The highly anticipated Shaandaar starring Shahid Kapoor and Alia Bhatt is slated for an October 22 release. Directed by Vikas Bahl of Queen fame, and with both leads coming off major successes — Kapoor in Haider and Bhatt in 2 States and Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania — Shaandaar will be releasing with the burden of high expectations on its shoulders. The official trailer was released in August and garnered over five million views within two weeks of its release. Not much has been released about the plotline of the movie, but there are reports that it is about a destination wedding and a love story between two insomniacs.
The soundtrack released on September 16, 2015 and has been helmed by Amit Trivedi. Trivedi was responsible for the music for Lootera, Queen, and English-Vinglish among countless other hit albums, so I was a little disappointed that I did not love the Shaandaar soundtrack as much as I have loved the others. The first song that the world was introduced to was the peppy “Gulabo” featuring Vishal Dadlani and Anusha Mani’s vocals. This is one of my favorites on the album mainly because of the background score and the catchy lyrics.
The title track “Shaam Shaandaar” features Trivedi’s vocals, and to me sounds very similar to “Gulabo.” Arijit Singh, Neeti Mohan, Swanand Kirkire, and Trivedi team up for the unique “Senti Wali Mental,” and I really wanted to love it, but I just didn’t. The lyrics really were not up to par, and the musical accompaniment was just a bit boring. Thanks to “Senti Wali Mental,” I was able to hate on Bollywood’s use of “mental” for a full 9 minutes. Why…just why?
Shaandaar’s soundtrack would be incomplete without a love ballad, and “Nazdeekhiyan” with Neeti Mohan and Nikhil Paul George is just that. This is a sweet song with great orchestral musical accompaniment, but there was still something missing in it for me that kept it from being great in my book. The unusual “Raita Phail Gaya” rounded out the Shaandaar album. Divya Kumar belts out this song about wedding drama just fine, but there is really just nothing special about this number.
Ultimately, Shaandaar’s album is just okay. There are not any songs I really love, and there are not any that I really hate. Here’s hoping that the movie itself makes up for the lackluster soundtrack.
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Farah Naz Khan is an internal medicine resident at Emory University. After graduating from college in Boston, she returned to her Alabama hometown to attend medical school, and was reunited with the mix of Southern hospitality and South Asian culture that had shaped her childhood. Follow her on Twitter @farah287 or read some of her thoughts at farah287.blogspot.com.