Generously giving their fans an inside look into the band’s humbling highs and personal lows, Shihad’s new documentary, Beautiful Machine, traces the ebb and flow of one of New Zealand’s greatest rock exports.

Complete with archived footage of onstage performances and offstage banter, the rockumentary is a glimpse into Shihad’s early beginnings and what drove them to pursue uncharted American territory.

The focus of the band can be seen as the ultimate driving force that eventually led them to take on the music industry.

What fans will be able to appreciate most is the candid opinions of band members, Jon Toogood, Tom Larkin, Phil Knight and Karl Kippenberger, who chronologically track the rise and fall of Shihad and also their personal struggles.

With a career spanning over 20 years, Shihad are no stranger to suffering and the film deals with it all.

From the death of former band manager Gerald Dwyer to Phil Knight’s alcohol addiction, the hard stories are never far removed from a good anecdote, as the foursome uses humour to downplay previous struggles.

What does get a substantial slot in the story telling of Shihad is that name change and the toll of trying to make it in America post 9/11.

Pacifier aka Shihad, bore a lot of criticism homegrown fans who wondered what led the once steadfast band to change their name to none other than the American term for ‘dummy’.

Beautiful Machine digs the dirt on the Wellington boys who dreamed big and achieved something great.

More concentrated on the band dynamic than anything else, the rockumentary is a must-see for die-hard fans and those who just want to know the story behind the band that almost was.

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