|This year Pankaj Udhas completes his 26 years in the world of music and on this silver jubilee event comes up with a brand new album 'Hasrat' [meaning desire]. Composers for this album that comprise of 'ghazals' and some love songs are Nikhil Vinay who have been regularly churning out melodious tunes, most recently for the non-film album 'Bewafai'. Cutting an album after a gap of one and a half year, Pankaj Udhas is proud of his 'Hasrat' which in his own words would "cut across all ages and is for everyone between 16 and 60 years of age".
With great hopes from the album, one plays it on to see if this statement by the ghazal maestro is indeed true.
1) Peene Waalo Suno [Lyrics: Praveen Bhardwaj]
What better way to start his silver jubilee year album than to shower praises on his favorite topic - 'ishq' and 'sharaab'. With glimpses of the opening 'alaap' of Nikhil Vinay's own hit 'Koi Fariyad' from Tum Bin [that was ironically sung by Jagjit Singh], 'Peene Waalo Suno' has everything that his fans with broken hearts have been cherishing for all these years. A well written track by Praveen Bhardwaj, it has Pankaj Udhas in his elements and eventually turns out to be immediately catchy. The track is a winner and soon should be an equally hot favorite in the upmarket dining halls and a bar on the street.
There is a [rather unnecessary] remix of the this track as well by Akbar Sami which hardly makes any contribution to this album since what one is interested in is just hearing Pankaj Udhas and nothing else. One can conveniently ignore this track that appears to be nothing more than a prop.
2) Rang Salona [Jyoti Nayar]
After an intoxicating 'Peene Waalo', Pankaj Udhas gets all lovey-dovey with appreciation for the lady love in 'Rang Salona'. A soft'n'silky track with easy to come lyrics by Jyoti Nayar,the track doesn't attempt to break any new grounds but turns out to be extremely likeable due to some melodious music by Nikhi Vinay. The tune does have shades of 'Chaand Sitaare' from 'Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai' and the end result is so simple that if not for the mushy lyrics, it would have easily passed on as lullaby. A second good track in succession.
3) Main Peeta Nahi Hoon [Lyrics: Sunil Jogi]
Pankaj Udhas gets back to his first love - sharaab - with well orchestrated 'Main Peeta Nahi Hoon'. Yet again revolving around heartbreak, the ghazal turns out to be quite entertaining due to all the three factors - music, lyrics and singing - working in favor of each other. One is amazed to observe here that the singer still possesses the same soft touch in his vocals that has made him a house hold name for more than two decades. Nothing seems to have changed at all in his rendition that touches your heart every time you play a Pankaj Udhas track.
4) Roz Mulaqatein Hoti Hain [Lyrics: Sunil Jogi]
In Roz Mulaqatein Hoti Hain, lyricist Sunil Jogi writes for second of his in-total 4 tracks in the album. A sweet song about a lover longing for his sweetheart to spend more time talking to him, it is as pure as love can get. This well written track by Jogi takes you to a dream world where what all that matters is just love and the feeling of togetherness and nothing else. On hearing the song one wonders where has all the innocence gone from mainstream Hindi movie tracks. Nikhil Vinay come up with yet another lovable song that takes the graph of the album to an all-time high with the listener keenly looking forward to the second half of the album.
5) Chanchal Chanchal Aankhein [Lyrics: Sunil Jogi]
Just like Rang Saloni, in Chanchal Chanchal Aankhein too the crux of the song revolves around appreciating both the physical and inner beauty of the lady love. The love song is given a melodious tune by the composer duo and though the track undoubtedly sounds pleasing on ears, what one starts longing from hereon is some bona fide ghazals from Pankaj Udhas.
6) Us Phool Se [Lyrics: Nusrat Badr]
The wait for a ghazal is over with Nusrat Badr written Us Phool Se coming up next. A track that goes to the extent of saying that the fragrance of a flower hardly matters if it doesn't bear the name of one's sweetheart, it has very good lyrics boosted by Pankaj Udhas' reliable rendition that makes you ask for more. One of the best tracks of the album, it can be heard repeatedly over a session of drinks with your near and ear ones for the sheer beauty of words.
7) Kabhi Dar Se [Lyrics: Nusrat Badr]
Lyricist Nusrat Badr dominates the second half of the album with three of his tracks coming up one after another. After 'Us Phool Se', 'Kabhi Dar Se' follows next that begins quite nicely with a different style of music. Lyrics are different from the ordinary once again and speak of high quality. A painful song about everything in the house reminding of someone close to the heart, it is amazing to see a new facet of Nikhil Vinay's composition style, something that has not been witnessed before.
8) Yaad Mujhko Kaun Aaya [Lyrics: Nusrat Badr]
Surprise surprise, because there is a dash of oriental music too thrown in the track Yaad Mujhko Kaun Aaya. As the title of the song suggests, it is yet another track about remembering the one you have loved most. Though the track is a fine hearing, it is relatively less impressive when compared to the others in the album. The song is just about passable with not much in it to remain in your heart for long.
9) Rishtey Toote Bandhan Toote [Lyrics: Sunil Jogi]
Sunil Jogi comes back to the scheme of things with a great last track of the album - Rishtey Toote Bandhan Toote. A soft number to mark the end of the album, it again boasts of good lyrics set to good tune. The theme of the track revolves around breaking of a relationship and subsequently the remembrance of the golden moments spent together. Overall the track is quite impressive and gives a feeling of contentment to the listener.
Hasrat is for sure a worthy album to mark the silver jubilee year for Pankaj Udhas. A MUST BUY for his fans worldwide, Hasrat is a worthy gift for them who had been long waiting for a Pankaj Udhas album to hit the stands.