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LIVE: SHIHAD – Perth, 16 Nov, 2018

| 19 November 2018 | Reply

LIVE: SHIHAD – Perth, 16 Nov, 2018
With Legs Electric
Rosemount Hotel, Perth, Western Australia
Reviewed by Karl Infirri
Photography by Michael Farnell

Friday night at The Rosemount Hotel was a sold out celebration of 30 years of iconic New Zealand rock band Shihad. Despite not seeing the band live for close to 15 years by this point, their reputation as a live act is enough that I knew what to expect.

The evening began with Perth rockers Legs Electric, who seem to get more of these support slots than not, and they delivered a solid set of tunes as per usual. Lead guitarist Elana Haynes yet again confirmed the fact she’s an absolute superstar, shredding it on stage from beginning to end with the gusto she always provides. Frontwoman Ama Quinsee was at her five star best as well – she can do no wrong in my eyes. Oozing charisma and energy throughout the set, she’s certainly going to be an icon in Aussie rock down the line. A star is on the rise, ladies and gentlemen – somebody give this woman the platform she deserves.

When I say this show was sold out I mean it was SOLD OUT. It began to actually feel like there were too many people in the room. The line for the bar… well, just forget about it. It was extremely uncomfortable for the whole night. I’ve never seen anything quite like it.

Shihad came out and it was ON. Electricity filled the air as they opened the show. It’d have been hard for them not to feel in the mood with such a wild and energetic crowd. They started going from newest to oldest, playing along a timeline heading backwards through their catalogue from the outset, though it didn’t seem to matter if it was old or new – the packed crowd of people were eating it up!

Comfort Me was certainly a highlight of the show. The intro is just so badass, and with the whole crowd singing along in unison, it was truly a beautiful moment of the proceedings.

The intensity multiplied vastly as they entered the Pacifier era next and played Run, tearing it up with such passion that the mob came unglued. Seriously. The room was so loud and steaming hot, it was absolute magic.

Even after 30 years lead singer Jon Toogood still hasn’t lost that spike in his gut to put on a cracking performance. He’s so well spoken on stage and he’s obviously a very intelligent and passionate bloke.

As a casual Shihad fan I can’t sit here and list off the name of every song, but they blitzed through the set like wildfire and the crowd’s enthusiasm only continued to grow. The night made me re-assess my ‘casual fan’ status.

The thing about Shihad is they have these rip roaring guitar riffs that just put an entire venue up in flames. One song after another, it’s an assault on your eyes, ears and senses.

As an added bonus, it is great to see the people take the show in correctly, living in the now as opposed to watching and recording on their phones. Good work tonight people – if only there was more of it.

The set ended as the people cheered immediately for more at a quarter past 12, with an encore shortly after.

The band was introduced one by one and we got rockin’ again. They played Cheap As to finish off the set with the fans surely satisfied with a superlative evening. I’ll tell you what, the second half of that song live is a ballbuster. Setting up a signing table after the show, the band met practically every fan in attendance and stayed on for another hour, signing and smiling for selfies happily.


Shihad proved that after plugging along for 30 years, they may be a little older and have shorter hair, but the pace and ferocity of their shows, and the affection their fans show them, and they return, won’t be letting up anytime soon.

Category: Live Reviews, Photo Galleries

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Editor, 100% ROCK MAGAZINE

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