Karachi-based rock band Nishtar Park has released its single, Kuttay. The release marks the debut of the seven-member group. Nishtar Park’s music can be defined as indie, rock n’ roll and fusion.
Listen full song:
About the band
The band mates started playing together back in 2010 during their time at St. Patrick’s High School in Karachi and previously called the group ‘EMB’. In December 2015, they reconfigured the lineup and renamed the band to ‘Nishtar Park’.
‘Nishtar Park’ comprises seven members who have the following roles:
Ali Raj – vocals
Ahsun Tariq – rhythm guitars
Mikhyle Anthony – lead guitars
Vernon Arthur – bass
Shane Anthony – drums/percussions
Arnold Anthony – drums/guitars
Abdullah Ibrahim – keys/tabla
Since all the members draw their influences from a wide range of artists, acts and style, through their music they aim to find common ground between what they are capable of where they are coming from.
About the song
Kuttay is a nazm penned by iconic leftist intellectual Faiz Ahmed Faiz. It is part of his first book, Naqsh-e-Faryadi, which was published in 1941.
In his book Poems by Faiz, British Marxist historian Victor Gordon Kiernan writes, “The opening couplet parodies that of a poem of Iqbal, The Prayer of Tariq–the Muslim conqueror of Spain. Iqbal’s warriors of the faith are endowed with zeal for religion (zauq-e-khudai), Faiz’s mongrels with zeal for cadging (zauq-e-gadai).” Like most of Faiz’s works, Kuttay too has a socially conscious element to it.
The song also includes two verses, highlighting the contrast between the two works of literature, from the aforementioned Iqbal poem.
While the composition and tabla playing keep the sound very Eastern, the arrangement on the whole leans towards a Western influence.
“We always complain about how our industry today has nothing to offer other than commissioned, formula music. Hence with our music we have tried to keep things simple and organic that will surely click with the listeners,” says Ahsun Tariq.
“Given Faiz’s own popularity, Kuttay is a famous work of his that has in the past been rendered by numerous artists. While the lyrics sound angry and distressed, we have experimented with our treatment of the poem,” says Shane Anthony.
“Kuttay had been in the works for several months. Due to a lack of resources and seeing the state of the industry, we were earlier not too keen on recording. However, with the arrival of new music platforms, we brought together whatever resources we had (read: no money) and pieced the song together,” says Ali Raj.
“We actually have quite a few originals in the making. We have a lot of hopes with Kuttay,” says Mikhyle Anthony.