Highway : Music Review

Patakha Guddi (Female) - the very first release from the album which I fell in love with, instantly. Nooran sisters (Jyoti and Sultana) who rocked in Sound Trippin', gets a fabulous bollywood debut with this song. The odd sounds, of strings, sounds actually good over the time. And the 'clap' like theme that is present throughout the track, marks surprising presence in two other tracks too. Maybe it symbolises the continued journey of characters. What makes you fall in love is the words. Maine to tere utte chhadiyaan doriyaan ! As if she and the almighty has become one, so much that she need not worry of anything coming her way. And the same tune, goes startling makeover and ends the track with fab humming by ARR. Lovely. This is again after Phir se udd chala (almost) where we do not have the first stanza getting repeated.

And the same formula is used in Mahi Ve as well. First lines stay at first only. And doesn't get repeated. Even more (sweet) surprise is how the track ends without the tune with which the track starts. A song, perfect for journeys, objects passing by your window, and soaked in the musical journey. (personally, love to shout-out along with while riding bike) Irshad Kamil's words get perfect voice as ARR sings this wonderfully penned song. (Don't know why ppl finding the tune average!). Ah, and the last stanza where he sounds so different, backed by trademark violins, and brilliant words. Goosebumps - meri khamoshiyon mein hai tu bolta - and first class concluding violins. Sigh.

Kahaan Hoon Main : this, despite being 'heard before' Rahman song, took time to grow on me. Jonita Gandhi's lovely crooning perfectly creates picture of a girl, lost in her thoughts, in a new world. Alongwith lovely background of piano, loved how the song rises from 1: 40. Tunewise it reminds me of Kahin To (JTYJN). Soothing listen this one is. (Wondering if Jonita has sung any other songs or this is the debut?)

Wanna Mash Up : When I first read the title, instantly thought came to mind about mashed-up songs. (blame it on Tseries). Thankfully though, this is totally different than what I expected. 'Shout it out loud' it says. And it is - a track worth it. Dubstep induced rap by Kash, krissy and Suvi, instantly takes you to Endhiran. Even at one place you go and sing 'r u just a robo toy'.. Despite, this one - is so much fun.

Sooha saaha : Lauded as Alia's debut as singer. I was a little apprehensive about this one. Not a fan of her at all (and I know that fact is going to be changed after watching her Ali-powered performance, oh and I won't say a bit about autotune, as I am technically illiterate ;)) Beautiful humming start and minimal arrangement - vintage Rahman ! Zeb excellently put her voice in a continued manner, without a pause. And in second stanza, you realize why ARR chose Alia to sing. Childlike innocence reflects here, which was required by the song. By the time the track reaches its climax, those silent violins makes it altogather a serene experience. (At places it reminded me of Sakhi Piya - Khoya Khoya Chand, same Raga maybe?)

Patakha Guddi (Male version) : Sweet surprise how this one starts. I thought - if the first version is so perfect then how different another version can be? But Rahman proved me wrong.  (Only later I knew that this - is the original version that was planned for the film, and later on he chose Nooran sisters as the story is about a girl !). At first listen, honestly I found his pronounciations really funny, that I even tweet OMG what is this ? But by the time the track progressed - and you know how he adds his variations. His trademark crooning - here 'ali ali' + new stanza in between +  big rocking surprise + how it comes gradually to main tune + the 'Jugni rukh peepal da hoi' stanza (especially how he says 'koi' in Ghar bhi rakh sake na koi), saai re... o mere saaiyaaan, maine to tere tere utte chhadiyaan doriyaan. Gosh, there is so much to love in this track. (That complaint about his pronounciation goes invisible by the time I repeat this every time, finding new layers in just one song). Still, I so wish if Rahman had sung it as a duet, with Sukhi or Kailash or even Javed ! (Interestingly, milliblog posted similar status, with names of Hans Raj Hans and Gurdaas Maan, if happened, this Patakha would have been more awesome) And did i forget to mention interesting use of harmoniums?

Implosive Silence : Silence can be musical. Who else but Sir can make you convinced on that? This one, hummed by Jonita, takes you to a different world. Close your eyes and you are there. Open your eyes and still you are there. Reaching there, while objects passing by (that sound, just like one by one pillars on side of the track, are passing).

Tu Kuja : Another one that did get least attention by me, initially. Thought its typical (even lyrics). But I was wrong. When heard in silent atmosphere, with headphones, the electronic arrangment is killer. Add to that Sunidhi's flawless rendition. Kashmiri folk gets Irshad's touch with some typical words, this takes time to grow. And when it does, it gets stuck in your head. And the humming of Rahman (right before second stanza) haunts you for long. This, is something Sunidhi deserves from ARR. Wish we can hear more from the duo.

Heera : Vintage Rahman. Yet again. This one, is goosebumps galore. Shweta Pandit sings Saint Kabir's verses in such a low key, almost whispering voice. Sounding extremely effective for the theme the song has. And the arrangements - sigh. This is Rahman, we have loved since years. Minimal, piercing, rich and gorgeous. A sound we heard in Zubeidaa (Door kahin..) and Lagaan (Spirit of Lagaan humming). That - divine touch.

Running out of words, but, yes, this is experimental Rahman. But still, he touches all the right chords. Touching corners of your heart.

My Picks : Patakha Guddi, Tu Kuja, Heera, Sooha Saaha, Mahi Ve.

Tags : A R Rahman, Music Reviews, Music review of Highway, Highway music review, Highway songs list, Highway songs, Alia Bhatt debut singer, Zeb Haniya, Tu Kuja meaning, Tu Kuja means, Kashmiri folk, Heera by Saint Kabir, Sant Kabir, Jonita Gandhi songs,


  1. exactly what i felt abt male version of patakha guddi....at first i found it very absurd but after listening to it properly,i find it as the best song of movie...legendary!!

  2. Rahman deals with two genius Punjabi male singers. Sukhwinder Singh. And Daler Mehndi. I still don't listen to it. My belief till now is that Rahman has, despite all good intentions, ruined it. He could have got someone who knew the language. God bless him for getting the Nooran sisters here.


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