A few words on some favorite songs in 2022
As part of my end of 2022 (rather, start of 2023) activities, I’m writing a few lines from selected songs in my Best of 2022 playlist.
Zahoor, Curly Ney
On rare occasions, a piece of art shakes up your conception of what should be normal. Lafzuna melds Pashto and RnB so gracefully that it is hard to imagine that this was not normal before. Zahoor’s recordings are novel and hopeful. Good reasons to watch out for him in 2023.
Turhan James, Maanu
Perhaps my favorite Maanu melody. The best Maanu songs utilize very subtle melodic differences between parts of the song. Maanu’s low-pitched vocal and clean tone provide a calm over a hopeful electronic beat.
This duo, perhaps singlehandedly, is keeping the art form of Qawwali relevant to young people.
Abdul Hannan, Rovalio
The beautiful simplicity of this song is its enduring appeal. Often, challenged by their peers, creative people can complicate their own work. This song proves that keeping audience primary is effective. Nothing more powerful to South Asia than simple melancholy.
On My Way
Young Desi was rapping before this current golden age of Pakistani hip hop. In 2022, he put out a full EP. Could he tap into that same voice in a more crowded space? The good news, he’s still got it.