Tamil film Rameswaram has the life of Srilankan refugees in the Mandapam camp as its backdrop. The film is made reflecting the pain and pathos of the ill-fated victims of the Sri Lankan ethnic strife who have been forced to flee their motherland and seek refuge on alien shores.
The film set in the refugee camp in the Mandapam camp at Rameswaram tells the love story of a young Sri Lankan refugee and the local landlord's daughter.
Jeeva who gave a scintillating performance in the recently released Katrathu Thamizh is the male lead while Bhavana is the heroine in this film directed by Selvam, formerly a journalist.
Rameswaram has captivating music scored fittingly by Sri Lankan music director Niru.
In the opening number Elloreyum eathippoga, Manicka Vinayagam, Haricharan, Surya and Raeshmi sing about the pathetic plight of those who live hoping for better days and desperately waiting for a ship which will bring them succour. It is a pleasure to hear Manicka Vinayagam's forceful voice after a long time.
Elloreyum is a vibrant piece starting with heavy percussion with the singers infusing energy into it. Lilting instrumentation with flute strains dominating and the folksy tune make this an interesting track, though Raeshmi's kiddish voice mars its charm a bit. Lyricist Kabilan paints a perfect picture of the refugees who wait hoping against hope for better days.
Alaigalin Osai is a romantic duet with quaint lyrics, again by Kabilan. Haricharan and Kalyani with supportive orchestral accompaniment give voice to the sentimental lyrics. Impressive rhythm, powerful chorus bit, excellent background sounds and flute passages melting your soul all together make this a melodious musical soiree.
Then comes the pick of this album Naan Tharai Nila by Swetha Mohan whose voice has this uncanny resemblance to that of her mother, Sujatha. It is sheer melody which steals the heart and will keep the listener glued to it. Swetha's honey-sweet warbling with raaga build up and classical touch, excellent instrumentation with expansive violin interludes and Yugabharathy's meaningful lyrics all together provide a singularly lilting experience. A number worth many repeated listen.
Nettrirunthom Engel is a powerful yet poignant piece by reputed classical singer O S Arun. Na Muthukumar's lyrics are full of pathos and contradictory emotions like foreboding, apprehension and hope. Orchestra sounding like turbulent waves thrashing against the shores, adds to the track's vibrancy. Arun's rendition with classical touches adds a hypnotic quality to it. The number with nostalgic connotations evokes memories of old M.S.Viswanathan songs.
Yaetho Senja Pulla by Ranjith and Chinmayi with excellent rhythm, delightful violin expositions and significant lyrics by Yugabharathy is an energetic piece. Ramjet blazes off interplaying power and belligerence in A R Rahman style. Chinmayi softens and balances it with her smooth and harmonious rendition. The chorus and instrumentation remind you of Rahman's Dil Se tracks.
The concluding lengthy flute theme piece is a highly interesting finale.
Niru's Rameswaram album is an enjoyable montage of musical moods and moments without any disturbing contemporary trimmings.