When we think of a Atif Aslam and Momina Mustehsan collaboration, we think of a vocal heavy love song over a softer beat and their latest song for Coke Studio Season 14, 'Sajan Das Na', is exactly that.
According to Coke Studio, the song is a "slow-jam" and narrates "what fame and relationships mean in our time". It shows two lovers arguing from their own perspective. Aslam's lyrics tell his lover that her need for fame pushed them apart but life has no meaning without her. The main chorus discusses how he wouldn't mind filling pages after pages discussing his feelings and thoughts about how he can't go on another day without her.
Mustehsan's perspective speaks of how there is a distance between her and lover and why it is an obligation to be so distant. She also sings about how living without her lover is not something she wants. She also questions the love he has for her. Both perspectives seem to say 'Sajan Das Na' which translates to lover tell me.
The song has been produced by Xulfi, written by Adnan Dhool and Mustehsan and composed by Xulfi, Abdullah Siddiqui, Dhool and Mustehsan.
The styling in the video is different from what we usually see in Pakistani music videos. We noticed some similarities between Aslam and Drake both in their way of dressing and the poses Aslam strikes in the music video.
Siddiqui took to Instagram to share the song and how it was "one of the toughest songs to crack".
"There had been multiple versions, none of which were what we were looking for. Then one night, at the end of a very hard day, at the end of a very hard week, I sat down in Xulfi's studio while he was out, and in a sudden flash of creativity made the whole instrumental track and several of the melodies," wrote the 'Prosaic' singer.
"Xulfi came home at some point, exhausted. I’ll never forget how his energy changed when he heard the track; he literally jumped up and down and gave me a massive hug. We felt such joy and relief. It felt like we’d rediscovered our love for pop music after being in our heads for so long. Nothing too conceptual, just a solid, infectious, modern, pure pop song. And who better to sing a pure pop song than Atif Aslam and Momina Mustehsan," Siddiqui said.
Actor Ayesha Omar and host Anoushey Ashraf both commented under his post and expressed their excitement over the new song.
However, not everyone was happy with it. Many commented under Siddiqui's post and said they expected more.
Some questioned why the composer hadn't experimented more while others felt Young Stunners or Faris Shafi might have done justice to it.
On Twitter, one user said "Coke Studio could have and should have done better". They expected much more from the song, especially with superstars like Aslam and Mustehsan involved.
Another user felt the song was "meh", especially after 'Tu Jhoom' and 'Kana Yaari'. She loved the way Aslam looked in the video though!
Another user suggested that while she appreciates how Aslam likes to "experiment", Mustehsan's voice "doesn't compliment much with the overall vibe" and that Coke Studio should stick to introducing new talent more.
This user just simply labeled it a "dud".
Another wondered what the song would have sounded like if Punjabi-speaking singers had taken over. This point was a little confusing to us, because as far as we know, Aslam is Punjabi.
Some people felt that the song should be given another chance because it grows on you.
One user got Shamoon Ismail vibes from the song.
There is no debating that Aslam and Mustehsan are Pakistani superstars who are bursting with talent but a lot of fans felt let down with 'Sajan Das Na'. Many were hoping for something as good as or better than 'Tu Jhoom' and 'Kana Yaari'.
'Tu Jhoom' had the wow factor and highlighted Naseebo Lal and Abida Parveen's vocals while 'Kana Yaari' experimented (and succeeded) with the B-pop (Balochi pop).
Like fans on Twitter, we're hoping for some more experimentation in Coke Studio's upcoming songs, especially given its great artist line up.