It is finally here. Badshah drops his debut studio album after teasing his fans for round and about 2 years. ‘O.N.E.’ provides his listeners an insight to his musicality when he is not involved with Bollywood projects. He has already dropped glamorous visuals for ‘DJ Wale Babu’ in 2015 and ‘Mercy’ in 2017 which were mainstream hits and went viral.
There is no denying the fact that on the first listen, the album does sound commercially biased, but it would be wrong to say that the album is not hip-hop. Badshah dropped bars in ‘Heartless’ which is a collaboration with Aastha Gill. He highlights how a celebrity might be a noble soul who does no wrong but is misunderstood by the world. The video for the track is already trending and has crossed more than a few Million views.
My favourite bars of the album were from this track as follows –
“Naa chhod aise aas
Aaunga main tere paas
Jaise registaan mein kisi pyase ko pani
Jaise marne ke baad koi aakhri nishani jaise
Saansein mile usey
Jiska nikalne waala ho dum
Aise milenge hum…”
The first time you hear Badshah, its easy to mistake him for yet another Bollywood rapper, but all that changes when you hear him go ham on Raxstar’s track, ‘Ego (The remix)’. The soundscape of the album reminded us of the very same paradox. Badshah has played it safe but he has done so very intelligently.
The content of the album has a rather widespread spectrum, one end of the spectrum has tracks like ‘Jaavi Na’ which is based around a romantic relationship which is clearly oriented for his fans in New Delhi and Punjab and the other end is marked by a track like, ‘Take Off’ which is a self boasting anthem. It’s a new age trap banger and has sonic elements from what is currently trending in the American Hip-Hop scene.
You gotta be a big deal in the Indian music scene to get someone like Sunidhi Chauhan to get on the track, ‘Aashiq Awaara’. This track seems to have the potential to be dominant on the radio for quite some time. The album has something for everyone, it comprises of radio hits which will be played on the FM and the night clubs but then it also has tracks like ‘Right Up There’ and ‘No Limit’ which are straight up rap songs and have the independent vibe.
‘Right Up There’ is a new school trap banger which features Lisa Mishra and in the track he claims he is at the top on the Desi rap scene because of his hard work and dedication. ‘No Limit’ is all about breaking through all benchmarks and setting new unattainable ones. Both of these tunes are produced by Delhi’s own, ‘Sez on the Beat’, who never disappoints.
The album sounds rich and Badshah himself has done most of the production. Sez has produced 2 tracks as mentioned above and The Boss has produced ‘Take Off’ and ‘Aise Na Dekh Mujhe’ which sounds monumental. Lyrically the album consists of bars but has more of libretto which a common listener can relate to and enjoy the music.
However, a collaboration with Raftaar or any other forerunner of the Indian rap scene would’ve been something to look forward to on the album. Hate it or love the album is going to do rounds on the TV, internet and radio and as already mentioned it has something for everyone to listen to and vibe with!