As more female artists emerge within the music scene, it is good to see collaborations happening across the board. One such collaboration that has gone unnoticed but shouldn’t have been is...
As more female artists emerge within the music scene, it is good to see collaborations happening across the board. One such collaboration that has gone unnoticed but shouldn’t have been is between rapper Osama Karamat Ali, who also goes by the stage name Osama Com Laude, and singer-songwriter Maria Unera. He dropped the track a while back. However, look at his 2022 releases and you’ll realize, he is steadfast when it comes to making and releasing music.
In 2022, collaborating with several artists, he has dropped four songs: ‘Main Chick’, ‘Whack Scene’, ‘Options’ and ‘Pull Up’. From the slew of tracks, ‘Options’ is backed by a music video and is a collaboration with Maria Unera. Written and performed by the two musicians, the music video is inspired by Juice WRLD and Ellie Goulding’s ‘Hate Me’ and is about a complicated relationship gone wrong. That may sound tedious but it has an undeniable appeal mostly because it isn’t pretending to be something it isn’t. A rap-pop low fi song that actually fits together in complementary fashion. It isn’t easy to achieve that, especially in the studio but Osama, the Rawalpindi based bi-lingual hip-hop artist knew who to go to get his song just right. Working with long-time collaborator Mrkle, who mixed and mastered the track, it is produced by dotxb, the result is smart. To be fair, the song is carried by Osama than Maria and because of his presence, it is more than tolerable. It’s embedded with a spectrum of emotions and could easily be mistaken for a song coming out of the USA. If this song does pique your curiosity, do check out the rest of the 2022 releases. It shows how Osama can go from a darker tone with a trilogy to something much more appealing without pandering to the crowd.
Rutaba Yakub on reaction to her first solo single from upcoming debut album
Unless you’re living in a cave or simply don’t follow Pakistani music, you will know who Rutaba Yakub is. She is one of the few artists who appeared on the talent-hunt based Nescafe Basement before going onto the resurrected Pepsi Battle of the Bands (with her group) Roots. Rutaba showed an ingenuity that the band’s departure from the series is a mystery.
Of course, Rutaba has been doing a lot since then including appearing on BBC Asian Network where she collaborated with Talal Qureshi. Now embarking on a solo album journey that began with her single, the retro-embedded ‘Anay wala Kal/Ghubaray’, the Saudi-born singer-songwriter has larger ideas for the music she is putting out.
Speaking to Instep, Rutaba noted that while ‘Anay wala Kal/Ghubaray’ sounds like a new-age, retro-funk, bass-driven elements, that is how it is different in terms of sound.”
Associated with a music group called Roots, Rutaba explained that with the former, it is a combination of the band members as well but with this relatively recently released tracked and the album that’ll follow will be more about her identity as a musician and she confesses, “I think this song is a very good start and my favourite track from the album.”
The music video, she revealed, was an effort to combine historical South Asian motif with the current electronic neon vibe and dropped to also set the tone of the upcoming album. The response to the song has been the best so far than previous, Rutaba confessed. “The reinvention of myself is kind of working.”
The D/A Method release third and final album, Sanctuary
A creative alt-rock band, The D/A Method has been around the music scene for approximately a decade and released two magnificent albums: The Great Disillusion (2015) and The Desert Road (2017).
Making a comeback last month with their third studio album, Sanctuary, they also released a complementary music video for a song called ‘Oh, what a time to be alive’ from their album. All the earnings from this album will go to various charities within Pakistan.
Though the band has confirmed Sanctuary as their final album, you have to give them a hear to see how significant their music is to the sonic landscape of music in Pakistan. When the band announced the release of the album, they noted on Facebook last month, “We have just released our third and final album: Sanctuary. The album is available now on all major platforms. We have also made our entire discography free on Bandcamp. Fans can still “pay what they want” and any sales or streaming revenue we receive henceforth will be donated to charities in Pakistan (SOS Children’s Villages and Saylani Welfare Trust).”
They added: “After a decade as a band, we will be parting ways after this release. We leave behind our body of work: three interconnected full-length albums exploring darkness and light that we are all immensely proud of. To all of our fans and everyone we have had the chance to work with along the way: Thank you.”
Sanctuary can be seen as the final chapter in their discography with several members behind the A for Aleph Studio and its off-shoot such A for Aleph Records, the band’s crisp production and arresting music will remain with us for a long time to come. Check out their new song, ‘Oh, what a time to be alive’ and the album that’s available at all major music platforms including and especially BandCamp. The D/A Method includes Usama Siddiq, Umair Dar, Talha Alvie, Daniel Arthur Panjwaneey and Istvan Csabai. In addition, Sanctuary also includes a number of guest musicians.
- Album artwork and layout by Sana Nasir; photography by Humayun Memon with additional artwork editing by Zahra Hassan Shah