Rohail Hyatt, producer of Coke Studio:
Eastern music relies on melodic nuances that touch certain notes or frequencies and these can cause a ‘clash’ if used with standard chords. Gal Sunn is a good example of such a melody. It touches so many ‘added’ notes that avoiding these potential ‘clashes’ became a bit like walking through a landmine. Therefore in retaining the spirit of eastern music, I have tried my best to stay clear of these and that’s why the song ‘sounds’ a certain way.
I wrote a little bit about the relationship between Indian classical and Western music in a piece about Kangna. The gist is that western instruments often rely on harmony – playing multiple notes together in a guitar or piano chord. For a vocal melody to sit well on a chord progression, the notes in the vocal melody and the chord progression need to all be part of a common larger scale. If the two are lazily put together the sound doesn’t quite add up. While Rohail is not alone in his sincerity to this effort, the magnitude of his work makes him an important figure in this regard.
Ali Pervez Mehdi’s performance on this recording, by which I mean both his vocals and how much fun he is having delivering them, is a joy to watch. One of Rohail’s signature Coke Studio moves is to add a replying narrative, often in the voice from another gender, to many love songs. Meesha plays that role here, and this performance is a solid addition to the Meesha canon.
Fun fact: Ali Pervez Mehdi is brother to Ahsan Pervez Mehdi who formerly performed as part of Siege, and can now be seen on Velo Sound Station, and collaborating with Ali Noor.