I belong to the generation that knew ‘Dil Dil Pakistan’ by heart even before they learned to say their ABCs. And then came ‘Jazba-e-Junoon’, which went onto become the unofficial anthem for our cricket-crazy nation.
However, the trend for artists to include at least one patriotic song per album seemed to have gradually diminished in the following years, with new artists producing songs that mostly featured love or social issues as their main themes. In recent years, very few patriotic songs have greeted our ears among which String’s ‘Main Bhi Dekhoon Ga’ and Ali Azmat’s ‘Josh-e-Junoon’, albeit sung for a corporate brand, remain notable
So, it was no wonder that when I heard ‘Naya Pakistan’ for the first time, I instantly felt strong pangs of nostalgia hitting me inside.
‘Naya Pakistan’ – bringing together some of the biggest names in Pakistani music
An effort to revive hope and patriotism amid the current abysmal state of affairs in Pakistan, ’Naya Pakistan’ marks the union of two of the biggest bands in Pakistan’s music history – Vital Signs and Junoon. Calling themselves the Vital Junoonians, the song was created as a result of a collaborative effort by former Vital Signs band members Junaid Jamshed, Shahi Hasan and Nusrat Hussain along with Junoon and Vital Signs alum Salman Ahmad.
Having generated a considerable amount of buzz both on mainstream and social media even before its release, the song’s audio version was officially unveiled on the promised date of February 22 and had managed to receive close to 30,000 plays by the end of the day.
A passionate message of patriotism
Opening with Junaid’s mesmerizing rendition of the phrase ‘InshaAllah’, the song breaks into Salman’s signature guitar riffs that make ‘Naya Pakistan’ quite reminiscent of the music he created for Junoon. Spelling out a message of optimism, the lyrics – a combined effort at penmanship by Salman and Aania Shah – urge people to contribute their bit to bring about a positive change in the country.
The spirited chorus is a repetition of ‘InshaAllah’, although once the song starts, it is Salman who renders his voice throughout with backing vocals from Nusrat. Due to Junaid’s earlier reluctance to be a part of the song, his vocals have been kept limited to the beginning without any music playing in the background.
All in all ’Naya Pakistan’ is a laudable effort from the stalwarts of Pakistan’s music industry. Written from the heart and soulfully sung, the song manages to resurrect patriotic sentiments that sometimes seem to get lost in the despair that surrounds us in today’s times. The chorus, skillfully arranged by Shahi Hassan, will not only have you humming along but will also compel you to keep the song on repeat for a good while. Here is hoping that such collaborative efforts will be continued in the days to come as well.