The Pakistani pop band consisting of Faisal and Bilal Maqsood was in the city this weekend to perform. On behalf of the dynamic duo, Faisal spoke to CS about love for club concerts, independent music and Bollywood:
Up, close and personal
It isn’t that I don’t like open-air concerts but I prefer closed-club concerts for the sheer energy they facilitate and the proximity to audience. The positive energy in the crowd uplifts our performance. Even though a club has limited audience, the closeness to fans is amazing. It gets the best out of us. It feels like we are performing for our own family and friends. Open-air concerts are also fun because the scope to reach the mass is bigger but close and cozy is our thing.
When we started performing, we were crystal clear that we wanted to sing for our audience. Also this makes us different from the rest of the western bands. The fact that we sing in Hindi and Urdu with Western music in it is the reason people love us. When our fans say that they can actually connect to our music and can see themselves in a song is a big compliment. This amalgamation of Eastern melody and lyrics with Western music comes to us very naturally now. Even now when we meet upcoming underground bands in India, we tell them that the key to success is audience connect.
Music in Bollywood has gone through a lot of change in recent times. In fact in the last five years Bollywood has completely taken over independent music by incorporating pop in films. This change has in turn affected the independent pop industry. It is a good thing since it has a bigger reach but at the end of day, that song is only limited to a film or an actor. Even though it has more visibility, it doesn’t give a sense of freedom and individuality. The film song is filmed on a particular actor and hence it is difficult for anyone and everyone to associate with it. Bollywood has taken over in that sense.
With so many upcoming bands performing live gigs in clubs I am sure that the scenario will change very soon. One of the main reasons independent music has slowed down is because of no support from the music label companies. Earlier the only way to listen to an album song was to own a cassette or a CD. With the advent of internet, access to information has become easy which has led to a decrease in the sales of albums. But this same internet has made it easy to find the exact popularity of the song along with apt audience reactions. The internet is the future of entertainment industry and companies are finding ways to give justice to the artists’ efforts. We are really looking forward to this.