Overload: ‘Mujra is a cultural reality’

Overload is set to launch their latest video for “Neray Aaa” — a song originally featured in Choorian

Overload’s drummer and vocalist Farhad Humayun
LAHORE: At the apartment of Overload’s drummer and vocalist Farhad Humayun, a contingent of celebrities and socialites gathered for the last-day shooting of their latest single “Neray Aaa” — a rendition of a Punjabi-classical song from Syed Noor’s film Choorian.

“Mujra is a cultural reality,” explains Overload’s keyboardist Shiraz Siddiq. “You can’t close your eyes and deny this reality in our society. We are doing this to celebrate this reality.”

The latest track, slated to be released on Eid, gives a contemporary twist to an otherwise classical Punjabi song the original video which featured Nargis’ dance. After seeking permission from Syed Noor, Overload members believe that the song is a unique way of introducing Lollywood in the country’s contemporary music scene.

“He (Noor) was very happy that someone had come up with this idea,” said Siddiq.

On the set of the video shoot, Humayun was spotted sporting body paints, which seemed reminiscent of a character from X-Men. “There are different phases which influence the work we do. Right now, we are going through a humorous phase as we are not really taking things seriously at the moment.”

Humayun said that by taking on the lead vocals, he was able to show a different side of his personality to his fans. Earlier as a drummer, he could not jump around and interact enough with his fans.

Humayun’s apartment has now become the band’s headquarters. Recently, they started a recording initiative called Live at The Apartment, and are collaborating with other local bands to do covers of popular rock songs. Shiraz said that the apartment had turned into a stage for the band’s various activities like hanging out, partying, jamming and now shooting for the upcoming music video.

The new single includes a diverse vocal range. Though there are some heavy percussions, it is the guitars and horn solos that stand out in the composition.

The video of “Neray Aaa” is directed by Armughan Hassan, who recently edited Ali Azmat’s video for the song “Bum Pata” and Shoaib Mansoor’s film Bol. Through a simple storyline, the band tries to portray that in life you are inevitably going to be corrupted.

“The idea is that if you’re going to do something right, you have to do several wrongs to get there. The story revolves around a new kid who enters a party and eventually gets corrupted because of the surrounding environment,” said Humayun. “This song was juxtaposed with what we relate to musically.”

The music video will feature model Sabina Pasha in the lead and cameos by Ammar Belal, Aaminah Haq, Nomi Qamar, Quratulain Baloch, Club Caramel’s Kiran and Adnan Sarwar. Overall, the production and set preparations showed a very interesting and creative concept which is expected to get a positive response from  viewers.

Humayun maintains that the band is still the loudest band in Pakistan but since live shows have slowly decreased over the last couple of years, the band had mellowed slightly. “We are still the loudest, but we cannot be so loud on CD because people can always turn down the volume,” said the front-man.


Published in The Express Tribune, July 21st, 2011.





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