My thoughts on Satyan Mahalingam’s debut venture Vizhithiru
1) Stay Awake
Singers: C Sathya, Satyan Mahalingam, SS Thaman, Tha Prophecy and Sharmila
Lyrics: Subramaniam Nandi, Tha Prophecy
The album starts off with the energetic “Stay Awake”. When the song started I felt, “Oh why this vocoded vocals??? Is this going to be a standard template song?”
I was proved wrong with the clever mix of mridangam with a nice techno rhythm with a not so overpowering neat electric guitar base in the song. Amidst the eurogate kind of sequence in the background, around 0.53 minutes, emerges a sparkling retro sounding track with an appealing beat filled with nice FX effects. I could visualize a nice space voyage kind of setup. The singers deserve a special mention with an interesting mix of C Sathya,Satyan Mahalingam,SS Thaman and the Toronto based Rajeevan Sathyaseelan better known as Tha Prophecy. The female singer brings in a subtle dimension to the song. The electric guitar around 1.50 is neat. The kid’s vocal around 3.10 was unexpected. An energetic start to the album.
2) Vellai Irave
Singers: GV Prakash, Ramya NSK
Lyrics: Dhamayandhi, Tha Prophecy
This song could be easily misunderstood as a Harris Jeyaraj number. With an eclectic mix of soothing guitar strums and breezy vocals, this number is very pleasant to listen. An apt choice of singers makes this song an aural pleasure. The beats are also not heavy and sound melodic. The jazzy romantic saxophone in the first interlude is a stunner. G.V.Prakash starts off in a spectacular fashion. The bass drop has been used to nice effect without affecting the song. Sounds western but addictive. Short and Sweet …
Singers: Priyadharshini, T Rajendar
Lyrics: T Rajendar
The album gets a kuthu touch through the ever versatile T Rajendar. It is an outright kuthu number interwoven with a powerful trumpet section and not to forget the tapping beat section. The track somehow sounds déjà vu reminding a few earlier numbers. The composer however elevates with nice atmospheric pads in the background in the appropriate places.
4)Aazhi Alai (F)
Singer: Vaikom Vijayalakshmi
Lyrics: Satyan Mahalingam
Vaikom Vijayalakshmi brings tears with her affirmative vocals. A soul wrenching number that has all in it to stand amidst the times to come. The composer surprises with this superior composition that has all the elements in right proportions. The lyrics deserve applause as it forms the backbone of this song. The composer shows his mettle here that he can pen the lyrics as well. The clarinet/oboe, woodwinds, strings and harp section in the prelude just overflows with emotion. The string section and the entire arrangement deserve a special mention. The string section easily belongs to the top league like you hear in the compositions of A.R.Rahman and Yuvan Shankar. It is more Yuvan here.. A standout number…Hats off..
5) Pon Vidhi
Singers: Santhosh Narayanan
Lyrics: Subramaniam Nandi
Santhosh Narayan sounds more funky than in his own compositions. This song easily belongs to the 80’s. It is a very innovative number with a great arrangement. Arrangement??? This belongs to the acappella genre with only the singers using their voices to emulate the instruments. A casual listener will easily be fooled by the sound design of the song. It appears and pretends to have a nice beat section with lots of finger snaps, choir pad and bass section. But all are only voices which gives us a intoxicating effect all together. Other composers!!!!!!!! Beware!!!!
6) Aazhi Alai (M)
Lyrics: Satyan Mahalingam
The same song again makes an appearance but this time with singer Alphonse. The singer infuses a different feel to this song. It is a very difficult song to sing. Very effective.
7) Kolai Vaall
Singers: Sri Charan, Sunandhan, Vijay Antony
Lyrics: Paavendar Bharathidasan, Satyan Mahalingam
The album ends off with another energetic number sung by Sri Charan,Sunandhan and Vijay Antony. It starts off with a nice hip hop rhythm pattern filled with saw pad punches. The rap section and the super saw along with the string sections takes us back to the eighties. The laser kicks along with effective bass arpeggios and the string runs are very nostalgic. This song has been programmed well. It brings back some of the nostalgic early 90’s sound which is very effective. I never knew Vijay Antony could sing this well.
A very interesting debut by the composer Satyan Mahalingam.
Kudos for giving us a neat album. Wish to hear more diverse arrangements in his future projects.