Kyrgyz Music Friday is a weekly feature in which I post a pop music video from an artist in Kyrgyzstan. It could be catchy, annoying, funny, insightful, brilliant, awful, or anything in between. It’s what’s playing on the radio, what all the cool kids are listening to these days. Kyrgyz Music Friday is not trying to appeal to your musical taste (which I’m sure is awesome), but simply gives you a glimpse into how pop music is done on this side of the world. Feel free to share your thoughts on this week’s video in the comment section!
I have been holding onto this video for a while now. You know how much we all love to hate those super processed pop groups that seem built on entirely unoriginal attempts by a production company to fit some supposed pop star mold?
Allow me to introduce you to (one of) Kyrgyzstan’s versions: The Dreamers and their song “Ырларым сага арналды”
Take some generic pop-rock with 70s/80s vibes (but not the good parts), add a drum machine (watching this video prompted a rant from Farrell, “Nobody in this country has ever put a microphone in front of real drum set and hit ‘record!'”), four strapping young men singing in Kyrgyz, and an anti-climactic video (that does not line up with the audio) and you get… instant success?
Confession time: high-school Kirstin probably would have loooooved this song. It’s going for the rock and roll thing while still being friendly and approachable. High school Kirstin eventually grew out of liking music that she deemed too mainstream and friendly, and nowadays looks for tunes that are a bit more edgy and creative.
I’ve come across at least one other band that seems to operate with the full support of a production team to craft its image, distribute its music, produce its tracks and videos, etc. I can’t tell if it’s working though. Having spoken to a few people about the music industry in Kyrgyzstan, the approach that the Dreamers are taking seems a bit forced, like they’re trying to adopt a shiny Western model in a place where it doesn’t quite fit.
That said… I’ve listened to the song three times now. Am I losing my edge? Is this actually a decent song?
(The answers are probably Yes and No)
Here’s a trick, listen to the song without watching the video and see if you like it better. Seriously, are they even playing their instruments?