Switzerland based vocalist Tej Hundal is back for the long haul with illustrious composer and music producer Ravi Bal, responsible for Malkit Singh’s Midas Touch, Surjit Khan’s Headliner and most recently Avtar Maniac’s Haneri, enlisted for musical duties on this 8-track solo project.
Considering Hundal’s background it is only apt that this fresh venture be named Punjabian Da Raaj. With Ravi Bal at the ship’s helm, his unmistakeable knack of nurturing fledgling talent is key to this partnership coming into fruition. Having a track record elevating the careers of the likes of Lakhwinder Wadali and Preet Harpal amongst others, Hundal’s potent vocal chords are ideal ingredients for Bal to wield his wand upon and yield results for an international audience.
A turbocharged curtain-raiser lies in wait as the title track Punjabian Da Raaj is intended to set proceedings off to a flyer and does precisely that with plenty of gusto from Tej Hundal who is propelled by Ravi Bal’s indomitable musical input. As the expression goes, “start as you mean to go on” and Hundal does not hesitate in fluent vocal delivery all the while maintaining an all-important razor-edge on this stirring opener with the iconic GT Road at its heart.
PDR also gives an insight into his astonishing, unending range and natural ability to hit challenging notes at ease. Famed for his seamless innovation and capacity to inject spark into his work, the lynchpin Ravi Bal once more serves up a pumped-up, beat-centric composition designed to take you by surprise on Naina Vale Teer (RBP Head Bop Mix). Despite the unfamiliar surroundings, Hundal’s versatility shines through ensuring he does not play second-fiddle.
Teri Fida sees the duo completely ease off the accelerator and create a graceful, easy-listening experience which neatly unites a traditional folk composition alongside a contemporary, minimal soundscape shaped by understated synths and all-around composed exploits on keys.
The ante is upped on Hon Takre (Ravi Bal Karkoo Mix) where Tej Hundal shifts into combative mode as the vocalist engages a stranglehold on the RBP arrangement to ruthless effect! The pair produce another feat of agile, inspired execution on the urban-angled number coming in the form of Pehle Tor Di.
Accomplished songstress Rani Randeep harmoniously pitches in at the tail-end of album to join the lead protagonist for the scintillating party duet entitled Dollar Ta Pound (Ravi Bal Paisa Mix) with the “Wizard” Ravi Bal integral to making it rain! Diamond-cut chords galore, tumbi strewn wildly and signature RBP percussion will compel you to clap along as both singers perform at full-tilt. However, Tej Hundal’s ace in the hole, a jaw-dropping switch in singing octave takes centre stage and equips the chorus with extra firepower!