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By Satyajit


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Taj Mahal talks about of the everlasting love that was transformed into beautiful monument. Akbar Khan has glorified this timeless saga of love on the silver screen. The surprise success of 'Mughal-e-Azam' has sparked many hopes for this historical love story as this can be termed as a well-crafted costume drama. Zulfikar Syed plays prince Shah Jehan and Sonya plays Mumtaz Mahal as the rest of the star cast includes Manisha Koirala, Pooja Batra, Arbaaz Ali, Kim Sharma, Milind Gunaji and Kabir Bedi. Naushad, the veteran and eminent music composer, has composed the music of 'Taj Mahal. Naushad has composed the music, as this is his last offering. He composed music for films like 'Shah Jahan', 'Mughal-e-Azam' and 'Baiju Bawra'. Uttam Singh and Gurmeet Singh have conducted the music. Naqsh Layallpuri and Syed Gulrez Rashid have composed poetic lyrics. Syed Gulrez Rashid penned lyrics for musical maestros like Ustad Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. The album has eight original soundtracks that have poetic lyrics and classical Indian music. Original soundtracks are on Times Music.

Side A has four soundtracks encapsulating the Mughal era with its classy musical compositions. Naushad's classical musical rendition sets the mood for soulful melodious track "Apni Zulfein Mere". Hariharan essays this track, as the lyrics are sugar coated with romantic bliss. The singer shows his vocal exuberance as he renders poetic lyrics with delight.

The sentimental tragic love soundtrack "Ajnabi Thehro Zara" is the quest of a lover with pain and melody. Preeti Uttam sings melodiously as Hariharan accompanies her with his impressive voice. Lyrics are painfully romantic.

Indian classical music sounds bright in melodious duet "Mumtaz Tujhe Dekha Jab Taj Mahal Dekha". Naushad's priceless talent of materializing poetic lyrics into traditional classical soundtrack has been highlighted with delight and panache. The song epitomizes the beauty of Mumtaz Mahal with Taj Mahal as they both exemplify timeless beauty. Hariharan has created pure magic with his voice as Preeti Uttam has done wonders once again. The song will be a treat for listeners who look for quality classical Indian music.

"Tareef e Meena (Couplet) Theme" narrates the importance and beauty of Meena Bazaar as the track is fed on Urdu couplets. The track is brief, narrative and instrumental.

Side B highlights the traditional rendition of classical Indian music with qawwali number. Qawwali number "Ishq Ki Daastaan" starts off impressively in the voice of contemporary singer Kavita Krishnamurthy and Preeti Uttam. Naushad's classy music makes it more colorful as the romantic couplets are well conceived through qawwali. The traditional impact of the track makes it even more penetrative and effective. Cinematography and costumes play very important role in making this track a hit.

The nostalgic tale of love soars high with promising notes in "Dilruba Dilruba". Preeti Uttam sings this emotional song, which epitomizes the never-ending love. The track sounds average and routine as compared to other tracks.

If one craves for heavy doses of classical Indian music then "Yeh Kaun Mujhe Yaad Aaya" (classical) is the right answer. Ajay Chakraborty renders finest pieces of ragas with optimum arrangements of instruments like sitar and sarangi in the background. The emotional and soulful has mesmerizing lyrics with an ambience of romanticism in air.

The album concludes with Taj Mahal (Crescendo), a theme track that symbolizes the eternal love story. The track has words like Taj Mahal and Dilruba echoed in the background. Hariharan along with Preeti Utttam sing this soundtrack that leaves an impact on listeners.

Naushad has tried to recreate the legendary Mughal era by rearranging tunes of tracks like "Mumtaz Tujhe Dekha" and "Ajnabi Thehro Zara". Naushad has certainly lived to the expectations of being one of the finest musical prodigies of all times. Uttam Singh along with Gurmeet has conducted music well as one wonders why singing talent of Preeti Uttam has been neglected so far. The album will find place in the collection of classical Indian music lovers.


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