions for last few years. Despite its hi-profile and huge expectations, all eyes will be on its melodic contents as all previous DHARMA PRODUCTIONS ventures have been consequentially high (rather trendsetting) in their quality and standards. Will this be another ''music meeting contents'' emotional paradigm? Do find this out!
Karan Johar goes Farhan Akhtar's way in trying to create a lively ''Dil Chahta Hai'' type of male-bonding of wining, dining and fun-frolicking ways in perky sounding ''Jane Kyun''. Vishal Dadlani shed his crooner iconic tastes and softens to the mood that well describes the frothy companionship in exotic locales in his subtle baritones. Anvita Dutt Guptan's bubbly wording is westernized to core in its deliverance and sounds like another inspiring advertisement jingle. Vishal-Shekhar (V-S) music tries to build picturesque beach music with enthralling backdrop of thriving percussive elements and keyboards notes. This song that could well have been credited as ''I'll be all right'' comes out as front-runner among musical offerings for epitomizing the ''yuppie'' feel of the flick. It's likely to be one big highlight in chartbusters in coming days and its well coordinated conceptualization on big screen will further be appreciating its commercial prospects.
''Pretty Woman'' (KAL HO NA HO), ''Small town girl'' (BACHNA AE HASEENO) and now ''Desi Girl''! Shanker Mahadevan shows his immaculate specialization in girl wooing soundtracks by vocally emoting out all histrionics that well marks the arrival of another winner in ''Desi Girl''. V-S makes it a ''disco-bhangra'' listening treat where bombastic ''bhangra'' beats collages with rapturous flow of disco beat fillers. There's not as much innovation in its composition or in Kumaar's lyrics but the sprightly pumped arrangements have the thump to make booty shake on floors. Sunidhi Chauhan's added feminine oomph adds spicy touches in making it party-loving ''bhangra'' beat culture soundtrack. On the big screen, one can expect it to be another ''It's time to disco'' (KAL HO NA HO'') or ''Where's the party tonight'' (KABHI ALVIDA NA KEHNA) where all three lead players dance out to these set of frivolous rhythms and tunes.
''Maa Da Ladla'' marks the arrival of prankster song that has its strong base in intrinsically Punjabi music with loads of humorous suggestive impressions. It's a song that lampoons out a soon-to-be wedded spoilt groom in hilarious punches that are well penned by Kumaar in folksy flair. Bali Brahambhatt's popular track ''Amma Dekh Tera Munda'' (STUNTMAN (1994) had the similar flavor of teasing-pleasing but this one has more rustic and ethnic touches, one that was last experienced in ''Bhootni Ke'' (SINGH IS KINNG). Saleem's upcoming voice has the Punjabi booming impulse but still its cinematic view will be more engrossing and appealing. After hot-stopper on floors ''Lucky Boy'' (BACHNA AE HASEENO), V-S charges up with another hot trailblazing hip-shaking soundtrack in ''Shut up and bounce''. A racy and pulsating disco-dancing track by Sunidhi Chauhan works primarily on typical Karan Johar's musical moods, analogous in composition to tracks like ''It's time to disco'' (KAL HO NA HO). Shilpa Shetty is all set to make svelte ''n'' sensuous presence and likely to be one bright spot in encouraging glam-quotient of this ''dosti'' special flick. Anvita Dutt Guptan's ''Hinglish'' wording in peppier tones infuses feminine grace but arrangements sounds routine in their rigorous punches.
Somber Sufi overtones in mushy English chorals and embellished with smoothening arrangements makes way for album's mesmerizing soulful outcry in ''Khabar Nahi''. Amanat Ali's penetrative vocals make a resounding impact in his modulating pitches that concocts to the subtle-paced orchestrations. It's Anvita Dutt Guptan's meaningful and modest phraseology that emanates supple emotions with ease. Shreya Ghoshal's brief mellifluous inclusion in the latter phases is like fresh whiff of air that permeates in this syrupy sounding composition and gives it edgy touches. V-S succeeds to great extent in matching step-to-step S-E-L's beautiful composition ''Kuch to Hua Hai'' (KAL HO NA HO) but the feel is western cum Sufi in its rendition. Mushy ambience, flashy camerawork and slick choreographic edges are likely to be adding grace to it in making it as one of the most lovable sentimental tracks of this year.
After hearing mellowed sentimental title tracks in Karan Johar's last few ventures like KAL HO NA HO and KABHI ALVIDA NA KEHNA, it was all expected to have a soulful romantic semblance track like ''Kuch Kum'' in the album. It may be bit coincident that it sounds shades similar to Shaan's successful Indi-Pop track ''Aksar'' (Album -AKSAR) in its compositions as well as in arrangements but the soulful feel is alluring. Shaan leads this track from the front in his remarkable voice that brings out a feel of romanticism in melodic contours of subtle piano drills, mesmerizing keyboard notes and soft wind chimes. Vishal Dadlani's expressively penetrative lyrical flows can be adjudged as the ''best'' work in the album and rightfully delivers nostalgic romantic moments with supple ease. In terms of composition, it fails to be as resounding like ''Kal Ho Na Ho'' (KAL HO NA HO) but can well be accounted as one of the brightest and most impressive solo ballad of this year. After repetitive hearing of this nostalgic-feel track, one really falls for its charms and Shaan's scintillating voice that works like magic in somber tones.
Vishal-Shekar (V-S) makes another ''Dostana'' with their enthusiastic fan-following by delivering out a reasonably pleasant album that correlates to the feel of this hi-profile flick. Unlike last few Karan Johar albums, DOSTANA may not be enjoying higher shelf life but will surely be hitting charts in coming days. Massy soundtracks like ''Jane Kyun'' and ''Desi Girl'' are likely to be emerging out winners in short span while soulful tracks like ''Khabar Nahi'' and ''Kuch Kum'' will be getting appreciation for its classy feel.