Article 20080218

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Date Published: 18 February 2008

Title: Perth Music :: Shihad Interview

Writen by: Justin Middleton

Original Link:


New Zealand rockers Shihad have been a bit quiet the past few years but in 2008 they are set to get back to their rockin’ best with the release of their 7th album, Beautiful Machine. They are a band that has done almost the impossible in surviving almost 20 years, 7 albums and even 2 different names. Now are they about to head off on an almost national tour of Australia to display what the Kiwi pubic are so proud of. Drummer, Tom Larkin from Shihad talked to Justin Middleton for this exclusive interview.

Click here to download the podcast of the entire interview. (11:14 - 1.3Mb)

I asked Tom to describe the creation of the album which has been nearly three years since the last Shihad album. “Essentially, after we did (Love Is The New Hate) we kinda had a practice room and started coming up with ideas related to the next one and one of the things a band does naturally is explore different territory as to wherever it is at the time. So we had a whole bunch of stuff and there was a kinda thread coming up that was really exciting us, that was noticeably more of light, more different. We basically started opening up on that, on those ideas and following that path and that turned into the better part of a year and a half and turned into Beautiful Machine” he explained.

The name Beautiful Machine is an interesting one and I asked Tom why it was chosen. “It is essentially about all those things we see as beautiful machines, be it humans or pieces of technology. Jon (Toogood) wrote it about a photograph Voyager took looking back on Earth. He looked at that photo and went ‘Wow what a beautiful machine’ and then it became a metaphor for all sorts of things.”

With the band being around for nearly 20 years and this being their 7th album release, it could be said that the band itself has turned somewhat into a beautiful machine. Tom added “Absolutely because there are a whole bunch of things that we do that are utterly instinctive and reactive off each others presence. At the same time, and I think this album is an indication of it, you have to refresh what you are doing and refresh how the machine works, so to speak, otherwise it becomes stagnant very quickly.”

Having just played the Auckland leg of the Big Day Out festival and heading out on a East Coast tour of Australia I was interested to see if Shihad treat the Big Day Out shows differently than their own shows. Tom answered “I think you have to treat it as another gig. It’s an easier gig to do because of the amount of care they take of you. But it’s a very important show to us so we always make sure we are across everything. To play to a large audience really requires a lot of experience playing to smaller audiences really.”

The first single from the album is “One Will Hear The Other” which has just started to come on the radio. Tom had this to say about the single “It was one of those tunes that we kept coming back to, it sounded like the name was catchy and it was really, really nice. But it was also a spirited track, it was kinda slamming at the same time. It was one of those tracks that came out and really changed the direction of the whole album and one of the tracks to really hang everything off….It was a really, really, really good track and it just kind of followed us around and we all just thought it was the clear first single and a lot of people around us thought the same thing.”

For more info visit The album Beautiful Machine is out April 2008, 1st single One Will Hear The Other is out now.

You can catch Shihad playing around the country at the following dates:

Thu Feb 21 - ANU Bar, Canberra, ACT

Fri Feb 22 - The Mona Vale Hotel, Mona Vale, NSW

Sat Feb 23 - Caringbah Bizzo’s, Caringbah, NSW

Tue Feb 26 - Orange Ex-Services Club, Orange, NSW

Wed Feb 27 - The Oxford, Bathurst, NSW

Thu Feb 28 - Capital Saloon, Wagga Wagga, NSW

Fri Feb 29 - Edge Hotel, Buronga, NSW

Sat Mar 1 - Pretoria Hotel, Mannum, SA

Sun Mar 2 - Fowlers Live, Adelaide, SA

Wed Mar 5 - Hallam Hotel, Hallam, VIC

Thu Mar 6 – Hotel Shoppingtown, Doncaster, VIC

Fri Mar 7 - 21st Century, Frankston, VIC

Sat Mar 8 - Ferntree Gully Hotel, Ferntree Gully, VIC

Sun Mar 9 - Westernport Hotel, San Remo, VIC

Mon Mar 10 – Push Over Festival, Abbotsford, VIC

Wed Mar 12 - The Hoey Moey, Coffs Harbour, NSW

Thu Mar 13 - Hotel Great Northern, Byron Bay, NSW

Fri Mar 14 - The Zoo, Brisbane, QLD

Sat Mar 15 - Coolangatta Hotel, Gold Coast, QLD

Sun Mar 16 - Sands Tavern, Maroochydore, QLD

This entry was posted on Monday, February 18th, 2008 at 5:52 pm and is filed under Album Releases, Touring, Interviews