At a time when Sajid-Wajid were thought to be Salman Khan’s in-house composers, Pritam made a splash into the superstar’s camp by signing three films (‘Ready’, ‘Bodyguard’ and ‘Ek Tha Tiger’) which featured Khan in the lead. While Pritam scored some chart topping numbers for ‘Ready’, he was unceremoniously dropped from Bodyguard (after recording the song “I Love You”) to accommodate Salman Khan’s old favourite Himesh Reshammiya. Then, Pritam had to opt out of ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ as he got busy with ‘Dhoom:3′, another Yash Raj Films’ production. Director Kabir Khan’s films always had decent music and his last film ‘Ek Tha Tiger’, which also featured Salman Khan, had some popular songs. While the music of ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ came across as a merger between the actor and the director’s sensibilities, Kabir seems to have taken a more mass-appealing route with ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’.
“Selfie Le Le Re” has Pritam’s stamp over it but at the same time the composer’s struggle to make a track which would cater to Salman Khan’s fans is more than apparent. As a result, the track seems overburdened with too many ideas and sounds that appeal only in parts. The tune that carries the hook line ‘Selfie Le Le Re’ lands up abruptly and seems forcefully inserted. Vishal Dadlani gives this half-baked song a lot of energy. Nakash Aziz sings a few lines. Badshah’s rap is alright.
Up next is “Tu Chahiye”, a love ballad with has a techno base, which you would expect to hear in an urban romantic comedy. It is a little difficult to imagine this track placed this film as it seems out of sync with the flavour of the film. Even the video does not fit in with the audio track. This Atif Aslam song takes some time to grow and though it does not turn out to be something that you will hum for a long time, it does not make for a bad listen.
Pritam ropes in Adnan Sami to sing his recreation of Sabri Brothers’ iconic qawalli “Bhar Do Jholi Meri”. More than a decade ago, Adnan had sung a qawalli called “Ruthe Yaar Nu Mana Le” for the film ‘Chori Chori’. Interestingly, his co-singers were Sabri Brothers. “Bhar Do Jholi” lasts for more than eight minutes and while one has expected a slightly filmy qawalli in a film like this, what one gets to hear a track that represents the qawalli genre in a very pure, unadulterated form. Adnan carries the track well and gets good support from the chorus singers. Pritam retains the original tune and arranges the track in a way that it reaches out to Hindi film music listeners.
“Aaj Ki Party”, the promotional track, reminds one of Pakistani singer Hasan Jahangir’s popular song “Hawa Hawa”. The song, which came out in the 80s, have been re-created and used in various films like ‘Billoo Baadshah’ and ‘Chaalis Chauraasi’. This Pritam number sounds like a cross between the Hasan Jehangir song and his own “Gandi Baat” (‘R…Rajkumar’) but is not half as catchy as either of the two tracks. At best, it is an average track that will rely heavily on the way it is picturised.
Pritam infuses a distinctive Goan flavour in “Chicken Kuk-Doo-Koo”, sung by Mohit Chauhan. The tune is pretty bland and whatever joy you derive out of listening to this song comes from the lyrics (Mayur Puri) and the vocals (Mohit Chauhan). This number is expected to arrive at a light moment in the film. One would have to wait for the visuals here as the audio track barely makes an impact.
Even though the tune does not hold that well, the interesting backgrounds and heart-warming lyrics make “Zindagi (Reprise)” a good hear. The track has a dreamy vibe to it which is accentuated by Jubin Nautiyal’s icy voice. Neelesh Misra’s lyrics are philosophical and convey a strong message. The song has a very smooth flow and a calming effect. The tune is far from being memorable but the track should make a good impact with visuals.
‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’ offers some variety with most of the tracks belonging to different genres. Pritam brings his own style while trying to make music which would cater to Salman Khan fans. Unfortunately, it does not quite turn out to be an album that is consistently enjoyable.