Road is no doubt one of 2002â€™s most anticipated movies. For starters, it is a Ramgopal Varma production, and that ensures a certain amount of originality. Director Rajat Mukherjee who made an impressive debut with â€śPyaar Tune Kya Kiyaâ€ť wields the megaphone. After terrific performances in â€śCompanyâ€ť,
Vivek Oberoi and Antra Mali are back together for the second time. And, Manoj Bajpai plays a psycho yet again (can anyone do it better than this guy?). The only name missing from the regular RGV team is Sandeep Chowta, who this time around is replaced by Sandesh Shandilya. Shandilya rose to fame with his composition â€śSuraj Hua Maddhamâ€ť from â€śK3Gâ€ť - arguably the best song of that album. If â€śSuraj Hua Maddhamâ€ť and the beautiful tunes of â€śAgnivarshaâ€ť are anything to go by, one would expect volumes from the music of â€śRoad.â€ť Unfortunately, the album is a major disappointment.
The album opener â€śMakhmali Ye Badanâ€ť is one of the few decent tracks in this bag. Featured twice on the CD, a soft hummable tune and moderate tempo work in its favor. Sonu Nigam breezes through this song with ease. The female vocals are by Sanjivani who compliments Nigam wonderfully. This is the first time that a tone like that of Sanjivaniâ€™s voice has been put together with Nigamâ€™s. For those who may not remember, Sanjivani made her debut with songs like â€śChurao Na Dil Mera Sanamâ€ť from Vinod Chopraâ€™s â€śKareebâ€ť.
The next track â€śRaste Rasteâ€ť has been used in many of Roadâ€™s trailers. On screen, the song seems and sounds quite strange. It isnâ€™t much better on CD either. The first minute of the track grips you with stunning arrangements. As the song progresses, the tune simply turns stale. Vinod Rathod and Sunidhi Chauhanâ€™s singing becomes repulsive. Jaideep Sahni, who had written the script for Varmaâ€™s â€śCompanyâ€ť is absolutely clueless as far as song writing is concerned. Each line seems to have no connection with the next - â€śSab bakwaas haiâ€¦Kya ye pyaar haiâ€ť. Whatâ€™s that about??
Shandilya is given a break as Nitin Raikwar takes hold of the baton for the next track â€śToofan Saâ€ť. The tempo and arrangements of the song bear a bit of similarity with â€śRuki Ruki Thi Zindagiâ€ť from â€śMastâ€ť.
K.Kâ€™s voice is a welcome break. Hereâ€™s a guy who doesnâ€™t need to strain his voice to hit high notes. And before you can heave a sigh of relief, Sunidhi Chauhan is back screaming over the top of her voice again. This is a song that could have worked. Nitin Raikwar impresses with his musical skills. His lyrics too are fairly decent. If only he had put a little more thought into keeping Sunidhi Chauhan in check.
Actor Makrand Deshpande tries his hand at lyric writing with â€śPehli Nazar Meinâ€ť. Yes, Sunidhi Chauhan is here again and more annoying than ever. Singing with her is Mohit Chauhan. The less said about this track the better. You feel like skipping it within the first 30 seconds. SKIP!
Phew. This is really cumbersome. But wait! Just when you begin to lose hope, Amar Mohile saves the day with the BEST track of the album - â€śRoad Rageâ€ť. WOW! What a track. Like all RGV productions, here is yet another theme track that will make waves. Mohile fuses synthesized ostinatos, chants and orchestral arrangements with Doppler effect samples of cars on a road. Why is the best track on the CD only 3 minutes long? Repeat! Repeat! Repeat!
The final track is â€śRoad Ke Har Mod Peâ€ť sung by Gary Lawyer and
Tannishta, with lyrics by Taabish Romani. The song is very unconventional and experimental. This is one of those songs that will work fairly well if placed in the background of the film. As a track on its own without any images to compliment it, the song fails. I donâ€™t know if I really want to listen to a song about the dangers of the road while driving in my car. Gary Lawyer sounds drunk, but lyricist Romani succeeds in writing an intentionally disturbing song.
The music of â€śRoadâ€ť is very different. But different does not always mean good. Shandilya has shown some guts here trying new sounds and trying to get his singers to play around with their voices. However, he seems to let them too loose and really should have kept them in check. Road misses Sandeep Chowta desperately.