04 April 2007

Sivaji The Boss - Detailed Music Review


Warning : This is a fairly long review, much like my review of anbae aaruyire.

So, without much ado let's start off. To begin with, this is a fairly interesting album. In as much as I can detect the freshness in some songs, I can also sense some overlapping rhythms here and there. There is no comparison to Rahman's earlier album for Rajini, "Padayappa". That was more like he was composing keeping in mind Rajini's image and stuff. In this album, he looks to have had a free hand in composing his music and hence, as they say in tamil "vlayadirukar".

Vaaji Vaaji: "God" Hariharan is back with a bang. In recent times, he has not been singing that many songs as he was during his peak. The song starts off with some nice rhythmic beats. However, the beats sound a tad similar to "Yegiri gudhithen" song from Boys. Hariharan, as usual, effortlessly wafts through the entire song. However, the sore point of this song is Madhushree. "Azhagai saani idu " ? What was she trying to sing ? Or is it that the words are definitely "saani " ?. Saani means cow-dung in tamil ! And sample this again before the end of the first charanam. "Vihigalukul siru thozil pozhiveera?" Lady, there is a word in Tamil called "zha". If you cannot pronounce it, please do not murder it. Either ways, she has butchered the song. The main drum loop looks pretty unimpressive. However, what is interesting is the little bit instruments, the dholaks, the electronic guitar bits that appear throughout the song. Sample: The electronic scratching music (Much like turntable scratching that appears only between the charanams and not again anywhere in the song). One can also detect a violin piece just before the end of the first charanam. There is also a short piano piece that seems to be following Hariharan's voice. Rahman, as always, is a master in fitting multiple layers of sounds into his music, that somehow appear to gel together. This song is no different. BTW, vairamuthu seems to be in his elements. The song opens with "Poombaavai aambal aambal". Aambal means a garland of Jasmine flowers. "Punnagayo movval movval". Movval means lotus flower. Luckily, Rahman did not make Madhushree sing the opening lines. That would have been horror personified. 8.5/10

Athiradee: Stunning use of guitars thought the entire song make it a very nicely composed piece. Rahman seems to be evolving very nicely as a singer. Note the way he sings "Billa Ranga Baasha" lines after the first charanam. He is definitely improving !! Vaali, as usual, has composed a Tanglish song. "Shock yerum padi shokeaa", Roger Moore, Castro and James Bond ? "MRI undha eye ?" Vaali, you seem to be getting younger with passing age. Note the club like techno music sounds after the first Pallavi. Once again, they do not appear anywhere else in this song. The lady singer gives able support. As I said earlier, I am pretty sure that this is going to be some kind of background song, or a song that is played whenever something important happens throughout the movie. 8/10

Balelakka: Can anyone come even remotely close to SPB ? At 60, his voice sounds stunningly fresh. Note the drum loop. I think that is thavil and dholak. "Kada kada vena kadakira kaveri". Do not even attempt to sing along those lines. This _has_ to be superstar's intro song. In fact, I think Rahman has probably composed the best intro song's for super star. Remember the opening for "Oruuvan Oruvan Mudhalali" from "Muthu"? Coming back, this is a definite monster hit song. Overall, this song seems to be extolling the virtues of living in a village. "Koovum cellphoneai marandhu" is a very interesting line. The background music seems to be having a cellphone ring-tone like sound at that time ! What was disappointing was the lines "Tamizhnaadum America". Why make such shitty comparisons ? Is this Na.Muthukumar who has written this song ? Also check out the shenai/nadaswaram piece before the second pallavi. The way SPB sings off the song with "Cool" is cool indeed ;-) Note the guitar pieces that accompany the chorus singers when they sing "Ballelakka". 9.5/10

Sahana Saaral: Udit Narayanan ? Why Rahman Why ? Note the tabla sounds that accompany the singers during the first few lines of the pallavi ? If you are careful enough, you can note a soft drum beat throughout the song in the background. It starts off just before the song starts and stays put all through. Udit Narayanan's voice just brays at high pitch ! I find it hard to classify this song as a melody song. Rahman comes in for a brief moment for the "Dheem thana" piece. And is this Chinmayi ? This lady has improved a lot ! For a moment, I thought that the singer was Mahalakshmi. She has done a good job at the husky/caressing portion of the song just before the end of the first pallavi. Check out the tabla portions that appear throughout the song too. Nice touch Rahman. Overall a very interesting song and a fairly layered song, except for the fact that Udit Narayanan ends up being a pain in the ear. 7.5/10.

Sahara Pookal: This is the sad version of the "Sahana Saara". Mr.Udit Narayanan, please see how Vijay Yesudas has sung this song. And who is this Gomathi ? She must be one of Rahman's new singers. She does manage to sing pretty well, but at high pitch, her voice begins to squeak a little. Much like what Rahman did to "Alaipayudhey" song by introducing a new rhythm for it, he has now introduced a new way of singing Thirupaavai. And yes, it does sound very nice. Most importantly, there is a soft Guitar strumming away in the background and a little "chak-chak" sound. That's all. Nothing else. Simply brilliant. 9/10

Ooru koodai sunlight: What can we say about this song ? Funk meets carnatic meets techno meets rap meets hip-hop ? A hard to classify but a stunning new sound. We have to hand it over to Rahman. This song is full of random sounds, no specific loop or whatsoever, and keeps shifting between various styles of music. And most importantly, I am unable to detect the usual pattern of charanam-pallavi approach. That has always been Rahman's style. There's lot of Spanish in between. I could detect the words "maestro fourturo delvidho thengo". Heh, even though I have been in Mexico for three months till now, I am unable to make out the meanings of those words. I guess I need to check with some people here. Note the way the female voice says "Staayleee" in the middle of the song. An outstanding song. IMHO, the highlight of the album. 10/10

The Boss: This looks to be some song that will be played when there is some stunt. Note the "siva" word that is made to sound like "sivaaaa". Interesting. The words suck. "vaila beeda pottukada" ? "Podava vaangi kattikada" ? Crap. Trash. However, once again, Rahman manages to layer up his sounds and instruments. I think I noticed the "yakkai-thiri" beat sequence in between this song. Power ranger and Jetix comparisons ? Come on. That _is_ so lame. In fact, this song seems to blend in well with the overall style of the album ! 8.5/10

Overall, this album is definitely worth a buy. As is with every Rahman song, you may not like it at the first hearing. However, do not let that put you off. Just listen to it patiently and be stunned. There is no way that this album can be compared to Harris Jeyraj's work for Shankar's previous movie Anniyan. Even though it has a few good songs ("Remo" and "Iyengaaru"), Rahman simply proves why he, and only he, can come even remotely close to Illayaraja.


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Posted by Shyam Krishnaswamy at 10:37 PM


  1. Blogger The Talkative Man posted at Saturday, April 7, 2007 at 9:57:00 PM GMT+5:30  
    Noticed this post(6/15/04), blogrolled :p
  2. Blogger partha posted at Monday, April 9, 2007 at 9:39:00 PM GMT+5:30  
    Good review, this album is better than the other ones arr did for Rajini - one of the sore points in the whole album is the choice of singers, he could have done a much better job in that part..completely agree with your comments about Udit.

    Regarding the lyrics in Vaji song, actually it is not sani - it is supposed to saNAi.
    "Anbai/Anbe Valai Edu - azhagai saNAi idu". Whoever did the translation to English messed it up for sure :-).

  3. Blogger K.Shyam posted at Monday, April 9, 2007 at 10:15:00 PM GMT+5:30  
    ttm: blogrolling was used to track whether the blog gets updated or not. I use google reader these days. And yes, your blog was there quite sometime ago !

    partha: thanks for the clarification.

  4. Blogger chidananda M R posted at Sunday, May 6, 2007 at 10:05:00 AM GMT+5:30  
    Hellow friends , you can see more about Sivaji the boss.

    Just click here


  5. Blogger Prams posted at Sunday, July 15, 2007 at 11:45:00 PM GMT+5:30  
    Sahana Saaral: its not tabla..it is Mridanagam. if you listen with your headphones on, you can make it out cleary.

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