Dominion Post review: Beautiful Machine – Shihad

May 12, 2008 at 9:04 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )


Here’s a review of the latest Shihad album ‘Beautiful Machine’ that I found. As you may or may not know, I wrote a review of this album a few weeks ago, and I loved it and still do. In fact I can’t wait to see them in June in Melbs. So yes, I agree with everything this guy says, and like I said, even if you’re a big of Shihad fan you might be a little weirded out by the style change on this album. But fear not, it is excellent and change is a good thing. Also it’s infectious, and I’m sure that after a few listens you’ll love it.

A.

Beautiful Machine – Shihad

By TOM CARDY – The Dominion Post | Friday, 02 May 2008

Taking their inspiration from dub, reggae, funk and soul, Hollie Smith, Fat Freddy’s Drop and The Black Seeds have been the biggest names to come out of Wellington’s diverse music scene in the 21st century.

But, as yet, none has had as big an impact overseas as rockers Shihad, especially as a live act … to think they’ve been together 20 years.

But Beautiful Machine isn’t just a testament to durability, when even other big-name 90s Wellington bands such as Fur Patrol have faded away – it’s proof that their muse has never abandoned them.

Some of Shihad’s hardcore followers will find the sound has a bit too much emphasis on the first part of the title rather than the latter.

Most of the dark, claustrophobic moments and the avalanche of sound, which Shihad are so good at, is kept to a minimum.

Instead, Shihad have produced their most accessible and best album since The General Electric. Yet it never feels like they’ve sacrificed creativity or integrity.

It also seems as if the band have brought in all their influences and celebrated them in equal doses.

The irresistible Chameleon equally balances Shihad’s metal bent, with echoes of glam and the punkier leanings of the New York Dolls. Count it Up, with its no-nonsense slash of guitars, pushes the punk, new wave component and is just as successful.

The gentle Waiting Round for God, one of their best songs, is also, almost disarmingly, their truest ballad.

And who would have believed how gifted the foursome were with pop melodies, especially on the likes of When You Coming Home?, Eliza and Vampires.

The ghosts of the much-documented problems Shihad have had to endure this decade have finally been vanquished.

Beautiful Machine is not only a beautiful – an adjective rarely associated with the band – album, but it will finally win over the small pockets of unbelievers who always thought Shihad put too much pedal to the metal.

http://www.shihad.com

http://www.azumuth.com

http://www.myspace.com/azumuthmusic

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