As I write two BIG names in the credits above, a heavenly feeling runs through. But another big name gets associated with this album and spoils it. Yes YRF, you!
1. Challa (05:21)
Singer: Rabbi Shergill
Now it's a well accepted fact that this is more a Rabbi track than Rahman's. Dominated with strings, this sounds like an Indie-Pop genre. Following stanza is very reminiscent of Jal-The Band music and the classical choir interludes reminds of Yuvvraaj. Very compelling and enjoyable.
2. Saans (05: 26)
Singer: Shreya Ghoshal, Mohit Chauhan
My first reaction as this song started: "Did A R Rahman really composed this one?" But stereotype Rahman (what I was looking for!) follows in the interludes with flute, piano and bagpiper, later. This track has Yash Chopra (read Veer Zara) written all over it. The heavy arrangements doesn't blend with the leisure vocals who lacks chemistry and sounds, most of the time, off-beat. Shreya's recitation of "saans" seems to be very forced. Rahman has his own perception of Indians in Europe, it seems, which explains why this track reminds you of Yuvvraaj again. I am reminded of Hawa Sun Sun from Ada, though. This should have been done with comparatively minimal arrangement but multiple listening could develop some liking.
3. Ishq Shava (04:30)
Singer: Raghav Mathur, Shilpa Rao
Mediocrity is at its peak when the song goes "laga laga laga laga aag laga" just after some heavy Urdu words are thrown in for this peppy dance number. Interrupting words like "hey, tara ra ram pa" doesn't gel up with the mood. Following paras with serene guitars uplifts the track but that's just not enough.
4. Heer (05:14)
Singer: Harshdeep Kaur
Starts immediately with the vocal and a guitar that is caught up by a dafli in loop and Saans tune in the interlude.There's a faint flute in the backdrop which I would have loved to listen in the lead for this breezy arrangement. Harshdeep's voice has enough soul to feel the burning passion behind the Punjabi lyrics which sounds sweet even if you don't understand it. At around 01:37, it reminds you of Kun Faya Kun's "sajra sawera" part. And that's enough to make it a very peaceful track.
5. Jiya Re (05:19)
Singer: Neeti Mohan, Safia Ashraf
This is Latoo (Ghajini) of this album. Very predictable music that lacks catchiness and has nothing special to talk about. It has too many "Jiya Re" and runs long for no reason. You'll be sighed as this ends.
6. Jab Tak Hai Jaan (03:52)
Singer: Javed Ali, Shaktisree Gopalan
The piano and the humming reminds me of Rahman's song for Toyota Etios commercial "Gun Gunayenge Rahein" and Abhi Mujh Mein Kahi from Agneepath. Javed Ali hits the right notes in this ambiance which shifts to sufi-ish mood. Grandiose feel follows to give you goosebumps and introduce a heavy female voice that changes drastically later. This is the song that should be played this Diwali all over.
7. Saans (Reprise) (02:05)
Singer: Shreya Ghoshal
This sounds like even more sad version of the original. And delivers nothing remarkably new.
8. Ishq Dance (03:29)
This is something like Dil Toh Pagal Hai. Dance and Ishq, you see. Complete percussion that fails to get hooked.
9. Jab Tak Hai Jaan - The Poem (02:15)
Recited by: Shahrukh Khan
This is exactly the same we heard in trailer and expected to listen a complete new song on this tune. But alas! Mellifluous arrangement with Shahrukh's voice in dominance (reciting an underwhelming poem) works brilliantly. Shall I hope a song on this tune in the voice of A R Rahman in the movie?
With some songs that really made me ask did Yash Raj really rope in A R Rahman or just hired his studio and sent in some duos there to work? Anyways, more or less, this album disappoints to some extent as this is more a YRF album than an ARR album. And I am sure A R Rahman himself wouldn't be happy with this soundtrack but Yash Chopra would be. Apart from some unexciting score, what disappoints more is that it has no heart-piercing words by Gulzar Saab. I'm waiting for someone to translate two Punjabi songs to find some contentment there. Jab Tak Hai Jaan seems to be an album composed in hurry.