The Rich Vegetarian

An Examined Life

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Melodies of an Acquired Taste

A R Rahman's music seems to have gained in complexity over the years. Gone are the days when his melodies used to be simple and hummable. Now some of his compositions are so layered and "textured" (if music can be described thus) that it is difficult to discern a coherent melody, let alone hum along. Another way to describe his music is "atmospheric." Another pseudo-intellectual term? Perhaps. Atmospheric because it melds into the atmosphere of the film, so hearing the music by itself makes you wonder what the heck is going on.

A thought came to me this morning. If one could make a cross-sectional cut across a moment of Rahman's music, what would one see? Layer upon layer of melody and rhythm, seemingly random sounds popping out of nowhere, unintelligible voices talking in foreign languages and a host of other musical elements… How the guy manages to picture all these varied components coming together in a single moment to create one unified sound… beats me. What an imagination.

Been listening to the soundtrack of "Rockstar." Like a lot of Rahman's recent compilations, I began with mixed feelings but I think I'll end up loving most of the tracks. "Katiya Karun" is the song that got me to buy this CD. Playful, mysterious and rambunctious in parts, this song gets me dancing every single time. "Kun Faya Kun" brought me to tears. "Tu ne gale sa lagaaya, tu hi mera hain khudaaya." Yes, that about describes me too.

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