Can you rock?


Maha Mussadaq May 12, 2010

ISLAMABAD: Returning to Islamabad after two years, “Can You Rock season two” concluded this Saturday amid crazed fans, flickering lights, and earsplitting loud music.

Five bands from Islamabad—Drockracy, Soch, Mehrang, Disbelief and Atrox— competed in the event that was held at the auditorium of the National Library. The jam-packed hall reverberated with cheering shouting for their favourite performers.

“I can’t make up my mind [about my favourite band]. The show gets better with each performance,” a very excited Lallahrukh Dar told The Express Tribune.

The concert kicked off with Jibran Nawaz performing Atif Aslam’s Dharkay Jia and Tu Jane Na on his acoustic guitar. Drockracy followed with Ahmad Mehdi on vocals, Hanzai Shoaib on bass, Musa Javed on guitar and Ali Tahir on the drums. While their tune and rhythm was spot on, Mehdi failed to capture the essence of Strings’ Anjanay and Pink Floyd’s Comfortably Numb with his performance.

Then came Atrox, with their renditions of Metallica’s Enter Sad Man, Noori’s Nishaan and an original song, Ghulam. While Atrox’s performance lacked the traditional energy associated with rock performances, the band managed to sound refined and well-tuned.

The pressure was back on the remaining bands. The last three bands, Soch, Mehrang and Disbelief managed to build up on the momentum generated by Atrox and gave some memorable performances.

Disbelief’s original song, Aj Phir and their rendition of Guns N’ Roses’ Sweet Child of Mine, according to the judges, outdid the other performances at the concert. Atrox came in second and Mehrang ended up grabbing the third spot.

Zijah Fazli, a judge and a guitarist himself, when asked said he was looking for “shock value” in the performances. “We judged them on creativity, accuracy and technical skills. Audience impact and engagement was also a major influence in our decision,” he added.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 10, 2010.

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