Cover Story

Bahrain blooms

February 22 - February 28 ,2023
Gulf Weekly Bahrain blooms
Gulf Weekly Bahrain blooms
Gulf Weekly Bahrain blooms
Gulf Weekly Bahrain blooms
Gulf Weekly Bahrain blooms

Gulf Weekly Mai Al Khatib-Camille
By Mai Al Khatib-Camille

Groove is in the heart of one of Bahrain’s bands as the Middle Eastern music scene has spoken and nominated the seven-strong funky and psychedelic group for two categories of a mega music award in the UAE.

Musivv is a platform, in a digital magazine format, that discovers and develops independent musical artists in the UAE and the Middle East, and their Musivv Awards has honoured more than 50 independent creatives since its inception in 2019.

This year marks its third edition and the kingdom’s Hotboxgroove is thrilled to have received two nominations— for ‘Band of the Year’ and ‘Debut Recording Artist of the Year’ for their song Midnight Blooms, which was their first single release in October last year.

“Indeed it’s a great honour to be nominated and recognised for all our hard work and to represent Bahrain in the region,” said an elated Khalil Qureshi, one of the band leaders from Riffa, who is currently serving in the US Navy as operations lead for entertainment on the base in Bahrain. The rhythm and lead guitarist is also involved in three other music projects – Posthypnotik, Native Tourists and Habitat.

Khalil came across the news through the platform’s social media account when nominees were announced in different categories. He immediately shared it with the rest of the crew that includes Ryan John (drums), Karl Roderick (rhythm and lead guitar), Joshua Pandit (vocalist and synth), Szabi Nigo (trumpet), Rod Collins (saxophone) and Ryan James (bass guitar).

“We wish all the best to the artists who have been nominated,” he added. “Music is a beautiful thing and we are fortunate that we have the ability to write songs and share it with the masses.”

The group, known for fusing elements from jazz, blues, funk and psychedelic genres to create a whole vibe, is thankful to Hani Taqi of Studio77 Bahrain, who is their recording and mix engineer for the song Midnight Blooms.

“These nominations are linked to how the song was captured in the recording,” explained Khalil. “We would also like to thank Musivv and Musivv awards and their team for recognising and nominating us in these two categories as well as putting a spotlight on the music coming out of Bahrain.”

The selection process for the awards begins with recommendations from various record labels in the region. A nominating body then reviews the recommendations and selects the nominees based on various criteria.

The final list of nominees is then submitted to an external jury, which consists of Grammy-level producers and music industry experts, to cast their votes. Musivv awards team members, contributors and correspondents around the world are also invited and votes are done through a secured link and submitted confidentially.

The ballots are then sent to HMA Auditing, an impartial third party commissioned to count and validate the votes. The results will be revealed during the live awarding ceremony on March 8 at the Theatre of Digital Arts (TODA) in the bustling Souk Madinat Jumeirah.

This year’s event, which is free of cost, will include performances by Emirati, regional and international singers. Those who would like to attend, in person or online, can register via and it will be streamed live from the same site.

Meanwhile, Hotboxgroove aims to end the year on a high note. “We are back in the studio at the end of March to record our next single Gut Bucket followed by Silhouette and then Indus,” said Khalil. “We plan to release these three songs by the end of this year.”

Follow @hotboxgroove on Instagram.

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