Are you tired of hearing the same kind of music, with the same kind of singers belting out the same vapid tunes? Are you thirsting for a change? If you don't mind your songs to be of one specific genre and in fact want it to be quirky with a touch of outer? Then head for the shops and get yourself a copy Mumbai Xpress CD or cassette.
You'll not be disappointed. Kamal and Ilayaraja have ensured that with the highly jazz-filled songs. In fact, the jazz trip is the underlying thread of the tunes ----perhaps stringing the film together itself.
Though not in typical format or structure, there are three real songs, another based on Vande Mataram and a symphony piece recorded live in Hungary. The songs may seem longish, but carry the unmistakable stamp of Ilayaraja.
1) Ila Re
This starts off with Hindustani style delineation and then sets into a comfortable Marathi rhythm (IlaRe) and then who caboodle of singers (beginning with Kamal himself, the song includes Sonu Nigam, Shaan, Sunidhi Chauhan and Shreya Ghosal). It is an interesting song as it does not have conventional pallavi,charanam stuff. The instrumentation, typically Ilayaraja, is splendid and the jazz effect almost gives you the feeling of being in new Or leans(the spiritual home town of jazz). The catchy rhythm stays with you right through.
2) Vande Mataram
This is apparently a fun bit with kids having a whale of time. Though some purists may smirk at having taking liberties with such a number, the song again showcases Ilayaraja's virtuosity with instruments.
3) Monkey Chatter
Don't worry this is not Discovery or National Geographic territory. It is just a live symphony (recorded in Hungary) with Ilayaraja showing us what we may have missed ---- in the unreleased symphony that he sofamously recorded in London several summers ago. It is not clear how such a long bit will play out in the film, but it sure makes for pleasant listening.
4) Poo Poothathu
Simply stunning. This is what melody is all about. Vintage Ilayaraja, actually. Sonu Nigam, Shan and Shreya Ghosal are in prime form and the song just bathes you in rose water as you are transported to a romantic Eden. It is revealing that jazz can accommodate so much Indian melody within its essential matrix.
5) Korangu Kaiyile
Kamal has talked so much about this song. You listen to it and realize that it is with reason. Kamal, Tippu, Sonu Nigam and Sundihi have a whale of time belting out this singer.This is again Miles Davis domain with wind instruments taking you on an evocative journey.
Kamal and Ilayaraja have shown their taste and sensibilities through this different effort.
What is the taste of the listeners? Is it different and tasteful? Or do they prefer hackneyed stuff?