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Where’s the orchestra?

Luke Kenny ponders why we can’t get one of our multifaceted music directors to conduct a film orchestra.

music Updated: Nov 15, 2010 15:02 IST
Luke Kenny

What is it with Indian award shows and music by John Wlliams! For the past 10 years or more now, Indian award shows – be they film, music or even radio – somehow tend to use music composed by John Williams. Whenever an actor or a musician or technician gets an award, as he walks up to the podium to collect it, the speakers start blaring out the theme from Raiders Of The Lost Ark, or the closing credits of Star Wars. Then there’s the Darth Vader theme that also plays, much to my amusement. But I really control myself when they play the Superman theme.

Is it only me that has noticed this? Do you really mean to say that in such a talented industry, we can’t get some original music composed or even a live orchestra to play? So much for all the musicians we call on our brain dead reality shows! Can’t we get one of our multifaceted music directors to conduct a film orchestra? In the past, stalwarts like Tom Conti and Quincy Jones have directed the Oscars and the Grammy’s orchestras. I hope somebody from our great music ‘industry’ reads this…if I may say so.

Here’s what you want on your iPod, recommends Luke Kenny.

Commitment: Seal
Warner
Rating- **

Although Seal has had a twenty-year career, his output has been sporadic at best, racking up only six albums over time. This is his seventh and his most personal. Seal has always made music he has felt for and not pandered to the commercialism of the music industry. This is generally a double-edged sword, yet Seal treads the edge with much precision. This sumptuously-produced album by stalwart David Foster hits all the right chords and yet somewhere overdoes it and lets the songwriting fall through. I was unable to get through the first half, the ballads and the philosophising. But Seal fans will maybe give it a spin.
Bottomline
Listen without commitment

National Ransom: Elvis Costello
Universal
Rating- ***

Popularly known as the ‘other’ Elvis, Costello has been the undisputed king of post-punk, new wave sound. He is one of the few remaining innovative, ingenuous, mostly hilarious lyricists in songwriting. He’s got over 30 albums to his name, this being his 33rd, and he is strong as ever. Channeling the streets of New Orleans with as much ease as the back rooms of a New York bar, he sings about failed singers and vaudevillian actors. This is one for the fans as well as discoverers of musical curios.
Bottomline
Musical Treasure

Loud: Rihanna (Deluxe Edition)
Universal
Rating- ***

And just like that, the saucy, sultry singer plops her latest album on us unsuspecting mortals. One of the iconic popstars of the
new decade, Rihanna closes this one with a scorcher. From the opening ‘S&M’ (yes!) the slammers keep coming. The first single is ‘Only girl (in the world)’ and if that’s any indication, fans must prepare for the Rihanna who’s back to having fun. Special guests Drake and Nicki Minaj feature on a couple of tracks. Fresh, upbeat, sunny and synth-heavy, this is a great return to the pop sound that is so missing in music today.
Bottomline
LOUD!! Play it!

Jayce Lewis: Jayce Lewis
EMI
Rating- ** 1/2

What do you get when you take one tablespoon of Simon Le Bon (vocalist, Duran Duran), a half litre of Nine Inch Nails, add some finely chopped Sepultura and add Brian May (guitarist, Queen) to taste? You get the supposedly amazing sound and talent of Jayce Lewis. Because he has been positioned as the next biggest thing to music. Is he? Well, yes and no. He has got a good sound going, well arranged and processed, but alas, the songwriting leaves much to be desired. He’s a fine musician, playing drums, keyboards and guitars all by himself, but sometimes that gets in the way of songwriting. I still look forward to the second album though.
Bottomline
Give it a go