Music Review:Banam(Mani Sharma)

by Srikanth Mantravadi

I usually reserve my verdicts for the last few lines of a review but listening to this OST, I’m so ecstatically gobsmacked that I have decided to lay it out at the very start .Have no doubts, Banam is the best telugu OST to have been released this year. It is the best Mani Sharma has conjured in a long long time. And it is the rarest of albums to have gotten consistently beautiful wordings(Kudos! Vanamali and Rama Jogaiah Sastry).

Like all good soundtracks this one too has minor hitches, namely the thematic tracks Padara Padara and Charithralo. Fact is they aren’t all that bad but would rather work well when accompanied with the visuals.

That leaves us with three stunning tracks to savour on. First is the very inspirational Kadhile Padham sung, oh so rousingly by Shankar Mahadevan. It is a perfect example of the music director thinking beyond the usual *situational song*(motivational songs,usually,are situational) that would do the trick and going the whole hog to come up with an appealing number.Can’t get enough of this; the simple strumming at the start, the trippy flute throwaways, Shankar’s soaring vocals that adroitly taper off after attaining a rapturous crescendo. Breathtaking stuff. And that is one word that would be apt for Nalo Nelena also, the other gorgeous number. Silken and pulchritudinous (sorry guys!), it is sung by a Hemachandra who is so assured and poised, while wading through the dense classical nuances, that one can only stand and marvel (The song is based on the Saranga raagam(?);Nuvvena(Anand) and Andamgalena(Godavari) are built on the same). Needless to say the arrangements by Mani are wondrous, especially at the start and from thereon. Saindhavi offers able support. With simple & innocent lyrics and a characteristically saccharine sweet Shreya who breezes through serenely, Mogindi Jeganta is the icing on the cake; a pleasant ditty to add to the already overflowing gush of goodness.

Mani Sarma’s return to form is classy and smashingly orchestrated.

My Picks-Kadhile Padham,Nalo Nelena

My Rating-Four Cheers!!!!

PS:The rating was tough to give actually,but I was really blown to bits by those two songs.And in a way Mani has done something totally unexpected just when we have come to expect the usual potboiler mix.(It’s a cop movie,I surmise)His last few releases have been the least inspiring with a spate od duds.Considering all this,a pleasant surprise indeed!