Chief Sab - Sajjad Ali (1995)

Judging Sajjad Ali's latest magnum opus, "Chief Sab", against his earlier music enterprise, "Babia-93" would be doing great injustice to the former. "Babia-93", though a mega-success, owed it's instant fame stance due to it's built in potential for success. "Chief Sab" on the other hand is an original endeavour with its fabric woven out of pure, unadultered thread. And so, the credit for it's catapult to dizzying heights of success may be claimed by none other but its creator, to the last scale.

The opening song "Chief Sab" is a rap of sorts with a lively beat and optly done lyrics. You immediately start lip-synching. Totally new to this style, Sajjad Ali has made it work for him with his well-trained vocals. The next in line composition, "Mahiwal" is an equally hummable number. The organ work done is simply exhilarating. With garnishings of a slight Punjabi tone, the number is mildly soul stuff. "Bulbul" is the song you will re-rewind due to it's crisp, snappy, South American beat -- done with Spanish guitars, congos, percussions and synchronors -- no wonder it is one of the favorites in the album. "Yaad" and "Naraz" reflect on Sajjad Ali's nostalgic themes that have been his ticket to fame. They are the campy pop, romantic ballads, injected with blues. For variation, the album supports two english numbers: "Time To Go" and "I'm Back" with the latter being a fusion of pop and raag's. With well pumped up lyrics and instrumentals, the songs give a fresh breeze to "Chief Sab".

Come side B and "Rikshay" awaits you, though it's not a rackety number as the name might suggest. Some of the other catchy upbeat tracks on this side are "Ali Ali" and "Tum".

The album is doing a wonderful take on the local music scene. And with the bandwagon already over-loaded with all sorts of bathroom singers, Sajjad Ali's "Chief Sab" is a welcome change.

Dr. Qadeer Ahsan
TV Times, Pakistan