IWMBuzz.com reviews ZEE5’s Lockdown!!

Review of ZEE5’s Lockdown: Diametrically opposite musical sensibilities amalgamate to make rousing, uplifting music

Music transcends borders, cultures, religions and sensibilities. People across the world, from Timbuktu to Texas, from Jhumri Talaiya to Jacksonville, get lured inadvertently, into the mesh of lilting melodies. Nothing unites diversity as consummately as music does.

The World Wide Web is the technological equivalent of music. It transcends boundaries and religions, unifying people across the world through an unshakable, invisible connection that binds them together.

The coming together of the two – music and the web – is bound to be explosive. Ladies and gentlemen, presenting the meeting of the twain – in ZEE5’s spanking new web series- Lockdown.

The show promises an electrifying premise- digital music superstars collaborate with the doyens of Bollywood music, to produce scintillating sounds, the kind we’ve never heard before.

What makes the show beyond brilliant is its format- the format is creative and imaginative, hogging centre-stage, keeping us glued to our seats and ensuring that there’s never a dip in the tempo of the show. But…..that’s not all there is to it, my friends. It gets progressively interesting from here.

One musical superstar from the virtual world is paired with a diametrically opposite musician from Bollywood; the two are locked together for 24 hours in charming, heart-stirring locations, designed to get their creative juices flowing, and challenged to produce two dazzling reprises of popular Bollywood numbers– an ingenious and tangible result of the alliance. Everything- from choosing the number to be remixed, to the music, rap interludes or additional lyrics if any, and the video– yes, just everything has to be completed in those 24 hours. Interesting? You bet!

The pairings are remarkably stimulating too– Kailash Kher, with Raja Kumari; Badshah, with Jonita Gandhi; Harrdy Sandhu with Neha Bhasin; Raftaar with Thaikkudam Bridge; Monali Thakur with Mickey Singh; Benny Dayal with Bryden & Parth; Shirley Setia with Sachin-Jigar, are the ones already decided, out of a total of ten. That is ten pairings and twenty melodious numbers over ten episodes–a veritable bonanza for music lovers. Magic is bound to happen when you have a troupe of artists as eclectic as this one.

The first episode featured singing sensation, Jonita Gandhi, with music maestro, Badshah, while the second episode had Sufi virtuoso, Kailash Kher pairing with Grammy Award nominee and internet sensation, Raja Kumari. Both artists that make up each pair have nothing in common with each other. For example, Rajakumari, who has written songs for Iggy Azealia and Gwen Stefani, and incorporates Indian classical notes into hip-hop and rap, effortlessly straddling the East and West, collaborates with Kailash Kher, who imbues his soulful numbers with Indian folk and Sufi strains.

Imagine the result of such collaboration- edgy, psychedelic creations that one listens to with wide- eyed wonder. The high-octane, foot-thumping, head-banging beats create a rousing crescendo of musical passion, culminating in a grand, almost orgasmic, climax of rhythmic ecstasy. One has to tune into the show, to appreciate the ingenuity, efforts and scale of the production. A truly outstanding creation, if we must say so. Bravo, ZEE5! We expected nothing less!

The settings of the collaborations are brilliant too. While Kailash Kher and Rajakumari were locked into picturesque Norbulingka Institute in Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, Badshah and Jonita Gandhi get locked in at the War Memorial in Chandigarh to make music together.

The web series has been produced by none other than Badshah, the nouveau king of rap, Bollywood music and what have you. In fact, it is the first web show created by his newly-minted production house, Afterhours. One Digital Entertainment are the co-producers of the show, proving that this production house means business when it comes to bringing forth innovative, meaningful content for the public at large and good content aficionados in particular.

Music has the power to move grown men to tears. Soulful Sufi strains or soothing country beats can make the most stoic of people close their eyes and let the poignant, melancholic notes seep into their soul. There was a glaring need for a musical web reality show in the Indian content space.

Lockdown is a worthy contender to fill in that need, with style, substance and savoir faire!

The show is a treat for lovers of fusion music, and a must watch, in our opinion. We, at IWMBuzz, give it a 3.5/5.


(Written by Rashmi Paharia)

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