Since releasing their debut album, Ailan-e-Jang, the music group has consistently released new songs.
ou can’t help but applaud Karakoram, a Lahore-based music group, who have quietly replaced the indefinable space left by the much-cherished and now defunct Entity Paradigm (EP) for various reasons including the rise and rise of its front-man, Fawad Khan.
Other members moved on as well and seem to be pursuing either different roles within the industry or have said goodbye to pop culture on the whole.
However, when a band like Karakoram arrives, we are overjoyed because it isn’t making a conscious effort to become the next EP. They are best described as an alternative, neo-rock group. But unlike EP, after dropping a full-length debut album, they are not resting on its success or focusing more on being session players or dealing with inner fights within the band.
Karakoram consists of Sherry Khattak on vocals and guitars, Omair Farooq on bass, Bilawal Lahooti on drums, Zain Peerzada and Annan Noukhez on guitars. Now back with their newest zinger, ‘Gol Chakkar’ featuring the iconic guitar maestro, Faraz Anwar, this band is flying towards a different dimension.
From the onset, we know this song is not playing it safe as ferocious guitars kick off the sonic experience. Karakoram’s own sound mixed with Faraz Anwar is nothing short of an exhilarating experience. Lyrically, it is a song that projects the idea of letting go, of living and letting others live, and shunning the very common feeling of hate. Dismissing gossipmongers and those who are kind to your face but talk behind your back, the song calls out on contradiction and fragility of human beings.
Dressed in all white against a white backdrop, the music video plays with an austerity of palette. A snake is also featured in the music video but telling what the narrative is meant to showcase would be taking away the mysterious, dark element embedded by director Fida Moin.
Not pandering to the culture of electronic in music, this is an out and out rock song that brings to mind the early days of Soundgarden in terms of building a comparison.
The song – lyrically, sonically and visually – is well thought out, which is why it works.
Since releasing their album, Ailan-e-Jang (with former EP member Xulfi mixing and producing) the record (in 2021), Karakoram has stayed busy. They have released experimental versions of some their songs or acoustic versions, played live shows when the opportunity presents itself and released new material such as ‘Duur’, ‘Zindagi’ and ‘Kyun’ with Hasan Raheem.
If you’re missing that furious rock element within the present music scene, or a song that is ultimately uplifting and is visually mysterious, drop everything (well, not everything) but almost everything and give ‘Gol Chakkar’ a listen.