Music Review Shortcut Romeo

Himesh Reshammiya is back after a lull of several months. The composer has always generated extreme reactions and in that sense, expectations are both sky-high and very low. Of late, Himesh has chosen to go trendy and yet appeal to the traditional fan base – a tightrope balance he has achieved with fair success.

Himesh Reshammiya can always be relied upon for two things: making a song with raag-daari contemporary and appealing to the modern generation and also never leaving intense melody even for light songs. The tightrope balance is achieved with a fair skill again here with his peppy numbers and the right use of instrumentations, whether it is strings or light percussion or wind instruments or even the mundane and all-purpose keyboard.

The song to die for in this album is the unique 'Khaali Salaam Dua', a number that adds to the ever-growing list of Mohit Chauhan's great tracks since last year in particular. Mohit, sensing a whopper of a melody and chartbuster, sings as if his life depended on it. It is indeed interesting as well as heartening to see this man evolved from a crooner to a terrific playback singer over the years. The instrumental refrain accompanied by the rhythmic clap-like sound and the layered mukhda and Mohit's typical intonation in the line Dooba dil ki jannat mein as it quickly moves back to the mukhda lift the composition.

The song gets almost into Sufi mode as the interlude music progresses into the antaras, with Himesh cleverly using the reverb to create a superb ambience of both reverence and isolation for the singer (the hero) and his beloved. The words (Shabbir Ahmed) are potent, meaningful and the backbone of the strong melody. Mohit's abandon and deceptively casual rendition underscores the beauty of this number.

Manoj Yadav, a new lyricist, shows the stuff he is made of with the peppy (pe pe?) track 'Pe Pe Pe', a fluid melody that begins with an infectious prelude with heavy rhythms. Himesh gets into clean singing sans any of his famous nasal inflection and injects a strong dose of unapologetic fun into his singing.

A potential hit is 'Jave Saari Duniya' (Mika Singh), an ethnic dance extravaganza with oodles of energy and an incredible foot-tapping quotient. Complete with whistles and folk instruments, the ingenious composition sees a seamless rise in pitch as the words 'Jave Saari Duniya' bring the antaras back to the main lines (mukhda) without the conventional 'cross-line'. If Khaali salaam dua was Mohit's ace, this one is Mika's, as he gets into the skin of the composition to be refreshingly different from his norm.

Relentless beats with percussion set the tone for 'Ishq Gangster' (Himesh-Vineet Singh). The lyrics imaginatively compares love with a gangster for the effects it has on lovers! However, the song seems to be more of a dance track rather than something substantial.

The title-track, 'Shortcut Romeo' is the weakest track, and the main version sung by Ash King fails to create an impact. The song is the convoluted mode into which Himesh gets often and loses simplicity. However, its reprise version by Aman Trikha is slightly interesting. Differently arranged and presented, this version is intentionally slower, softer and more melodious, with decent lyrics (Sanjay Masoomm).

The remix versions of 'Pe Pe Pe' and 'Ishq Gangster' are just that – remixes of already fast-paced songs with orchestration for this genre. The latter song is more imaginatively treated with the usual add-on rap and instruments and the main vocal track subdued. The last track, 'Shortcut Romeo Mashup' is catchy and pub-hoppers would find it danceable.

'Khaali Salaam Dua' and to an extent 'Jave Saari Duniya' work, but their future will be dependent on the success or otherwise of the film.

Our Picks
Khaali Salaam Dua, Jave Saari Duniya

Music: Himesh Reshammiya
Lyrics: Manoj Yadav, Shabbir Ahmed, Sameer Anjaan, Sanjay Masoomm
Music label: T-Series

Article written by staff at Bollywood Hungama. Read more


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