The appeal for retro music is rooted in the flavours of nostalgia. Retro's music style and composition are imitative of the 1980s and 90s.
In the West, it has become a contemporary popular genre, but the fever of retro has not caught up in Bangladesh yet.
That is why Pritom Hasan wanted to pioneer the genre in the Bangladeshi music industry.
He fused Bangla lyrics with 80s' western retro sound in his latest song 'Morey Jak', which reached more than 1.5 million views in just under one month.
Pritom is best known for his popular party and wedding songs such as 'Kababer Haddi' and 'Local Bus'. But his latest song is a clear departure from that style.
And hence, it was high time The Business Standard sat with Pritom to unearth the story behind his electronic debut 'Morey Jak'.
"I was experimenting with psychedelic music and synthwave. These are the two micro-genres I was looking forward to working on for a long time," Pritom told us.
'Morey Jak' is a clear manifestation of that long-held wish. According to him, there is an empty space in our music industry that needs to be filled in.
He said, "You know, the entire world is shifting towards retro music. And I thought, 'Why not capitalise on this vacant space?'"
Following global footsteps, Pritom wanted to call the shots right now because he believes that everyone is eventually going to catch the retro fever.
"When it came to the theme, the entire plan was to make a song that creates a hypnotic impression on the audience. I wanted to create a very hallucinatory song. And in terms of the music video, we created a puzzle with many pieces that the audiences have to put together," Pritom described.
For Pritom, the song was experimental. He also fused disco drums, 80s' instruments and psychedelic voices. Moreover, this song is an anchor point for his future works.
"I would say the experiment of combining these three elements worked out really well. My experiment could open new windows of opportunity. In fact, it has already created an uproar," Pritom said.
On a personal level, the song was a challenge for Pritom. He always wanted to take his music to the international level. He had always craved to know how it looks and feels when Bangla lyrics are paired with western sound.
"I made the right choice. I'm going in the right direction," Pritom said, considering the response he received after the release of the song.
While Pritom's previously made songs like 'Kababer Haddi', 'Beianshab' or 'Local Bus' are loved because people can sing along and dance to these songs, his latest number is more for a niche audience.
And not all are accustomed to this genre. This is not a song that you play at any wedding ceremony and dance to.
In response to this, Pritom said, "Well, of course, many followers didn't like 'Morey Jak' as much because this is completely different from my previous work. Many couldn't accept the transition. They're saying that they miss the 'Pritom of Local Bus'."
"'Morey Jak' is lightyears ahead of its time. I think this is more like a song that I created for myself. I thought that if I set an example, a standard, it's going to be helpful for everyone; others too, especially for all the upcoming artistes who want to introduce new genres or new kinds of music to the industry," he opined.
We asked him the reason behind this transition. He answered, "My signature style is shifting from genre to genre. My 'Asho Mama Hey' was a fusion, 'Local Bus' was a fusion between Bangla folk and hip-hop, 'Beainshab' was a wedding song mixed with EDM [electronic dance music] and now 'Morey Jak' is psychedelic. My brand is doing different music."
"As I said, 'Morey Jak' is like an anchor point. The next song will take a completely different route," he added.
Last but not the least, there is good news for Pritom's fans. His next song is slated to be released by late December or early January, he informed us.
Is that song also experimental? We asked.
"I think you have to wait for it to understand that because there are many elements in the song but I can promise that the song is going to get people hooked," he answered.