By Fareeha Qay­oom

C oke Stu­dio sea­son 4, episode 1 aired this Sun­day at 6:00 PM fea­tur­ing Bilal Khan, Mizraab & Manan, Akhtar Chan­nal Zahri and Komal Rizvi, Jal and Sanam Marvi.

Coke Studio Season 4First of all, not all chan­nels started at 6:00 PM. We had to chan­nel surf quite a lot. In the end we picked Aaj TV to watch the show. Unfor­tu­nately there were loads of com­mer­cials and news updates in between the songs. This was excru­ci­at­ing. So we decided to chan­nel hop again after song num­ber three. We ended up at TV One; this was even more painful…they stretched the pro­gram to after 8:00 PM! Any­way, Here’s my take on episode one:

To Kia Hua by Bilal Khan – excel­lent, Kuch Hai by Mizraab (& Manan) – the vocals and lyrics needed more work by Mizraab’s lead singer, how­ever, Manan did a good job with his end of the song. I liked the Mid­dle East­ern instru­men­tal beat that was used at the start, mid­dle and end of the song in between Mizraab’s vocals. It was like two songs had been forcibly fused together with no uni­fy­ing theme to tie them together.

Dan­nah Pah Dan­nah by Akhtar Chan­nal Zahiri and Komal Rizvi – again, it was like two dis­tinctly dif­fer­ent songs had been forcibly fused together with­out cre­at­ing a bridge between them (It can be done suc­cess­fully though, remem­ber George Michael’s cover that fused Seal’s Killer with Papa was a rolling stone? Know what I mean?) Any­way, team­ing a mae­stro with an ama­teur never works either – Komal was the weak link in this song even though she tried her best; her voice and range didn’t suit this type of a song…I wish they had got Zahiri to team up with a strong singer, because this could have been a show stop­per of this episode. Oh well…

Ik Aar­zoo by Jal – well, they also started well…however, fus­ing Mast Qalan­dar and another sufi verse with their own com­po­si­tion didn’t really work. If they had stuck to their own song till the end, we might have got some­where. Sighra Aaween Saan­wal Yaar by Sanam Marvi was excel­lent and pre­dictable so no sur­prises there…

coke studio 2Over­all two out of five is not bad for episode one. I think Rohail Hayat and Co. is try­ing too hard though. Some­times sim­ple is best. Instead of try­ing to fuse east with west in vir­tu­ally every song or pop and rock with Sufi and folk, they can also exper­i­ment with vocal range, dif­fer­ent and con­trast­ing instru­ments and com­po­si­tions – know what I mean? It’s prob­a­bly why I liked Bilal Khan’s To Kia Hua the best with Sighra Aaween Saan­wal Yaar by Sanam Marvi a close sec­ond – both were sim­ple and effort­less.

Let’s see what fur­ther good­ies they have in store for us…Here’s look­ing at you kid! :D


July 26, 2011, Tues­day, Coke Stu­dio – sea­son 4 playlist



ver­all, it was a great sea­son. Rohail Hyatt and Co did some excel­lent work. There were some great col­lab­o­ra­tions and team work. For exam­ple, Ni Oothaan Waale, To Kia Hua, and Nindya Re  – these songs can be played any­where, any­time to all kinds of audi­ences and age groups, (loved the lyrics, the vocals, the instru­ments, the musi­cal score and arrange­ment).


I can espe­cially iden­tify with Oan­thaan Waale’s under­ly­ing theme – tim­ing is indeed every­thing in life. To Kia Hua – again, I can con­nect with “So what, so you lost out? Big deal…” and Nindya Re – song of the insom­ni­acs every­where – espe­cially, the lit­tle ones who refuse to go to sleep when you want them to! Yeah…universally appeal­ing and express­ing very human emotions….I even liked Pyaar Naal. The only beef I had with it was the Man­dolin. When you are talk­ing about hate being equal to love and indif­fer­ence being the real killer, the Man­dolin was kind of a jar­ring note in the mid­dle of it all… it sort of gave a dif­fer­ent vibe to the song which would have been appro­pri­ate in a light, roman­tic love song, not this seri­ously deep and dark expres­sion here…I also liked the piece of poetry recited by Esakhelvi at the end…Waqt Milla to sochain gay – (Trans­la­tion: will think about it in my spare time!) That’s why it still makes my playlist and there are eleven songs instead of ten here…anyway, enjoy! ;D


If you dis­agree with my song choices, you are wel­come to post your own. No hard feel­ings…





Ni Oothaan Waale


To Kia Hua


Nindiya Re


Sen­raan Ra Baairya


Mandh Waai


Nar Bait




Rang Laaga







Pyaar Naal






By the way, here’s the MP3 ver­sion of the top songs from Episode one and Two…

To Kia Hua by Bilal Khan — Episode one


Ni Oon­taan Waale by Attaullah Khan Esakhelvi — Episode Two

GD Star Rat­ing
GD Star Rat­ing
Coke Stu­dio – Sea­son 4: and the story con­tin­ues…, 9.0 out of 10 based on 1 rat­ing