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Hilltop Hoods Friday 18th August: Melbourne VIC - Festival Hall

Author: Erica Dobson
Monday, August 21, 2006
I had been looking forward to seeing the Hilltop Hoods for awhile now. I enjoyed their last two albums, and after just missing out on tickets to their last Melbourne show, I was excited to be making my way down to Festival Hall for the much awaited "Stopping All Stations" show.

The Hilltop Hoods definitely know how to get the energy levels up as we were treated with the best of the old and new that the Hoods have put together.

Firstly, I must admit that I think Festival Hall has had its day as a good music venue: it is not the ideal venue that it once was. My dad raves about how Festival Hall was where he saw all the big names in the 70s; that it was Melbourne's only big concert venue; that it was great. I, on the other hand, think it just does not cut it. The sound is not great, it is near-impossible to see the stage properly (speaking as a short person) in the GA section, unless you stand way at the back, and there is just something about the place that I don't like. It was a disappointment to find out that the Hoods were playing there, considering they have played at much better venues, like Metro earlier this year.

That said, it was great to see them do their thing live. They kicked off their set with a great accapella version of The Sentinel and proceeded to keep the crowd rocking throughout. The Hoods demonstrated why they are in the spotlight of the Aussie hip hop scene, skilfully delivering all the well-known classics to an eager crowd. Their set, which lasted for just over an hour, flew by.

I really liked the way DJ Debris mixed some interesting samples into the set, like Kanye West's Touch The Sky, and the Jackson Five's I Want You Back. It was great to hear MCs Suffa and Pressure rhyming over the top of the well-known tunes which was lots of fun to bop around to.

Some very well-timed pyrotechnics were thrown into the mix, as well as a crowd-teasing encore where the Hoods came out to perform the track I had been waiting to hear, The Hard Road. Suffa and Pressure are skilful MCs and it was great to watch them live. The combination of cool pyrotechnics, catchy lyrics, great tunes, and on-stage energy made the show well worth coming down to. Much respect to the Hoods.