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Review: Always Kabhi Kabhi

It appears that there’s no dearth of school comedies and Always Kabhi Kabhi, produced by Shah Rukh Khan, is another one to join the fore. This time, it’s Pritam at the reins with Amitabh Bhattacharya doing the lyrics.

music Updated: Jun 06, 2011 14:01 IST
Nikhil Hemrajani

Film: Always Kabhi Kabhi
Music: Pritam
Lyrics: Amitabh Bhattacharya

It appears that there’s no dearth of school comedies and Always Kabhi Kabhi, produced by Shah Rukh Khan, is another one to join the fore. This time, it’s Pritam at the reins with Amitabh Bhattacharya doing the lyrics. Bhattacharya is becoming one of Pritam’s consistent collaborators, but not much of his work has really stood out since Dev.D with Amit Trivedi.

The first thing that stands out in this album is the prominent use of Hinglish in all six of the album’s original tracks. Given the movie’s name, it’s hardly surprising but its usage is overdone. Lines like "Antenna… nahin karta match antenna" http://www.hindustantimes.com/Images/HTEditImages/Images/Pritam.jpgfrom the song ‘Antenna…’ or "I’m a spread ishq and make you sing" from ‘School ke din…’ prove that Bhattacharya is trying too hard to be ‘cool’. There are also four additional remixes to be heard if none of the other songs can get you to shake a leg.

The tunes are rather formulaic because you know what to expect of the record before you start playing it. There are a couple of fast numbers, a couple of melancholic and introspective pieces, and some that overdose on fun and frolic. The mood might be right given the younger target audience, but the execution is poor.

Take the title track ‘Always kabhi kabhi…’ for instance. It’s a peppy and uplifting number but it seems to be stuck in a ’90s hangover with amateur singing. ‘Better not mess with me…’ sung by Sunidhi Chauhan is a typical sophomoric rock song with guitar riffs that sound like 1980s’ band, Van Halen.

The album’s standout track ‘Antenna’, which mixes Punjabi pop with electronic grooves doesn’t impress either. Heavy auto-tuning on the vocals make them sound synthesised and take the fun out of the number. The final track, an unplugged version of ‘Always kabhi kabhi’ ends the album on a pleasant note though.

Style precedes substance in Pritam’s latest work. Too much Hinglish and an overjoyed tone in most tracks will deter most listeners who are no longer in school or college. And while we’re at it, we don’t think college kids dig this kind of music either.

What we like:
Good music production

What we don’t like:
Too much auto-tune, music is too predictable