I liked Deva better when he was copying Ilaiyaraja and later in the mid-90's when he came up with some good original tunes and some good 'inspirations' in Kaadal Kottai . Now he has gone shopping again and comes up with tunes the whole world is familiar with.
Ajith, with recent hits like Dheena, plays nine roles (like Shivaji Ganesan did in Navaratri ). This school drop-out and car racer has undergone nine surgeries, thanks to two accidents on the track. But when you see him dance in Dheena or Kandukondain Kandukondain , what you find is grace and intensity. Who can believe that this man has had three discs removed and several dead nerve endings!
Ajith is reported to
have put on weight for his role in Citizen
which he hopes will fetch him the national award. His role model, he says, is Kamala Hassan. Incidentally, Kaadal Kottai, in which he was the hero, was remade in Hindi as Sirf Tum did win a national award.
Citizen is directed by Saravanan Subbaiah,
and looks like a political thriller. All the best Ajith, and hope
Deva's minus marks for copying don't affect you! The other faces in
the film are Meena and Vasundhara Das, who does an 'item' number and
a comic suicide scene like Dharmendra in
Merkke udittha by Tipu seems to have some originality, notwithstanding some Rahman-like interludes with a lone flute floating dreamily into violin cascades. Tipu has sung some hits in the recent past, in films like Minnale and Dheena.
Chikku mukku by Shankar Mahadevan and Sadhana Sargam is a copying feat. It has shades of Enigma in the interlude, the exact chords of Neil Sedaka's Oh Carol, and a note for note lift of the refrain from R D Burman's Oh jaane jaan .
The whistle on I like you and the main tune sung by Vasundhara Das I have heard before. This song comes on for the TV promos. The key is way too high for Vasundhara. Anu Malik has got her to sing wonderfully in the Aks number Aaja gufaon mein, and
Deva ought to hear that song before he does his next number
There's some 1970's stuff from Abba's Take a chance in Pookaara by Shankar Mahadevan and Vasundhara Das. Again too high pitched for Vasundhara. She switches to a lower octave when it becomes just impossible to go any higher. Such mismanagement of a voice... Sounds like a trashed track from a Modern
Talking album. And then a Kannalane (from
Bombay)-style interlude with sargams, dholak and all that.
Vairamuthu's lyrics are the smart Tamil-English combo which is all the rage, laser payum kanne and
Ayyo ayyo I like you!
And the subject is love, wooing and making eyes, with faded images
of flowers, sun rising in an unexpected direction, things like that,
and aan puyale (did they think 'maelstorm' means
'malestorm' and translate it accordingly?!)
Really, have Deva's creative brains gone for a walk? He may feel he can get away with copied tunes, but he must remember that in this 'global village' of Napster and music television, there will be quite a few people who will catch him out.
S Suchitra Lata
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