By Abid, Bollywood Trade Editorial
SPECIAL 26 is indeed a special film! Not only is it the second directorial venture of ace director Neeraj Pandey, whose debut venture, A WEDNESDAY, went on to garner huge critical and some commercial success as well, but also because it stars one of the top most actors of Bollywood, Akshay Kumar, known more for his commercial action-comic fares, rather than serious cinema. It would indeed be a gratifying experience for all Akki fans to watch him in this con flick that has an undercurrent of humour in it as well.Music has been composed by veteran composer MM Kreem, who in the past has produced some memorable music for Bhatt films like CRIMINAL, ROG, JISM, and not to forget Shah Rukh Khan's fantasy fare, PAHELI. And lyrics are by the ever dependent Irshad Kamil! Guest composer Himesh Reshmmmiya is called in as well for just one composition. So let's check out the album and hear for ourselves if SPECAIL 26 has music that is as memorable as most of Kreem's previous works! An enthralling beginning in the form of K.K and MM Kreem excellently rendered 'sufi'-'qawwali' based composition, 'Tujh Sang Lagee', greets the listeners and sets up the mood through some absolutely divine Hindustani musical arrangements with harmonium, 'sitar' and 'tabla' thrown in. Irshad Kamil is at his poetic best. An excellent number first up!Guest composer, Himesh Reshmmiya, after delivering chartbusting numbers for Akshay Kumar's KHILADI 786 comes in again with good Punjabi folk based number, 'Gore Mukhde Pe Zulfa Di Chaava'. Aman Trikha, Shreya Ghoshal and Shabab Sabri render this fun filled banter number with ease. Lyrics by Shabbir Ahmed, though mostly hinging on Punjabi, are comprehensible and nice.Next up is once again a romantic raga based number, 'Kaun Mera', a very brief number which appears in three different versions. The Love Ballad version by Chaitra Ambadipudi has lovely orchestral arrangements, piano and flute. Soft Rock version by Angaraag Mahanta (Papon) is true to its title and is well sung. The third version by Sunidhi Chauhan is unplugged and her soft vocals reign supreme.MM Kreem is back to his melodic best with 'Mujh Mein Tu, a fantastic melodious, high pitched, haunting love ballad with minimal arrangements, embalmed with some excellent lyrics that tug at the heart and appears in two different versions in the album. Keerthi Sagathia renders the number and so does the composer himself and both are good. However, both falter at the same time with diction. A third version doing the rounds has been rendered by none other than the lead actor, Akshay Kumar, who is simply mind-blowing as he conquers the high pitches with elan and with perfect Urdu diction! A definite chartbuster! It will definitely be a treat for all Akki's fans to watch him onscreen in his very popular romantic 'avatar'. It's the last number, 'Dharpakad', that sets the signal for this con flick and can easily be classified as a theme song. An entirely situational number that provides a sneak peek into the movie itself, and adds to the narrative. Humorous, satirical, identifiable and very apt lyrics with racy rhythm along with excellent singing by Bappi Lahiri, makes this a highly enjoyable track. And one can easily compare the number with Akki's iconic HERA PHERI number 'Denewala Jab Bhi Deta. Situational and entertaining! Rounding off, a special album indeed. MM Kreem lives up to his melodious reputation by delivering some fine tracks like 'Mujh Mein Tu' and 'Tujh Sang Lagee', which are our pick as well. Himesh's Punjabi outing too will be patronized by the target audience, and moreover the album will garner more popularity when the film releases on 8th February, as most songs are situational and will be appreciated afterwards.