Video: Shihad Perform Think Your So Free Live @ York Street Studios for Sundae Sessions.
New Zealand’s loudest rockers Shihad are back and they’re angry. There’s no better way for them to be. Pissed off with Australia’s PM Tony Abbott, and New Zealand’s John Key and all the shit that is going on in the world today. They’ve taken that aggression and poured it into their 9th album FVEY (in case you were wondering, it is pronounced as ‘five eyes’).
They returned to record the album at York Street Studios where they recorded their first three albums (Devolve, Churn, Killjoy). Sadly, York Street Studio is no more, and Shihad recently performed the live set for Sundae Sessions as a final hoorah. They brought along their original UK producer Jaz Coleman (singer/keyboardist Killing Joke) to not only capture the energy of the new music, but to close the loop at York Street where they started.
Coleman produced Churn, which is where my love for this strange heavy band from New Zealand started. How can you not love the opening track Factory? However, it wasn’t until I first saw Shihad perform live at The Evelyn in Brunswick Street, Melbourne that I understood how goddamn awesome there were. That punchy sound they had on Churn was turned up to eleven* at their live shows.
I’ve seen them many a gig from big (Big Day Outs, St Kilda Festival, supporting Faith No More) to many a small venue across Melbourne. I’ve even bumped into bass player Karl Kippenberger at a QOTSA gig, met one of their old classmates on my front door step on the day I was wearing their t-shirt (bizzaro!), and spotted Jon Toogood submerging himself into a freezer at my local Woolworths supermarket!
The new material has some guts in the political messages, Toogood’s vocals are at times unrecognisable as Toogood as he seems to be channelling another time (80’s Killing Joke?), the riffs are catchy but not as in your face as you remember they can be. This will be a grower. I’m currently fond of The Big Lie, and Grey Area.
Shihad’s live performances always do their music better justice. So I suggest you watch the full set at Sundae Sessions (68 mins) to hear the boys play songs live from the new album, understand how the album was recorded and discuss their 25 year rein in the music industry.
Video: Shihad FVEY Studio Sneak Peak
FVEY is released today in New Zealand, and will be available in Australia from the 14 August 2014.
* Obligatory Spinal Tap reference.
Previously on Sampling Station:
- Shihad: Beautiful Machine Documentary
- Are Faith No More Working on New Music?
- Mike Patton Has The Widest Vocal Range In Modern Music*