Hyderabadi duo blend sufism with hip hop music in new album

Hyderabad: One of finest hip hop groups from the city, Thugs Unit, which pioneered the Urdu hip-hop genre, on Friday launched its new album “Resurrection 040”. The artist duo from the band said that “the album will be released on global Music distribution platform Apple Music” as an exclusive preview.

The newly announced album ‘Resurrection 040’ soulfully blends eastern and western music producing a mystical confluence of Sufism and Hip Hop genres. The 12-track album features expressive lyrics presented in Urdu, English and also in Jamaican styles by versatile Hyderabad-based rappers Mudassir Ahmed and Syed Irshad (with stage names ‘Mo Boucher’ and ‘Irish Boi’ respectively). ‘Resurrection 040’ is the name of the album wherein ‘040’ is the Hyderabad’s telephone code.

The 12-tracked album features tracks named Rubaroo (face to face), Raahe Rast (Straight Path), Suroor e Ishq (Exhilaration of Love), Pardafash (Unmasked), Azmaish (Test), Atishbazi (Fireworks), Bossman, Bus’em (Bust Them), Hate Monger, Intro, Kun (Be) featuring Rebel of Khan Artists and Original Rajah (Original Ruler) – a musical ensemble portraying Sufism-inspired self-reflection, community evils and voice against power establishments. 

Music for the album is produced by seasoned Grammy-nominated and multi-platinum producers including Buck Wild, making the duo the first from Telangana (and perhaps from India) to work with US-based Grammy Nominated producers.

Thugs Unit inked a deal with Apple Music earlier this month. As part of the deal, the album will feature exclusively on Apple Music once it goes live on November 20 (Friday), following which it will be released on other music platforms after a fortnightly exclusive deal with Apple. “We are elated that Bobin James Editor & Artists Relations Lead at Apple Music personally listened to our music tracks and liked them enough to honour us by featuring on a platform so robust like Apple Music”, they said.

Their signature style of rapping began in Urdu in 2008, which was a time when hip-hop was only confined to English, and garnered them both critical appreciation and professional momentum. “We see hip-hop as a tool for spreading knowledge and shifting mind-sets. Essentially, hip hop is a genre for representing the voice of people, and we use it as a tool to voice against oppression in all forms. When we see something wrong in our community, we speak about it in our music,” they added.

Having started their musical journey in 2008, Mudassir and Irshad cascaded mixed tapes titled ‘The beginning (2008)’, ‘The Movement (2010)’ and ‘Poets Word (2012)’. In the quest to reflect purity of thoughts in music, Mudassir started off on a spiritual journey, and learned Sufism from a well-known Sufi saint, which reflects in their comeback album. Later in 2019, Mo and Irish united again to produce this album.

It is pertinent to mention that in 2006, Mudassir became the first emcee to introduce Jamaican Ragamuffin flavour to the Indian hip-hop scene through his reggae-inspired music making Hyderabad the birthplace of home-grown reggae. His song featuring Enkore has been awarded by Radio City Freedom Awards in 2013, while Mo Boucher’s poetry has been nominated for the RL Poetry Award 2014. Since then, Thugs unit has produced and recorded original soundtracks for various vernacular movies including the Hyderabadi film industry.

The new album will be available for streaming and purchase on all leading Music platforms including Spotify and Amazon among others. Earlier, a lyrical video from the album was previewed on this occasion.

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