The soundtrack for Vijay’s next film, the fantasy-adventure Puli (Tiger), is what one would expect from a composer of Devi Sri Prasad’s (DSP) reputation; a blend of classical musical notes with a strong electronic twist. With all the lyrics penned by renowned Tamil poet Vairamuthu, Puli’s soundtrack boasts eloquent lyrics, perfectly complemented by a whole slew of singers, ranging from Shankar Mahadevan to Vijay himself and a special performance by the heroine of the film, Shruti Haasan. The result is a soundtrack that is good, great even in parts, but never excellent, and certainly not DSP’s finest work.
Puli’s soundtrack starts off with a hit; mellifulous Tamil lyrics brought to life by Vijay and Shruti Haasan. Vijay sings much like he has done in the past, so expect no surprises from him, but Shruti Haasan proves to be a pleasant surprise. This is a typical Devi Sri Prasad romantic number with a tempo that will make you tap your feet.
A typical Prasad masala piece, this peppy track starts with catchy guitar riffs complemented by nuanced electronic beats. Javed Ali’s baritone is perfectly complemented by Pooja’s singing.
The song in Puli which comes closest to being classical, Mahadevan’s voice coupled with the nadaswaram and thavil has brought Vairamuthu’s complex lyrics to life. With a catchy beat, and memorable lyrics, it is one of the better songs of the movie.
Arguably the best song from Puli, or at least the most audibly different, Mannavanae Mannavanae showcases the talents of an ensemble, with Anita , Chimayi, MLR Karthikeyan and Sooraj Santhosh’s voices meld together to create a fantastic track. With a formidable backing and easily the best example of Varaimuthu’s talent in this soundtrack, this song is a testament to DSP’s skill as a producer.
You can tell that the producer enjoyed composing the title track. With a fine performance by veteran playback singer Mano, DSP blends flute intervals and mild tabla beats along with his trademark orchestral backing to build a strong, albeit not particularly memorable, sound for listeners.
Tippu’s vocals shine through, perfectly complementing Vairamuthu’s lyrics, creating a melody that is memorable. A crowd-pleaser, to be sure.
All in all, Puli’s soundtrack showcases what we have come to expect from a producer of DSP’s calibre; big, entertaining numbers with a precise fusion of classical and electronic beats. The lyrics are also what one would expect from Vairamuthu; and perhaps this is where the album is a let-down. Much like Vijay’s movies, it’s loud, entertaining and catchy, but not distinct enough to warrant multiple plays, and certainly not memorable enough to avoid being generic. Shruti Haasan is, however, an unexpected treat.
Puli opens in cinemas on October 1.