The long wait was over. After touring through the US, Canada and Australia, the 40-year celebration of Miles culminated where it all began – right here in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
On Tuesday, at the International Convention City Bashundhara Hall 3, Miles were pumped up to give their fans the best closing to this momentous chapter not only of their lives, but also the fans.
The stage was set and the sound check was on full swing. Each of the opening acts saw them fine tuning their instruments as much as possible. Five bands were chosen to open for Miles. A tribute to the legends by the legends. They gave the audience the best they could, and almost gave Miles a run for their money. Opening with Shanti Chai, Vikings already set the bar high reeling in the audience.
Following them was Warfaze – the quintessential band of Bangladesh's music scene. Covering Shesh Thikana, they got the rowdy crowd all exited. Souls and Dalchhut also took turn in upping the heat with Gunjon and Jadu, respectively. Jadu is the Bangla version of the popular song Magic from Soul's second album Prottasha (1993) and worked magic after all these years.
Feedback, the last act of the legends, came on stage to perform Bhalobasha Na. All five bands could not stop themselves from saying a few words for the band that redefined the music scene in Bangladesh, accompanied with inside jokes expressing their admiration for Miles. All five bands poured their heart and soul into their performances, setting up the fans for the evening's main event – Miles, the group that has completed 40 years in the arena.
In between each performance, renowned actor and model, Azra Mahmood gave the fans titbits about the bands journey over the years. Die-hard fans, and collaborators, lyricists and song writers who have been with the band for 40 years came up on stage to share their experience of how it was to be part of Miles' everlasting journey. It was heart-warming, to say the least.
Then finally, it happened. The moment all the fans were waiting for. Miles took to the stage. They opened with Pahari Meye, setting the fans on a frenzy. Fans wanted to get the best out of the occasion and get as close to the idols as they could.
Mixing pop, rock, folk, and acoustic genres together, the band simply set the stage on fire. Covering music from their first albums, picking the likes of Prothom Premer Moto, Kotokal Khujbo Tomay, Priotoma Meye, to their last, Miles knew what they were doing, as if they took charge of the stage and beyond.
The much awaited segment, Sing with Miles, was possibly the most memroable performance ever. Three young Gen Z kids came up on stage and, along with the musical heavyweights and genius lyricists, these three performed Neela, the bands most popular song. The audience too chimed in along and the whole auditorium was reverberating with the spirit of the song.
And what would a band be without their gods? Miles paid a wonderful tribute to Pink Floyd by covering Time and the bands collective favourite, Eagles, by coming up with a soulful rendition of Hotel California. Truth be told, these bands are not just Miles' favourite, but also of every fan who were present there.
Miles did not forget where they came from and the struggles the country is facing. For a brief minute or two in between them starting their unplugged session they auctioned the lead guitarist's favourite guitar, hand-signed by all members of the band to a lucky winner and donated part of the fund to the underprivileged children though JAAGO Foundation. They were giving back.
In the unplugged session they performed songs like Rimjhim Rimjhim Brishti and She Koin Dorodiya. Followed by the acoustic session, they brought the frenzy back with Jala Jala!
The best part of the show was still to come. They signed out with Firiye Dao but not just like that. They got all the bands who opened for them to come up on stage and the weight of the bands (not literally though) could have cracked the platform they were standing on. All the bands were their – giants of the Bangladesh's music industry – singing their hearts out, along with the fans. There could not have been a more fitting end to the decade.
And with that, Miles bid adieu, promising fans that they will never go out of style. They did not forget to mention that the fans were the driving force behind their success and will continue to be their guiding light, and that without the fans they would be nothing.
So their 40th anniversary celebration was a tribute to the fans who have loved them and stood by them through thick and thin and will be with them till the end of time, to the generations that followed, Miles will be forever the legends of Bangladesh.