Posted On Thursday, June 21, 2012 at 08:59:01 AM
On the back of the dismal Agent Vinod, the decent Jannat 2 and the pleasant Ferrari Ki Sawaari, Pritam pumps up the pep and cranks up his creative gene to shake out a zingy Cocktail that’s worth a few rounds on repeat, even if the fun is not meant to last too long.
Choosing a lustrous, rich-toned Hindustani classical vocalist like Kavita Seth’s for the Gen-next house music-driven Tum Hi Ho Bandhu is quite the masterstroke. Neeraj Shridhar joins in with his regular robotic-sounding lines but what turns on the sunshine is the punchy jump-and-dance arrangement.
The semi-drunken Daaru Desi is a refreshing shot of stop-start acoustic guitars and somewhat intoxicated beats cruising against the happily hungover vocals of Benny Dayal and Main-Pareshaan-Pareshaan-girl Shalmali Kholgade. Irshad Kamil’s lyrics are fun; Chadhi mujhe yaari teri aisi, jaise daaru desi…khatti meethi baatein hain nashe si, jaise daaru desi.
Yaariyan starts off like Coldplay’s In My Place and ends somewhat like the band’s Yellow, but still manages to hold its own due to its laidback, alternative rock feel. Agnee’s K Mohan and Shilpa Rao do a fine job of elevating this average track but Sunidhi Chauhan and Arijit Singh’s reprise version, fired by grand pianos and an almost symphonic backdrop is more faithful at evoking this simple melody.
Mekaal Hasan Band’s Javed Bashir returns with his unmistakable timbre to spruce up the groovy Tera Naam Japdi Phiraan. The track’s remix packs in the pizzazz too.
The benign, sufi-esque Luttna explodes rambunctiously into a delicious electronica-meets-dubstep chorus and acquires a psychedelic kick thereafter, powering the song till the very end. Sample Irshad’s deft writing: Log charaag jalate ghee ke, main dil ka deep jalaaya...log hai khaate kasam wafaa ki, Main zehar hijr da khaaya.
Just for doing a sparkling job of retaining the spirit and zest of Jugni, Arif Lohar’s crackerjack of a track from Coke Studio Pakistan, the tracklist deserves half a star extra. Arif’s mesmerising vocals is accompanied by Harshdeep Kaur, standard distorted guitars and solid drumming. Perhaps the weakest of the lot is the humdrum Second Hand Jawaani, which repeats the formulaic, raunchy junk.
If the album lacks the spontaneity of Love Aaj Kal, it makes that up with its mirth and youthfulness. This Cocktail is well-brewed and heady, thanks to Pritam resorting to a few new mix and match tricks instead of passing off the old or borrowed ale in new bottles.