Planet Bollywood
Producer: Firoz A. Nadiadwala
Director: Anees Bazmee
Starring: Akshay Kumar, Paresh Rawal, Nana Patekar, Anil Kapoor, Katrina Kaif, Mallika Sherawat, Feroz Khan
Music: Sajid Wajid, Anand Raj Anand, Himesh Reshammiya
Lyrics: Shabbir Ahmed, Ibrahim Ashq, Sameer, Anand Raj Anand, Anjaan Sagari
Singers: Shaan,Sowmya Raoh, Wajid, Shankar Mahadevan, Anand Raj Anand, Shreya Ghoshal, Shweta Pandit, Krishna, Akruti Kakkar, Himesh Reshammiya and Kalpana
Audio On: Junglee Music    Number of Songs: 6
Album Released on: 25 November 2007
Reviewed by: Gianysh Toolsee  - Rating: 6.0 / 10
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Everyone was expecting the soundtrack of 'Welcome' to have some chartbusting scores – considering big names like Firoz Nadiadwala, Anees Bazmee and Akshay Kumar. Anees Bazmee (the writer-cum-director) has a few good soundtracks to his credit as a director. ‘Hulchul’ had a few catchy and friendly tunes by Anu Malik, ‘Pyar To Hona Hi Tha’ had a romantic sound by Jatin-Lalit and ‘No Entry’ by Anu Malik again had the ‘masti’ music which was much need for the screenplay. Anees Bazmi is continuously at par with the musical trends at the time the movie is launched but unfortunately, a lot of his movies are delayed for various reasons.

Trust Firoz Nadiadwala for his lavish choreography and exotic sets! Nadiadwala is one of these producers with whom music directors want to associate with; in the sense that there is a full budget allocated for an extraordinary choreography and every portion of the song will be rightly shot to ensure full justice to the composed track.

The soundtrack, released under Junglee Music (owned by the Times Group which is making its entry in the music arena of Bollywood movies as well as regional) has three composers namely Himesh Reshammiya (two songs), Anand Raj Anand (three songs) and Sajid-Wajid (one song). Surprisingly, there are no remixes!

Anand Raj Anand steals the show in the soundtrack of 'Welcome'! ‘Kiya Kiya’ is a chartbuster material and has potential to grow bigger due to its right placement in the movie and the picturization on Akshay Kumar, Nana Patekar, Katrina Kaif and Mallika Sherawat. Loaded with 90’s sounds and a rough voice, the track has a very captivating tune and is rigidly infectious. ‘Oh Kiya Kiya Kiya’ rendered by composer-singer Anand Raj Anand has the right amount of energy to entertain for five minutes. As the singer, his voice does suit the tempo of the track and he does full justice to the lyrics of Anjaan Sagari. Being a 100% masala movie, the music is equally masala in its texture. Loud background scores are heard with frequent twists in the instruments used. More time could have been given for a neater score, especially when Shweta Pandit is sharing the credits. She is mainly heard in the ‘antaras’ and sounds quite raunchy! ‘Kiya Kiya’ has done the trick for 'Welcome'!

Anand Raj Anand is back in business once again! ‘Uncha Lamba' is one of the composer’s forte: a nice blend of Punjabi music with light techno sounds. Accompanied by Kalpana, the track once again relies heavily on the ‘Punjabi’ voice of Anand Raj Anand – which has been purposely differentiated from ‘Kiya Kiya’. Wait there is more! He has also penned the lyrics!

Sample this: ‘Main Avi Teri Ute Marda Ni’! There is one more: ‘Hoga Tera Good Luck, Dil Mere Liye Rakh’!

All these words are alright as they are part of a funky and easy-going number and also in a movie titled ‘Welcome’ and not ‘Yatra’! Anand Raj Anand impresses with his singing in both the ‘antaras’ where he renders ‘Jaane Jaana Karde Hum Pe, Apni Chaahat Ki Barsaatein’ with passion in the first verse.

On the orchestration side, there is a great influence from Pritam’s music - who is hard to beat with such types of music, where English choruses and rap portions are included (Refer to ‘Pyar Ke Side Effects’ soundtrack’s sound arrangements and mix). Still Anand Raj Anand has managed to beef up the track with trendy rap parts, zingy choruses and apt techno single notes. Mix all that with that Punjabi accent and the loud instruments - ‘Uncha Lamba' will sail through easily. The number is also beautifully picturized on Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif.

Anand Raj Anand composes one more song in the soundtrack and this one is rendered by none other than Shankar Mahadevan! Anand Raj Anand accompanies Shreya Ghoshal in this fast-paced track titled ’Hoth Rasiley’ which has a first-class picturization. Overall, it’s a funky item number not to be taken too seriously and falls into the category of those songs which need to be enjoyed on screen mostly. The second interlude includes harmonium bits – which blend well with the mood and feel of the song. However, the minus point comes in the form of a loud background score. Shankar Mahadevan’s voice easily overshadows that of Anand Raj Anand in this number and full credit goes to him for elevating the number with his splendid rendition. Shreya Ghoshal also deserves some applaud here as she suits the voice of Mallika Arora Khan very well. Ibrahim Ashq‘s lyrics are overall good.

(Special mention to Ghoshal who has made a big shift from romantic songs to such high energy tracks in the recent past including ‘Dil Liya Dil Liya’ (Dhol) and ‘Yeh Ishq Hai’ (Jab We Met))

The original composer of the soundtrack – Himesh Reshammiya, arrives with his trademark sound in 'Kola Laka Vellari'. Sound arrangements are typically those of these 2006 popular numbers where he became immensely popular. The track fails to create the same desired impact and the singer also does not sound that interested in the rendition. Lyrics by Sameer are routine in nature. 'Kola Laka Vellari' would have been a hit if released earlier and is an average track by all standards.

‘Insha Allah' are those trademark numbers of Nadiadwala which should be present in all his movies. Understandable. The number is a potpourri of some popular songs and is quite harsh to the ears in general. Himesh Reshammiya is heard in the background crooning ‘Insha Allah' endlessly. Shaan, Akruti Kakkar and Krishna have not been given the right lines to sing and are lost amidst the quite poor orchestration and sound arrangements. A cacophony is created with all these instruments used. A complete no-no. However, the picturization saves the song on screen due to the funny performance of Anil Kapoor! Not to miss!

Sajid-Wajid composes the title track of 'Welcome' and this could have been a theme rather than a short song. Shabbir Ahmed has the easiest job to write a few light lines while Shaan, Sowmya Raoh, Wajid provide the vocals. A funky number once again with a good orchestration by the music directors of ‘Partner’. The ‘antaras’ which follow are quite funny and sometimes make no sense at all. Sowmya Raoh is efficient in her part while Shaan and Wajid seem lost in their singing.

Clearly, the soundtrack of 'Welcome' should have been composed by only music director. Nevertheless, it is Anand Raj Anand’s tracks which steal the spotlight! He has an ability to compose beautiful ‘antaras’ but should keep away from loud background scores. The soundtrack has variety although the sounds and singing are quite from the 90’s. It will be most enjoyed if one has watched the movie though.

The soundtrack is also one of these rare ones where three popular music directors namely Himesh Reshammiya, Shankar Mahadevan and Anand Raj Anand who has turned singers (or vice versa for Mahadevan) share the same space and above all; they all have started in film music about the same time. Let’s welcome this new change!

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