Thursday, April 11, 2013 4 Comments
Let me preface this story by saying, I love Australian hip hop. Nah mate, I mean, I fuckin love Aussie hip hop! For the most part, hip hop is not my musical genre of choice. I find the American origins of this genre overly aggressive and generally derogatory in nature… neither element of which I equate with listening pleasure. In contrast, the Australian stylings are playful, full of tongue-in-cheek antics, and surprisingly, emotional sentimentality. Rarely egotistical, the feisty MCs could just as easily be one of your mates having a beer and talking shit at the pub on a Friday arvo, which only adds to the appeal of their music. The tonality is undeniably ocker, as are the themes, which regularly include checking out chicks, drinking, taking the piss out of others and kickin back, partying or avoiding work. And whilst these elements are evident in almost all modern Australian hip hop music, it is the individual music styles of the current performers that continues to impress me; reflecting influences as diverse as Latin, classical, rock, pop and soul.
Whilst the history of Australian hip hop can be dated back to the 80’s, it was the 90’s where it developed its own true local flavour and not til the 2000s where it emerged as a dominant force within the Oz music industry. In 2004, the ARIAs recognised the growth in interest in the genre and introduced a new category to their annual awards- Best Urban Release. Koolism took out the award in the inaugural year, and since then, industry heavyweights Hilltop Hoods have taken home the pointy prize a massive 4 times. Other recipients include Drapht, M-Phazes and Bliss n Eso.
Australian hip hop has gone from strength to strength over recent years, and deservedly so, with a slew of talented groups and MCs enjoying commercial success. The playlist below features some of my favourite tunes from these bands. So crack a beer, kick back and enjoy… after all, it’s almost Friday afternoon… isn’t it?!
How about you? Do you have any favourite Aussie hip hop artists or songs? Let me know by commenting below.