Rohail Hyatt

Khuda Kay Liye

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Khuda Kay Liye was one of the most critically acclaimed films to come out of Pakistan, and the movie's soundtrack definitely satisfies expectations, including a few pleasant surprises to boot. The film is the brainchild of director/writer Shoaib Mansoor, who started his creative career as a producer and composer associated with the pop band Vital Signs, a highly successful group during the '80s. Given his past, one can envision the emphasis of this film's music, particularly given that Mansoor roped in Vital Signs founding member Rohail Hyatt to handle the music composition job. Interestingly, most of the songs on this offering -- like "Duniya Ho," "Bandya," and "Hamaray Hain" as well as the title track, "Khuda Kay Liye" -- carry '80s pop sensibilities similar to the ones that made Vital Signs a huge sensation in Pakistan. A composed male vocal over rhythmic drumbeats and synthesizer-based melodies forms the core of Vital Signs' music, and is very evident on this album as well. Khuda Kay Liye soundtrack elements that won't go unnoticed include the slick production and prominence of diverse musical styles in a very progressive blend. Scattered among the trendy pop songs are Indian classical-oriented numbers like "Tiluk Kamod." Yet, the most innovative as well as remarkable track is "Allah Hoo," a traditional prayer for the almighty gracefully hand-carved into a fresh-sounding modern masterpiece. For the most part, this song merely consists of a chant of the titular two words, although a haunting electronic beat starts after exactly a minute and blends trendily with the prominent and loud chant, taking it to altogether different levels -- it's a knockout. A female vocal come in later but doesn't snag the pace, which by now has accommodated chants, words, and everything in between. "Allah Hoo" is an indication of the composer's artistic maturation, breaking away from the conventional and giving an unsullied and fresh look to even the most regularly used cultural phrases. This song could be mystical for some listeners, and for others either an innovative piece that demands careful attention or just another chilled-out track. DJ Aqeel provides a club-house dance remix of this song.

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