PSL TEAM ANTHEMS 2019 – HOT OR NOT?
Author: Mahrukh Husain
It’s that time of the year again! After immense anticipation, the much-awaited Pakistan Super League has returned for a fourth season with a promise to be bigger and better than ever before!
In an attempt to fire up cricket fans and get them excited for the series of matches to be held over the course of two months, PSL recently released the anthems of all six teams, Multan Sultans, Lahore Qalandars, Karachi Kings, Islamabad United, Quetta Gladiators and Peshawar Zalmi.
With the songs for each team having graced our television screens for quite some time now, we think it’s about time each was put under the spotlight and given the rundown. So without further ado, let’s jump in!
The latest entry in this season’s PSL tournament, Multan Sultans, has a lot riding on its ability to win; home to some of the greatest cricketers Pakistan has ever produced, including Inzamam-ul-Haq and Wasim Akram, Multan has a lot to prove now that it has finally been given a platform to perform.
The team’s anthem, titled ‘Waqt-e-Janoob’, perfectly captured the essence of Multani culture and its people. Sung by the legendary Ataullah Eesa Khelvi, the song touches on love, patriotism and brotherhood as the video takes the viewer on a journey through the city of Multan, its historical landmarks, its colorful bazaars, loving people and tantalizing foods. Through a string of images, the video weaves its way through Multan’s culture and its people’s love for cricket, ending with an appearance of Ataullah Eesa Khelvi himself as young men and women dance around him.
If there was honestly a way for Multani culture to be explained in a nutshell, this was it; the intricate manner in which the personality of the city was shown was detailed and informative yet not patronizing. All in all, a total treat!
The underdogs of the tournament owned by Pakistan’s sweetheart, Fawad Rana, after taking quite a beating in the previous season, seems to be coming back with a vengeance this time. Honestly, we’re just happy that we got to see Fawad Rana celebrate to his heart’s content!
Considering how colorful and full of life the culture and music of Lahore is known to be, it was a bit disappointing to see the team use their anthem from last year along with a medley of images from the previous PSL tournaments. I’m sure many Lahore Qalandar fans believe that Fawad Rana deserves better.
Still, the song itself has a catchy beat and is a perfect representation of the liveliness of Lahore’s people. In the end, Lahore Qalandar fans still have a pretty decent anthem to tap their feet to!
It seems that Quetta Gladiators can do no wrong; with top cricketers like Sarfaraz Ahmed, Kevin Pietersen, Shane Watson, Anwar Ali and Hasan Khan, the team has been able to maintain a spectacular winning streak from the start of the tournament and shows no signs of slowing down.
Their anthem is also winning hearts with its amazing rhythm and the soulful voices of both Aima Baig and Faakhir. The song evokes a feeling of immense drive and confidence, especially through shots of some of the players, their looks of determination inspiring a whole range of emotions within themselves! Combined with heartfelt images of fans and players celebrating their victory, the anthem is clearly a win for many!
After Call’s amazing rendition for Peshawar Zalmi the previous season, which consisted of a spectacular fusion of rock with traditional Peshawari music, many of us had high expectations from the team on how they planned to electrify their fans this year.
Alas, the newest anthem for the team leaves much to be desired. Although it features talented singers Zeek Afridi and Gul Panra (of Coke Studio fame), one can’t help but feel that the song is nothing more than just a cheap Pashto knock-off. While it does make sense to highlight the rich Peshawari culture through its music, there is also a need to be original and tasteful. The video itself does not have much to write home about; a slideshow of clips showing both singers in a studio along with players and fans on the field is all that we are treated to.
Seems like the Lahore Qalandars are not the only team guilty of reusing their anthem for this year’s PSL season; Islamabad United has also taken the easy way out by utilizing an amalgamation of images and clips of the team’s performance in the previous seasons against their previous year’s anthem, ‘Kitna Rona Dalega’.
Again, the video doesn’t offer much while the song, though likeable with a very catchy beat, seems to be lacking in the lyrics department. Seriously, they could’ve come up with something better than ‘Kitna Rona Daalega’.
Another team, another reused anthem – with a twist. While Lahore Qalandars and Islamabad United did the bare minimum by creating a slideshow of clips and images of their teams’ performances during the previous seasons, Karachi Kings, at the very least, made the effort to shoot a new video. A team known for its larger-than-life persona and backed by one of Pakistan’s biggest media houses, ARY, expectations were always high on how the team would present themselves this year; and of course, they did not disappoint. With some of the biggest entertainment and news celebrities Pakistan has to offer, including Faisal Qureshi, Waseem Badami, Fahad Mustafa and Iqrar-ul-Hasan, along with special appearances by singer Shehzad Roy (who lends his voice to the anthem) as well as the owner of Karachi Kings, the Swing ka Sultan himself, Wasim Akram, the video is glitz and glamor galore.
While the video does make an impact with its hip and happening image, it is also guilty of some very heavy brand advertisement. We’re all for keeping the sponsors happy but seriously, we could do without the extreme close-ups of Nurpur, TUC biscuit, Dairy Milk and Rooh Afza. Still, the song did have us up on our feet, so we’re not really complaining.
In our view, the winner this year were the Multan Sultans. The seamless manner in which it portrayed the rich culture and people of Multan while simultaneously integrating it with the passion for cricket was highly memorable. The Quetta Gladiators come a close second with their combination of a good beat, great music and inspiring images of their players speaking for itself. Karachi Kings occupies the third place, in our opinion, mainly due to its reliance on brand advertisements throughout its video.
As for the rest, the Lahore Qalandars, Islamabad United and Peshawar Zalmi, they will definitely have to up their game if they want to get maximum views online.