Article 20080218 2

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Date Published: 18 February 2008

Title: Messenger Community News : Shihad won't be pacified

Writen by: Jeff Crawford

Original Link:


SEPTEMBER 11, 2001, impacted on New Zealand quartet Shihad more than it did on most bands. Shocked by the terrorist attacks, the band changed its name due to it being a twist on jihad (holy war) to Pacifier.

Two years and one Pacifier album later, appalled by the Bush administration's decision to invade Iraq, the band did an about face, renamed itself Shihad and delivered its most angry record, Love is the New Hate.

Frontman Jon Toogood says it's taken two years for Shihad to rediscover its momentum, during which the four friends wrote and recorded forthcoming album Beautiful Machine.

``We did that last album, Love is the New Hate, in Vancouver, which was all about getting the chip off our shoulders from being in America and changing our name and going through all that crazy malarky watching them invade Iraq and watching the powers of darkness take hold of the minds of America, living in the belly of the beast, Toogood says.

``It was a really dark record, but it was a really good, cathartic experience for me. We had to do it.

The singer says it's now ``a good time to be in this band, the culmination of more than a year of intense sessions in a Brunswick (Melbourne) studio.

``We just set up our gear and over a year-and-a-half wrote and recorded and experimented with different sounds and had a really great time.

``Five days a week we were writing and recording, not being afraid to fail, not being afraid to try different things, because no one was going to hear it unless we thought it was good. We were pretty much living the dream, really, until we got to a point where we had 15 songs out of 50 that we absolutely loved.

Toogood says the band - also featuring guitarist Phil Knight, bassist Karl Kippenberger and drummer Tom Larkin - was so focused on building Beautiful Machine that a milestone crept up without the band noticing.

``Someone told me last year that next year was going to be our 20th year and I had no idea. I have never been one to sit around looking back. Was last night's gig good? That's as far back as I look.

``That's why I haven't even noticed, 20 years have just flown by.

The first single from the album, One Will Hear the Other, is now available.

Shihad - Fowlers Live, Sunday, March 2. Licensed & all ages. Bookings: Venuetix and Moshtix.