Composers Sajid-Wajid have been around for almost two decades in Hindi cinema. However, big-time success eluded them despite a handful of blockbusters. Inconsistent is the word if we evaluate them basis the quality of their soundtracks but the composers, somehow, made a point to have (at least) one notable number in every album of theirs. Well-versed in Hindustani classical music, melody has always been a forte with the composer brothers and their rooted compositions find fewer takers in this era of bland remixes and customary cacophony.
Talking about Sajid-Wajid, I must state how much I love the soundtrack they composed for Habib Faisal’s Daawat-e-Ishq. Atmospheric and high on melody, the album impressed me all the more after watching the film (which was mediocre at best). Set in Hyderabad and Lucknow, the songs are flavourful and rooted in a beautiful Nawabi essence. Over to the songs…
As the film proceeds, the first song “Shayrana” comes up. Rendered with absolute panache by Shalmali Kholgade, the song is everything that describes the flush of first love. Sounding a bit like Anuradha Sriram in parts, Kholgade’s voice texture is uniquely robust while being immensely feminine. Not to mention Sajid-Wajid’s addictive instrumentation that upbeat and young-bearing a different sound from the rest of the album. Years down the line, I still play this number once in a while and it, easily, is one of this decade’s finest romantic melodies.
Amidst the appetizing background score that runs throughout, the next song to come up is the title track by Javed Ali and Sunidhi Chauhan. Javed’s voice and his rendition define everything that the hero’s character is all about: honest, sincere and heartfelt. His vocals radiate sheer beauty as he goes, “Tu aaye to meri pheeki se mehfil mein lazzate laut aaye…“. Sunidhi Chauhan supports him ably.
Next up is Sonu Nigam–Shreya Ghoshal‘s ” Mannat”, a complex, operatic romantic song that is definitely not the most hummable of all songs but highly impactful in the film’s narrative. Interspersed with dialogues, the song sets tune to the budding romance between the leads. Brownie points for consistently excellent rendition in a clearly difficult composition. Equally commendable is Kausar Munir’s attempt to lace romance in a song high on busy orchestration. The soundtrack also comes with a reprise version in which Ghoshal takes the centrestage and the song makes for an equally engaging listen.
The situational number “Jaadu Tonewaaliyan” by Sabri Bros is highly functional and is timed perfectly in the film.
Wajid-Shreya Ghoshal number, “Rangreli” comes as the end credits roll. Laced with interesting wedding music, the song makes for a pleasant hear though not as beautiful as other tracks in the soundtrack.
Eventually, the music of Daawat-e-Ishq faced a typical fate of being overlooked due to the film not finding much patronage despite its merits. As a result, the soundtrack remains largely unheard of to date. Plus, the kind of music that the film serves is not what the audience of today takes to easily. Alas…