You expect a heartwarming and soothing, though situational score in Chef which features Saif Ali Khan in the lead. Considering the fact that Chef is an official adaptation of the Hollywood film by the same name, you wait to see though how music by Raghu Dixit (with Amaal Malik as the guest composer) and lyrics by Ankur Tiwari (and Rashmi Virag as the guest lyricist) fits in the narrative.
There is clear Raghu Dixit element on play in the opening number 'Shugal Laga Le' that has a folksy sound to it and doesn't really come across as the one you expect in a film's soundtrack. That said, this one is an upbeat number that should do well to pep up the film's narrative. There is good energy that Raghu brings on board as the composer as well as the singer, though the song's shelf life would be restricted to the film's play in theaters.
It's the sound of guitar that kick-starts the proceedings for 'Darmiyaan'. By the very title, this one comes across as the kind of song with sad undertones. This is exactly what you get as Raghu Dixit takes charge as a singer as well with only guitar as his accompanying partner. Ankur Tiwari's lyrics bring the right emotions into play for this song that should play as a part of the montage sequence in the film.
After 'Shugal Laga Le', it is time for yet another upbeat number to come in next in the form of 'Tan Tan'. Nikhita Gandhi is the singer for this track that has an old world sound to it and has a restricted appeal as well due to its situational setting. The kind of number that reminds one of the 'Cha Cha Cha' sound from the era gone by, 'Tan Tan' is passable.
Shahid Mallya is brought on board for 'Khoya Khoya' which, as the title suggests, appears to be an extension of 'Darmiyaan'. Well, while that is exactly the case, it in fact turns out to be ultra-boring as not just does it sound sad, it also makes you wonder what rest of the soundtrack has to offer. A kind of song that is guaranteed to slow down the narrative of a film, 'Khoya Khoya' can be given a quick skip.
Thankfully, there are some good moments that return to the soundtrack with Vishal Dadlani bringing his experience into play for 'Banjara'. Though this one is strictly situational as well, at least it is peppy while it lasts and is in the same mould as 'Shugal Laga Le' in all dimensions, be it composing, writing or singing.
Guest composer-lyricist team of Amaal Malik and Rashmi Virag come together for 'Tere Mere' and the song ends up making an instant impression. A beautifully composed number that has Malik brothers stamp to it, what with Armaan Malik stepping behind the mike, 'Tere Mere' is an all-around melodic track that also boasts of some heartfelt lyrics. Play this one and you would like to hear it on loop.
Though the music of Chef is mixed bag, by and large it does its job well as a situational outing.
‘Tere Mere’, ‘Shugal Laga Le’, ‘Banjara’