Bose: the forgotten hero
Music: A.R. Rahman
Lyrics: Javed Akhtar
Times Music; Rs 55, CD Rs 150
Eureka! Netaji Bose has been found, by debatably India's best filmmaker Shyam Benegal. The hardly forgotten hero, Bose, will hopefully remain unforgettable after Benegal's unforgettable effort on celluloid. Meanwhile, here is the music track of the film, by A.R. Rahman and Javed Akhtar, arguably the best in their respective trades.
Rahman's work on a similar 'legendary' film, Shahid Bhagat Singh, naturally comes to mind, with Kadam kadam and Ekla chalo. The opening number, Azaadi, sung by Rahman himself, also effortlessly recalls his Vandemataram and Ma tujhe salaam ' patented higher octaves. The pick of the lot is Hum Dilli Dilli jaayenge by the Mumbai Film Choir. Side B is full of 12 theme tunes: very interesting track, this.
Prime Music; Rs 45
In Kalpamaya, Swagatalakshmi Dasgupta has taken up a challenge of sorts by singing some of Atulprasad's best and most popular numbers.
Pagla monta re, Ke abar bajay banshi and Eka mor ganer tori are songs that Bengalis have hummed for many decades now. It is not easy to capture effectively the melancholy refrain that runs through the music of Atulprasad but she has succeeded largely. She has done justice to these three songs and has also rendered well Tobo antare and Jhariche jhoro jhoro. More importantly, Swagatlakshmi has got her own unique style that has gone well with the songs.
Raga Music; Rs 40
Sushanto Mukhopadhyay has chosen eight fine Tagore songs for this album. Sada thako anande and Dirgha jibana pathe are not heard frequently. He must be complimented on his choice because too many singers tend to fall back on Tagore's surefire numbers and many moving songs are left to languish in neglect. Sushanto Mukhopadhyay has a serious, sombre approach which has its own appeal. One feels, however, that while giving voice to Prane khushir toofan he could let himself go a bit and could have breathed a little more life into Aji bijono ghare, for Tagore's sad songs are not necessarily lifeless. His style and diction are flawless which make listening a pleasant experience.
Rabindranather prem puja
Asha Audio; Rs 38
Panchali Dhar explores a melange of emotions in her Rabindranather Prem Puja, a collection of 12 well-chosen songs from Tagore's vast repertoire. Different facets of human and divine love find expression here and the singer's rendition, though strictly conventional, would leave even the most finicky of listeners satisfied. Her voice travels effortlessly, evoking the right mood in each and every song. Particularly soothing are Hridaynandana bone nibhrita and Amar hiyar majhe. Definitely worth listening to more than just once.
Stotra puratoni bangla gaan
Asha Audio; Rs 38
Panchali Dhar comes with a fair mix of the devotional and the religious in Stotra Puratoni Bangla Gaan, with music by Suprakash Chaki. Her rendition of the stotras, or devotional texts are especially remarkable, with a combination of quiet music, enhanced by the use of the flute, her mellifluous voice and the words of the incantation creating an atmosphere of peace for the listener. The old Bengali songs, by Kamalakanta and Ramprasad for example, are always a pleasure to hear that one more time.