The moment name Aamir Khan is seen in the credits, the word 'quality' comes naturally. Such has been the brand value Aamir has made around him that everything else, whether it is the director, composer or the co-star, comes secondary. Of course with names like Rajkumar Hirani, Kareena Kapoor and Vidhu Vinod Chopra involved, one can't discount the overall package affair that 3 Idiots turns out to be. Still, when it comes to the music of the film, one can't really claim to have huge expectations. Reason being that the composer at the helm of affairs is Shantanu Moitra who hasn't had a single commercially successful album other than Parineeta. Yes, he has been critically acclaimed but due to the kind of music he has created and the genre he has explored, mass acceptance has still eluded him. Even a Lage Raho Munnabhai showed some good sales once the movie turned out to be hugely successful at the box office. This is the reason why one plays 3 Idiots (that has lyrics by Swanand Kirkire) with reasonable, rather than extraordinary, expectations in place - Aamir Khan notwithstanding.
It's a gradual beginning to 'Aal Izz Well' that gives a clear indication of what the film is all about. Arriving with the theme of 'care-a-damn' attitude, 'Aal Izz Well' is completely different from dozens of campus tracks that have been heard over the years. Swanand Kirkire's lyrics make an instant impression while Shantanu's rhythmic treatment ensures that the song would be played in many a campus festivals and student get togethers from here on. Catching the pulse of youth, whether from today, yesterday or tomorrow, this Sonu Nigam and Shaan sung track, which also appears in a deserving 'remix version', belongs to chartbuster variety. One wonders though that why did Shanatanu have to croon like Anu Malik for an interspersing piece?
Only song in the album featuring a female voice comes in the form of 'Zoobi Doobi'. The chosen one here is the obvious name without whom not a single A-list album gets completed today - Shreya Ghoshal. A song-n-dance affair that almost spoofs the conventional rain tracks that have been heard and seen in Bollywood over the decades, 'Zoobi Doobi' combines melody with rhythm with Sonu Nigam joining the show. Belonging to the 50s and 60s variety in the way it has been composed, 'Zoobi Doobi' (which too has a 'remix version' for itself) is good though its longevity would depend upon the way it has been choreographed and the extent to which the film succeeds.
From this point on, the album takes a situational turn, as visible in 'Behti Hawa Sa Tha Woh' which comes next. Starting on a pensive note, the number is about a couple of friends (Madhavan and Sharman Joshi) who are searching for their lost partner (Aamir Khan). The number has a distinct Bengali music touch to it, whether in terms of the way it has been orchestrated, arranged and even sung. With minimal instruments in the background, this number sung by Shaan and Shantanu Moitra describes the character played by Aamir and how he carried a carefree and lively persona. With a hint of sadness to it, 'Behti Hawa' is primarily for the screen.
Just like it's predecessor, 'Give Me Some Sunshine' too has a slow beginning with Sharman Joshi narrating a line about youth being allowed to live life the way they want. Soon after Suraj Jagan starts singing this track about how kids are deprived of their innocence in the world of education that dictates what they should be doing rather than them making a choice. Meanwhile, Sharman keeps interspersing the song with anecdotes from the childhood (experimenting with chemistry, forced to get 99% marks etc...). Yet another campus track, though softer in mode and tone this time around, the song has its high point every time the line 'Give Me Some Sunshine' comes on the forefront.
The finale is interesting with Sonu Nigam coming up with one of his best renditions in recent times. He changes the pitch of his voice extraordinarily well in 'Jaane Nahin Denge Tujhe' which again appears to be the set in a mood where the friends are rooting for each other and making sure that they don't fail in their pursuit for a better life ahead. After singing two popular tracks 'Shukran Allah' [Kurbaan] and 'Don't Say Alvida' [Main Aurr Mrs Khanna], this is yet another quality outing for Sonu Nigam who hits just the right notes. Special mention to Swanand for his words that should make a definite impact in the film's narrative.
3 Idiots is a good quality album that has two super strong tracks - 'Aal Izz Well' and 'Jaane Nahin Denge Tujhe'. Both are poles apart though because while former is for mass audiences, latter should find a perfect placement in the film's narrative. 'Zoobi Doobi' is nice while 'Behti Hawa' and 'Give Me Some Sunshine' would be known more after the film's release. Immense curiosity value around '3 Idiots' would ensure that in the initial days, the album disappears quite quickly from the music stands. After that, it would be the strength of the film and its run at the box office that would do the talking for the album as well.
'Aal Izz Well', 'Jaane Nahin Denge Tujhe', 'Zoobi Doobi'