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Shihad

Bio

Rock'n'roll can get you into some hairy situations over 20 years. Most bands donít make it half that far. They're silenced by the toll of the road, the vagaries of fashion, personal differences, lost ideals or an empty tank of inspiration.

Then there's Shihad. What doesn't kill them only amps them up, makes them louder, clearer, more united and determined to write THE song that will make the world raise its arms and roar in a single note of perfect harmony.

Beautiful Machine is the seventh studio album from New Zealand's premier road warriors. Months before release, it had 45,000 Big Day Out punters bouncing from stage to stalls in Auckland, where its heart-stopping first single, "One Will Hear The Other", has put their past airplay in the shade.

"We're all quietly confident this is the most focused record since The General Electric," says singer Jon Toogood, referring to the band's landmark rock radio arrival of '99.

"The feeling in the band is way more positive after the last few years of touring 'cause it had been so cathartic. It was like, right, I wanna have fun with melody again. I wanna have fun with grooves. I wanna write great songs that really connect and move people."

Beautiful Machine is loaded with them, from the exhilarating uplift of "One Will Hear The Other" to the atmospheric harmony of "Hard to Please"; from the glam rock thump of "Rule The World" to the heartbreaking tenderness of "Waiting Around For God".

"We knew we wanted to do something different. That's the common drive amongst the band. Never repeat yourself. If you can manage that after 20 years then you're really onto something," Jon says.

Incredibly, the band's chemistry has never sounded more potent. Tom Larkin again proves himself one of the finest rock drummers of his generation. Jon's singing has never been more moving, Phil Knight's guitar counterpoints never more lyrical and Karl Kippenberger's melodic bass work brought a new dimension to the writing process, says Jon.

"Phil would come in with a loop that sounded like an old Pink Floyd record, or something might have sounded like New Order when it was on my laptop, but once you get Tom playing drums and Karl playing bass, it sounds like Shihad. Just from a different angle."

The angles have all changed since the "big, heavy wall of angst" of Shihad's 2005 album, Love Is The New Hate. Instead of that record's fast and furious construction, Beautiful Machine was crafted with months of attention to detail, from laptop keyboard squiggles to painstaking refinement in Tom's new studio in Melbourne.

"Having all our gear permanently set up and ready to record meant we weren't afraid to try anything different," Jon says. "We had the luxury of time. It took about a year of experimentation, then the doors just suddenly opened to a whole new way of writing."

The keyboard dalliance is not new. Loops and samples wove through Killjoy in '95, even Churn in '93, the band's allegedly "industrial" debut. But Beautiful Machine reaches back to the more classic textures of the Prophet and Moog keyboards of decades past.

They were blended with Shihad's trademark full-tilt electric attack with the indispensable aid of engineers Scott Horscroft (Silverchair, The Sleepy Jackson, The Panics) and their old colleague Magoo (Oils, Regurgitator, Powderfinger) in the demo stages; and Matt Lovell (Eskimo Joe, Grinspoon, Something For Kate) for the album proper.

For the sonic piece de resistance, Shihad realised a teenage fantasy when UK indie maestro Alan Moulder mixed the album. "My Bloody Valentine and Ride were a couple of our earliest reference points as a band," says Jon. Moulder's more recent work with Nine Inch Nails and The Killers sealed the deal.

The result is an album of rare power and cohesion, both in sound and subject matter. The title, Beautiful Machine, leapt into Jon's head when he saw footage from the Voyager II satellite, but like everything else, it was subtly transformed when it got to the band room.

"Originally I thought it was about the satellite giving us a chance to look back at who we are. But when I mentioned Beautiful Machine to the band they said, 'You mean humans?' Well, yeah, and the planet as well! I mean, it's all pretty amazing, don't you think?" he laughs.

"A lot of itís dealing with communication and lack of communication, and how that basically stops things growing. It can apply to problems I have in my personal relationships and problems on a world scale. There are dark moments, but overall it's a real return to the Shihad uplifting, anthemic thing.

"What I'm really pleased with is that we've managed to find a new way around music," he says. "So what we do now is keep our heads down, learn to play the songs really well, then go out and do what we do. Whatever happens then, happens. But like I said, we're quietly confident that it's a f---ing great record!"

Band Members:
Tom Larkin (drums)
Jon Toogood (guitar, vocals)
Karl Kippenberger (bass)
Phil Knight (guitar)

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Comments (Newest First)

Shade
muzic.net.nz Admin

Joined: 17/07/02
Posts: 4752
Location: Manawatu
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Shihad's new album for 2008
Posted: Sun Feb 17, 2008 2:18 pm
Shihad's new album 'Beautiful Machine' is set to be released on 21 April 2008.
 

Shade
muzic.net.nz Admin

Joined: 17/07/02
Posts: 4752
Location: Manawatu
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Shihad announce new single 'One Will Hear The Other'
Posted: Thu Dec 6, 2007 3:20 pm
Thereís been a distant thunder, a growing storm, whispers and hearsay, secret comings and goings, and rumour aplenty. But yes all can now be confirmed. SHIHAD are releasing a brand new album in 2008 Ė Beautiful Machine.

Recorded in Melbourne and mixed in London by Alan Moulder (My Bloody Valentine, NIN, Smashing Pumpkins, Jesus And Mary Chain) the first single ĎOne Will Hear The Otherí will be on New Zealand airwaves in early December.

In true the SHIHAD fashion of each album being a reaction to itís predecessor, Beautiful Machine kicks against the proto Rock styling of Love Is The New Hate and mines similar ground to that explored on the bandís self-titled album (known to many as the Fish album). Lead single, One Will Hear The Other heralds a return to more melodic compositions and suggest that SHIHAD are set to deliver one of their greatest records.

To listen to the debut airing this week of One Will Hear The Other stay tuned to the bandís MySpace page: www.myspace.com/shihad

In other news, SHIHAD are confirmed to deliver their customary set of blistering rock n roll in their now infamous sunset spot at the Auckland Big Day Out.

In advance of their BDO appearance, SHIHAD will play two special warm up shows in small clubs in Wellington and Auckland. Details and advance ticketing information about these shows will also be released via the bandís MySpace site this week.

So make sure you log on: www.myspace.com/shihad

One Will Hear The Other from the album Beautiful Machine coming in 2008.
 

Get_Bourne

Joined: 30/09/05
Posts: 4
Location: Wellington
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Confused
Posted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 3:40 am
When I write the Artist Name For Pacifier Album in iTunes Now should I write

- Shihad
- Shihad(Pacifier)
- Pacifier(Shihad)
or
- Pacifier

??????????
 

Nick Knack

Joined: 13/02/06
Posts: 83
Location: Auckland
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SHIHAD ROCKS!!!!
Posted: Tue Feb 14, 2006 12:58 pm
Just write to this post if you agree with me..
 

muzz

Joined: 13/04/04
Posts: 31
Location: Canterbury
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RE: shihad alive
Posted: Mon Dec 13, 2004 9:44 pm
im not that keen on the vid...but i haven't like dimmer's vids either
fully liking the song tho. i like it how its all hard out guitar riffs in the verse and then slowed down chorus but i know some people dont dig it.
sounds all good for the new album tho
and yes i agree shihad are a wicked band
 

bonnie

Joined: 24/07/04
Posts: 486
Location: Taranaki
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shihad alive
Posted: Mon Dec 13, 2004 5:29 pm
what do you think of the video for it

i think it is fully ok
i like it just in the song it's self
starts of bloody good then turns to AAAALLLIIIIVVVEEE
and then good again

i dunno i just dunno awsome band tho
 

Shade
muzic.net.nz Admin

Joined: 17/07/02
Posts: 4752
Location: Manawatu
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Shihad Enter Studio in Vancouver to Record Album #6
Posted: Thu Sep 23, 2004 8:46 pm


September 22nd is the beginning of another chapter in the career of heavy rockers Shihad. The group, many tout as one of the best live bands around, have again employed the services of GGGath Richardson (Rage Against The Machine, Red Hot Chili Peppers) to produce their new album titled "Love Is The New Hate" beginning tracking this week.

Shihad last worked with GGGarth on their seminal album "The General Electric". In between the two projects GGGarth has built a world class studio facility at Gibsons on the West Coast of Canada and it's there that Shihad will bunker down to lay down the fattest rock groves imaginable.

The writing process for this record began late last year and has included two intensive writing sessions at Ngamatea, a deer reserve in the Central North Island of New Zealand, in addition to many sessions in both Wellington and Melbourne. The fruits of the writing are 40+ tunes with which they will cull to around 11 or 12 for the final record.

The first single off "Love Is The New Hate" is expected at radio before the end of the year, with the album out in early 2005.
 

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