Director Shehzad Rafique, whose latest project Ishq Khuda is still in production, feels grateful. “If any success comes out of this film, it’s because my team worked very hard – but if it fails, the blame will solely be mine to take,” he says in a fatherly tone.
The soundtrack of his upcoming film is making waves and the album includes the well-known and powerful voices of Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, Shazia Manzoor and Sanam Marvi.
For his last project, Mohabbatein Sachiyyan, Rafique went all out and signed up some of India’s leading vocalists such as Sonu Nigam, Shreya Goshal, Sunidhi Chauhan and Richa Sharma. And now, for Ishq Khuda, Rafique has taken one of Lollywood’s oldest and renowned music directors, Wajahat Attray, on board.
“All the soundtracks I have directed over the years have included a tint of classical music,” Attray tells The Express Tribune. “I feel classical music is something which we just cannot ignore.” He admits that Rafique has gone the extra mile to make sure the audience gets to hear something fresh and new as far as the film’s music is concerned. “The option was there to return to India and produce the soundtrack,” he says, referring to the format of Mohabbatein Sachiyyan. “But we made a conscious decision to bring together a modern yet classical blend here.”
“Rafique puts a huge emphasis on his music, which has meant that no matter what type of film he is making the audience is receiving something fresh,” adds Attray.
The film maintains a classic Lollywood aesthetic and sound with high production value. The shots are set in scenic mountainous locations, with Ahsan Khan seen in intimate scenes with co-stars Wiam Dhamani, Meera and Saima.
Most noticeable is the collaborative effort of Rahat and Manzoor for this film. For Manzoor, Ishq Khuda is her comeback into playback singing as it is her first soundtrack since she left the industry 12 years ago. The pairing is a dream combination for the composer, who gets to experiment with different somber and light moods. Incidentally, Manzoor’s return means a revisiting of the beginnings for Attray, who happened to be the first person to introduce her to film after she had made her big break on television.
“I met Shazia when she was starting out with a television show. I heard her voice and thought to myself, ‘here is someone that would definitely make an impact,’” says Attray. “The same year, I introduced her to film.” He also feels that her return is another sign that heralds better days for the local film industry.
Ishq Khuda’s soundtrack is definitely worth a listen, with tracks like Booaey Khol Bawan Dey and Do Nain Ghazali Marr Gaey standing out. The songs are aided by the capabilities of the two singers and showcase an innate competitiveness between them as they look to build on each other’s voices and reach for something memorable.
“People have asked why we have used only three artists, and my response to them is that these are songs that only Shazia and Rahat could have made worthwhile,” says Attray. “This is why we decided to use recording artists from here — talent here is the best in the world.”
Marvi’s only song on the album, Sauf Supari Wala Paan, is something that fans should look out for. It is an item song, which stars Saima and features Shaan as well. “After a long time, we have an item song. The way Sanam Marvi has handled it, the song will be a hit with the audiences,” says Attray.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 9th, 2013.
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