varnachitram

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Music Review: Urumi

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When it comes to period films, you have to be careful about the music. You cannot transport heavily orchestrated music from the 21st century into the 15th. It is anachronistic. When you look at Santosh Sivan’s Asoka, it had absoutely terrible music from this point of view. It also had the usual Mahive-Soniye dance steps by SRK making you wonder if people from Asoka’s period had actually time traveled to present day.

So what about the music of Urumi? Deepak Dev is a guy who loves electronic music. In between he had deviated far from the magic he created via music of Symphony.

In fact Deepak Dev has done a great job with this album. The first song Aarane Aranne is a perfect Prabhu Deva song. Job Kurian’s  folklorish voice is perfect for Prabhu Deva while Reeta’s voice does not match Tabu in any sort of way. The percussion beats form the backdrop and Deepak Dev does not use any modern instruments in an overpowering way. Instead he uses the chorus for great sound effects.

It is those percussions which lead us into the next song Alakadal sung by Yesudas and Swetha. You have to pay close attention to the rendering to appreciate the manodharmam used by both singers. Each line is carefully sung with feeling and the percussion moves to the background for effect. But the BGM of this song leaves the 15th century and moves into modern territory giving an anachronistic feeling, but still the music, especially the humming is haunting.

Another haunting song is Appa sung by Reshmi Satish. The new voice had a raw earthly feel to it. For this, Deepak Dev stays in the background and it reminds us of his songs in Symphony. The same can be said of Thelu Thele sung by KR Renji. Renji’s voice has so much pathos in it, something we have not heard in a long time.

Chimmi Chimmi song is not really extraoridinary for someone of Manjari’s talent. It is a straight forward singing. But if you see the visuals, you would see that it suits Nithya Menon’s presence. What is interesting are the lyrics and the Malayalam words of a bygone era. You see this style of Malayalam in the next song Vadakku Vadakku sung by Guru Kiran and Shaan Rahman in a casual way. Once again Deepak brings the percussion back as a dominant part of the BGM.

Chalanam Chalanam
again uses heavy percussions and a kind of husky chorus to create an amazing feeling. But this is not our favorite for listening. Maybe it makes sense in the movie.

The surprise of the album is the Vadakku Vadakku remix sung by Prithviraj. We don’t know how many takes it took, but he sings well. In fact he sings much better than the superstars and the mimicry stars. The orchestration for this song is pure Deepak Dev. The rap, the guitar, the drums and rock music style remix – we really dig it.

The highlights of the album are the new voices which are quite nice. They give the album a freshness which is required for a period album. Kudos to Deepak Dev for breaking out the heavy orchestration and experimenting in a new style. After listening to his recent albums like Puthiyamukham and Tournament, we were thinking that he was stuck to one groove, but he surprises us once again.

3 Comments

  1. Agree that the songs make an impact but in the context of the movie, they seem quite out of place. Hardly any song in the movie goes along with the flow of the movie though they stand out if you listen to only the soundtrack.

    An observation on the songs – Appa and Chalanam Chalanam – one is almost a Pulavan pattu and the other a Bhagavati pattu but the same sound for both the songs makes it a bit odd.

  2. Dear varnachitram,
    before going gaga over the freshness and “deepak dev touch” and what not,
    please do a bit research if the music is original or not.
    As the whole kerala knows,this music is totally ripped off.
    urumi ALAKADAL copied from LOREENA’s CARAVANSERAI
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=36HZkibNM_Q

    urumi theme copied from gladiator theme
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DRZXwirKyo4&feature=related

    And from reliable insider sources,
    APPA and Thelu Thelu are not composed by Mr Deepak dev.
    If there is any doubt,santosh sivan himself could reveal who composed it.
    So before jumping about at the surprises the young composer offers,we must also look into the fact that how original thsi composer actually is.
    Almost all his tracks are inspired and quite manyof them are direct rip offs from various world music songs.
    SO URUMI MUSIC DISSAPPOINTS….
    Not coz of the unoriginality of 15th century music which the saga demands,
    but also because how casually the composer dealt with the music department.An original score could have really taken him places.Deepakdev is best suitable for commercial crass masala entertainers like christian brothers.
    Such a SHAME

  3. Rahman Shaan,

    Are you the person who composed music for Pattanathil Bhootam? Did you also sing in Urumi?

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