Monday July 28, 2008

The Anu Malik Top 10!

Posted by Karthik

In one of his 90s interviews in India Today (if I remember right!), Anu Malik gloated that people will definitely love his music in Main khiladi tu anari. This was post his super successful Baazigar, who’s songs were playing almost everywhere those days. I did like the songs of Baazigar and was quite intrigued by this man’s confidence. So intrigued, that I bought the cassette of Main khiladi… on the first day of its release – a deed that I had restricted only to Rahman’s soundtracks, post the enthralling music of Roja, Pudhiya Mugam and Gentlemen! I was in a rather somber mood those days, tripping on ghazals from Pankaj Udhas (discovered his first album Aahat (1983) rather late, in early 90s, besides Hariharan’s divine voice in his ghazal collections). But, Anu was right about Main khiladi…! Churaake dil mera was stunning, despite the somewhat slower, disparate antara. I even loved the simple, catchy, Paas woh aane lage.

Though I had sporadically listened to Anu Malik’s music prior to Main khiladi, this soundtrack had me terribly interested in this man’s music. 90s was his kingdom in Hindi film music. Though he had to share the spoils with few other composers, he was still considered for many of the big budget films, besides being Vishesh Film’s in-house composer. Many of Mahesh Bhatt’s films those days had Anu Malik’s music, despite the mega success of Nadeem Shravan in Aashiqui. Even Bhatt’s masala flicks like Naraaz and Naajayaz had fantastic songs by Anu.

I’m of the opinion that Anu has never reached his 90s success post 2000 – barring very few specific songs. There was a particular Anu Malik style that ruled the roost back then – a mildly Latin/ Spanish tinge with a very noticeable tune shift – just the way Jatin Lalit had one – the very striking, Pancham’ish and almost off-key-till-it-registers twist. Strangely enough, my top 10 from Anu has mostly melodies, not the faster, catchier masala tracks he churned out. That says a lot about his ability to produce tuneful melody after melody in each film back then.

As always, this list is a personal opinion and is in no way influenced or induced by my recent anti-Anu Malik reviews of this new work or the criticism it has been garnering in Milliblog reviews’ comments. My last such list from Hindi was on Jatin Lalit and I had prepared this list almost simultaneously along with a list for my Top 10 Nadeem Shravan tracks. Just that this may be the apt time to publish such a list given the man is not in the best of his forms! I’m sure most of Milliblog’s readers would like to remind me of the films I have ignored in this list – Border, Ashoka, Aks and the likes – but when it comes to a matter of Top 10 + 5, you’d understand how tough it is to prioritize. There may be a strong personal story behind my selection and I guess you’d have too, when you list Aks or Border within the top 10!

My Anu Malik Top 10

01. Virasat – Taare hain baraati
02. Takkar – Aankhon mein base ho tum
03. Naaraaz – Sambhaala hai maine
04. Baadshah – Woh ladki jo
05. Refugee – Aisa lagta hai
06. Duplicate – Kathai aankhon waali ek ladki
07. Main khiladi tu anari – Churaake dil mera
08. Baazigar – Samajh kar chaand jisko
09. Chamatkar – Is pyaar se mere taraf na dekho
10. Imtihaan – Chaha to bahut

Honorary mentions!

01. Vijaypath – Raah mein unse
02. Naajayaz – Kya tum mujshe pyaar karte ho
03. Diljale – Ho nahi sakta
04. Fiza – Aaja mahiya
05. Phir teri kahani yaad aayee – Aaane waala kal

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