Jogi - Arid Zone (1996)

About the Arid Zone's second album, "Jogi", one can rightly say that the right thing is being done at the wrong time. What should have come out a couple of months back is coming out now. Well ..... better late than never they say.

The Arid Zone have been much different this time around. The title song of their second album, "Jogi", is a clear departure from their earlier album's songs like, "Laut Aao Na" the melancholic, slow number that became as hot among listeners as fast food; "Gadi Bhar Ke" the fast groovy number that slowly churned your tears for fears; and the scintillating jazz extravaganza "Tu Hai Jahan" et al.

In fact, "Jogi" is a sort of Eastern rock with mystical overtones like chanting of the mantras, and guitar distortions interlaced with Kalimba on the keyboards (played by Jawad of Collage fame!), and drums on the machine by Shareb. "Bhula Bhi De" is a bluesy, romantic number, more or less a second version of the earlier "Tu Hai Jahan", with sound drums. "Tum Jo Chaho" is a soft and romantic number (the guitar in this number seems to have an uncanny resemblance to the guitar in Chris Isaak's "Wicked Game"!). "Zara Man Ko Dekhna", an upbeat song with bass grooves is one of those rare numbers in which, for the first time, any Pakistani band has had the entire number done in dhol and tabla (played by Arshad Ali), which have been dissolved to give an effect of being played simultaneously. "Tu Jo Mere Paas" is a slow, enigmatic, sexy, gyrating, Arabic number, while "Tere Bina" can be noted for excellent poetry, touching and melancholic. "Choom Lo Aasman" is techno-pop, and those who have watched NTM's drama serial "French Toast" are already acquainted with this groovy number. "Chandni" (currently in the top slots of local charts) has congos and no drums with light guitar distortions and light percussions; another Arabic melody with excellent keyboarding by none other than John Saville, an excellent pianist and guitarist. "Dono Gum Thay", finally is an amalgam of the Eastern classical and pop, and a rather romantic number with the guitar playing Eastern notes.

TV Times, Pakistan