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AR Rahman back to his best with beautiful 'Azhagiye' for Mani Ratnam's Kaatru Veliyidai

With its perfect (mock) acapella, clap beats and a gentle guitar strain, 'Azhagiye' is a return to the top of the class for Rahman. 

Shriram Iyengar

There is something about the Mani Ratnam-AR Rahman combination that makes them such a hit. Bombay, Roja, Dil Se, Thiruda Thiruda, Guru and now, by the sound of it, Kaatru Veliyidai. The first track, 'Azhagiye', from Ratnam's next Karthi-Aditi Rao Hydari-starrer carries a signature of Rahman at the peak of his compositional powers. 

Starting with a wonderful little (mock) acapella sung by Karthi and his boys from the Air Force, the song is a pitch-perfect combination of beats, guitar and claps that will see it rise to the top of the charts. From the empty theatre where they start singing to the grand ballroom where Karthi exchanges glances with Aditi Rao Hydari, the song captures the element of romance aided by Ravi Varman's mellow visuals. 

The minute-long teaser of the song, released on Wednesday, has already seen more than a million views. Its touch of western fusion with hip Tanglish (Tamil, English) lyrics add to the entire charm. Sung by Arjun Chandy, Haricharan and Jonita Gandhi, the song has backup vocals by Sid Sriram, Bawa Sahni, and Keerthi Sagathia. 

Kaatru Veliyidai stars Karthi, Hydari, and is directed by Ratnam. The film is scheduled for release in theatres on 7 April.