Vishal-Shekhar's Telugu movie debut has an amusing title, Venkatesh and a lot of promise and potential. Bappi Lahiri did it, B&W had Hindi imports before that and recently Ismail Darbar composed for a Telugu flick (Vishnu). The new entrants into Telugu musical world have done a good job with the music, but the Telugu composers need not fear-no one is taking away their glory from them.
Bangundey Bagundey The instrumental could be called their signature soft tunes, with a little Hindi movie charm and bankable beats-that you can immediately hum along with. The good thing is that it doesn't sound like the lyrics (courtesy Chandrabose) were translated from Hindi. So the result is fresh-sounding music for Telugu, with all the warmth of Telugu intact. Vijay Prakash and Hansika sing sweetly to accompany the sugary melody. ***
Oh Sunita Shankar Mahadevan renders this teasing little number, the 'Aye Shivani' type (remember Sanjay Dutt's Khoobsurat) but a little peppier and with a lot of 'Nahin Chodunga' in it. Chandrabose keeps his lines simple as they come and the song is obviously situational. ***
Shava Shava Balle Balle Not bad but not great either. Just another dance number starting with the oh-so-boring (now) "Shava Shava.." wasn't that era over? You wish. But it makes up with Chandrabose's lines and some forced energy. Good only when listened to on full volume; Mahadevan and Mahalaxmi do a good job with the playback. Grows on you but nothing new. ***
Merupula Rajesh and Shreya Ghoshal render this duet straight from the 90s. It actually sounds like Ilayaraja minus genius touch-Telugu music enthusiasts will get this statement. It's nice enough and a pleasant hearing experience, with Chandrabose doing a good job with catchy and easy lyrics-no fancy words, no tongue twisters. A straightforward and hummable duet. ***.25
Enduko Sonu Nigam (after a long time) in his element accompanied by Mahalaxmi sing to Chandrabose's lyrics. The fresh, just-awakened and interesting beats along with good playback and lyrical quality infused with the timely chorus makes the song a competitor for the pick of the album, tying up with the last song of the album. ***1/2
Valla Valla Baby A really good end to the album, Valla Valla is signing off with a flourish. Sunidhi Chauhan with her dynamite voice with Kay Kay (no less) infuse energy into this high voltage dance number. ***1/2
Last Word Vishal-Shekhar have given consistently decent to super hit music, and this falls somewhere in between. For now, the music is pretty good with three catchy songs and nothing that you'll need to skip.
It's not "The album of the year", and that way with all the hype and expectations, this struggles to reach to the mark. But that aside, when viewed without any presumptions, it doesn't disappoint.