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TheNation

March 06, 2011

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music review

Jhoom: By Navirah Zafar

A New Look, A New Persona

After ‘Masty’ (2006), many people were sceptical on Ali Zafar’s music status as to, will he release a music album or not. With his debutant movie ‘Tere Bin Laden’ (2010) music buff let alone music biggies were certain that making an album would be his last priority. But an inquisitive personality like Ali Zafar can never be tamed, with his next big bollywood project ‘Mere Brother ki Dulhan’ in line, Jhoom (2011) has finally landed. Ali Zafar’s diverse persona has always captivated his ever increasing fan flowing. But a true star is only then acknowledged when he comes back with a big bang. Ali Zafar with his soulful voice and his music being mastered at the world famous Abbey Studio’s has again hit the jackpot. The album was launched under Ali Zafar’s own Alif Studios while the world wide release would be handled by the Yash Raj banner. The singer returns to ghazal mode with the fabulously packaged ‘Jee Dhoondta Hai’. Once again the vocals are left wanting in places – Zafar seems to flounder in the unenergetic portions every time. But despite that flaw the song is a beauty, incredibly comforting! The composer side of Ali Zafar continues his spectacular form into the next track as well, the melancholic and haunting ghazal ‘Koi Umeed’ that sees some excellent use of the sarangi. ‘Jaan-e-Mann’ is another highlight in which the piano phrases are exceptionally breath-taking. In spite of the slowness of the track Zafar carries out his part behind the mic quite well, literally pouring his heart out. From the last five tracks of the album, four of which have already made in Coke Studio Season 1. ‘Nahi Re Nahi’ is feel-good, its soft orchestration and Zafar’s soulful rendition forming a winning combo. Zafar’s smart rearrangement of Ustad Juman Khan’s

18 Sunday Plus March 06, 2011

classic ‘Yaar Dhadhi Ishq’ still works big time. The flute flourishes are just brilliant! ‘Allah Hu’ figures the only other vocalist of the album, Tufail Ahmed, Zafar’s compatriot in Coke Studio. The two singers complement each other very well in this sinister Sufi song, though Tufail’s superiority in this genre comes out clearly in many places. The final track is Dastane-Ishq, the lyrics are pretty touching, and the man has done justice to them with a beautiful arrangement and a fittingly stirring rendition. The ‘Dhol’ version is true to its name, just a dhol added over the original arrangement, and works quite like the original. The overall expectations from Ali Zafar’s album was quite high, but with his past top charting hits ‘haqa pani’, ‘masty’ and ‘rangeen’ (just to name a few), this album falls just short to the stature of his previous master pieces. Keeping with the tones and sounds of Coke Studio, ‘Jhoom’ resonates the impact left by the maestros of Coke Studio last year. ‘Jhoom’ the song is gradually but surely intoxicating people, as its re-runs on prominent radio stations is being appreciated and sang by avid music buffs. The true verdict on other songs from the album will only come about when they are played on the radio and how well they are perceived by the listeners.


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