So Nadeem-Shravan are attempting another comeback. Having faded to the background during the past year, in a similar situation when they composed for director Dharmesh Darshan in 2000, the duo return to the foray in the grandiose ´Bewafaa´, a film that cannot be termed as anything less. Were it not enough to have a magnanimous star cast comprising of Bollywood´s glitter full names like Akshay Kumar, Anil Kapoor, Manoj Bajpai, Kareena Kapoor and Sushmita Sen, they even have Lata Mangeshkar singing with them. Superlative? No. But the duo do come up with an ear friendly soundtrack which has potential, if not anything else.
Where Bewafaa excels is that it is a stray from the drastically redundant style that our once melody kings usually compose. They haven´t strayed too far, however, but the usual jhankaar is farther than usual this time around. Witness this in Lata Mangeshkar´s "Kaise Piya Se". This is obviously the best song of the soundtrack which is admirable considering the nightingale doesn´t sound like she once did, (which is understandable). Nevertheless, here a relatively soft and easy back drop is complimented wonderfully by her voice and a Yash-Raj like chorus, in fact the song seems like a throw back to the Yash Raj/Rajshri days of yore. No high notes, no stretches, no complications. And that´s why it works.
"Ishq Chupta Hai" is clearly a discernible rehash of the title track from 2002´s ´Dil Ka Rishta´. This time around, Nadeem-Shravan have played around a bit and have wisely chosen Abhijeet (who did not feature in Dil Ka Rishta) to sing the semi-ghazal. Not only does it stray from listeners detecting the similarities, but Abhijeet, as usual, takes the song and gives it life. The song is melodious, what Nadeem-Shravan do best and is a bit more on the creative side, for Nadeem-Shravan, of course. The song has a lot which gives it the thumbs up.
"Kehta Hai Kabutar" reminds listeners immediately of ´Judaai´, particularly the song "Mujhe Pyar Hua". Both songs are meant to be playful, hence why it is forgivable that Asha Bhonsle and Shaan croon to it. It may be silly, but the duo do make the song sound catchy, and entertaining. Asha has sung several songs like this and the beat may even get your fingers snapping (or hitting the fast forward button). The song is rumored to be pictured on Manoj Bajpai and Shamita Shetty, who is giving a guest appearance, and ends with a sultry whisper of "bewafaa".
Not unlike Nadeem-Shravan to repeat songs but in Bewafaa the theme and title track, "Ek Bewafaa Hai" (reworded in as many ways possible) is repeated three times. Distributing the wealth, three of the industry´s lead singers, Sonu Nigam ("Ek Bewafaa Hai"), Udit Narayan ("Ek Dilrubaa Hai") and Shaan ("Pyaar Ka Raahein") sing each version. Both Udit and Sonu are untouchable in their rendition of the whitty ditty which has a little bit of your typical Nadeem-Shravan (mixing in a bit of "Dil Ne Yeh Kaha Hai Dil Se") and a little bit of something extra. Udit´s version is good to open the soundtrack and ends with Udit whispering you are so beautiful jaanam. Sonu Nigam´s version is obviously meant to occur at a pivotal point in the film. The song opens and closes with a pop-styled English chorus questioning the listener what they would do if the one they love betrayed them. Shaan´s version is shorter leaving much less of an impact. Overall, the songs are playful and catchy and suitable for a theme.
The very much little heard of Kumar Sanu features in a trio ditty, "Pyaar Ka Anjaam", which also features Alka Yagnik and Sapna Mukherjee. The song has some of Anu Malik´s style to it but ironically sounds very fit for Kareena Kapoor to feature in. Alka is in fine form and is complimented very well by Sanu, who is featured less, but Alka´s singing really carries the melody here. Mukherjee, on the other hand, stands out on a sore note. For a romantic song it works but won´t be storming the chart.
Of course, with Nadeem-Shravan on, the qawaali or some form or the other of it, couldn´t be too far. Ghulam Ali sings "Teri Yaad... Yaad...Yaad...". The song is your typical sad number and though it is a pleasant listen, there is nothing particular about it.
An instrumental of "Kaise Piya Se" follows. It´s nice if you actually want to sing along to it. A drum beat, created for Akshay Kumar´s character, also follows.
Bewafaa does not offer anything novel from the N-S duo. But, given their reputation and their compositions for say the last four years or so, that is not surprising. Bewafaa is a mixture of what worked in Raaz, Judaai, Dhadkan with just a little bit of something extra to add some distinction, and of course Asha Bhonsle and Lata Mangeshkar. Most of the songs are catchy, workable and melodious which just might work for Dharmesh Darshan´s up and coming multi-starrer.