Wednesday, August 13, 2014

“Nowadays record labels in Pakistan are just a name” - Inteha


Inteha talks about its second album Inteha-e-Rock and the decision to release it in India first

Lahore-based pop rock duo Inteha released its sophomore album Inteha-e-Rock in India a few months ago, and is now prepping to unveil the record in Pakistan. In a chat with Instep, the group – which comprises of brothers Naukhez Javed on vocals and Nausher Javed on guitars – discuss their new record, their solo efforts, and their plans for the coming months.

Instep: Your debut album Kehna Chahta Hoon was released in 2009. Why did you wait so long to come up with your second record? Don’t long delays have an adverse impact on a band’s career?
Naukhez Javed: We received many awards for Kehna Chahta Hoon, and then went on a tour to India, Thailand, Turkey, the US and UK. So we weren’t able to start the production of the second album till 2011. In the meantime, we built our own music production house, Chordiology Studio, in Lahore, and then recorded our album there. It took us a year and a half to finish the album.
Delays can have an adverse impact on a band’s career, but I believe we stayed in the limelight by doing different projects in the intervening time.

Instep: The record was, however, released in India a few months ago. Why did you choose to launch it internationally before releasing it in Pakistan?
Nausher Javed: In Pakistan, channels have been shut down. Radio stations mostly play Indian music. Concerts aren’t happening. Nowadays, record labels are just a name. We’ve been approached by various labels, but their work is always held up by political instabilities, or so they say.  So we decided to release our album in India and worldwide first. Last month, we were approached by a Pakistani label with an attractive package, so let’s see how that pans out.

Instep: The album was supposed to be released in Pakistan this summer, but now it has been postponed till the fall. Why?
Naukhez: Instability in the country, instabilities in media. There is no proper label that can make international standard packages. Name any label that is stable right now. Our band is not making stuff for Internet release; it should have the tag of a label – that’s the hallmark of a mature band.

Instep: How different has your experience been of working with Pakistani and Indian record labels?
Naukhez: Times Music showed interest in releasing our album in India and worldwide. Since it’s one of the big labels in India, we decided to join hands with them. The main positive aspect of working with an Indian label is that they are very professional. They are very aggressive in marketing and make sure that the artiste’s work reaches every nook and corner of India.
Nausher: The second best thing about this label is that they don’t interfere in production. Mostly bands have to change their music to get cheap success in films and ruin the “band” definition; a band should feel proud of their own sound, no matter what. We are a band, not solo artistes, and we are happy that our label in India loves our music.

Instep: Why have you included songs from Kehna Chahta Hoon on the Indian version of the new album?
Naukhez: Times Music India made that decision since they loved ‘Anjaana’ and some other old songs. They think that these are the pre-boosters for the album launch. But in Pakistan, we assure you that it is purely a brand new album with three additional new tracks – ‘Mahiwal’, ‘Rahoun Main’, and ‘Don’ – which are not on the Indian album. We know Pakistanis need more rock and we have to justify our album’s title: Inteha-e-Rock.

Instep: You are working on the video for ‘Ranjhna’ at the moment. Please tell us about it.
Naukhez: Yes, the video has been shot in Dubai and has been directed by Nausher himself. It’s currently in post-production and will air on all channels by mid-September. The theme of the video is drug addiction, which is a serious cause for concern among the youth these days.

Instep: Are you already working on the third Inteha album?
Nausher: Yes, we hope to finish it by the summer of 2015.

Instep: You guys are also pursuing solo projects. How are you balancing the band and your solo work?
Naukhez: My music sense is way different from Nausher’s, but when it merges, its makes  a third sound which is the sound of Inteha and we love that. We respect each other’s musical tastes, so the space is always there.
Nausher: And I am the producer of his solo stuff, so bhaag kar kahan jaey ga.

Instep: Many artistes strive to make it big across the border. What impact is this having on the material that is being produced by our musicians?
Naukhez: A musician’s bread and butter is their work, their music. So of course they will go across the border where they feel there is encouragement. Penetrating a market of over a billion people and being recognized is a huge sigh of relief for our artistes. But on a negative note, we are making music that is suitable for their market, so our originality is being replaced by their filmi style.

Instep: Do you guys have any other projects in the pipeline? What can your fans expect from you in the coming months?
Naukhez: Nausher is about to release his rendition of Reshma jee’s ‘Goriye’ soon as part of his Tribute to the Legends project. We’ll be on our album launch tour in India in August, and are also scheduled for a series of concerts in UK and US in October.

- By Sameen Amer

Instep Today, The News - 13th August, 2014 *

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