Not only was this an excellent display of the fresh talent
Aussie Hip-Hop has to offer; it was also a face-paint party! Oxford Art Factory
was full of people running around with butterflies, pikachus, musical notes,
and a bunch of other beautifully painted designs on their faces (most people
opted to chicken out of the whole face-paint thing though) clearly enjoying a
night of raw, home-grown rap.
Chance Waters, AKA Phatchance, was the reason this gig was put
together; the headliner eager to showcase not only his album "Inkstains", but
also some very underrated and deserving artists who all did a great job of showing the
crowd that Australian Hip-Hop will continue to grow, innovate, and eventually
get the recognition it deserves.
I arrived just in time to catch the Loose Cannons from
Hobart/Melbourne who were the least impressive act of the night; however, this
isn’t to say they weren’t any good. Their infectious hooks stood out as the
strength of this short set, whilst the typical Aussie rap beats and forgettable
lyrics did little to catch the attention of people who want something fresh in
the Aussie Hip-Hop scene.
Next up was Drakezilla with Elgen and Johnny Utah who
immediately displayed that freshness needed to grab my attention. With the
emcees complimenting each other well and gliding over some very nice beats with
perfect rhythm and timing, I was left wanting more from these guys.
The following act needed no introduction in the Aussie
Hip-Hop scene, although they received a nice one from band Saving Grace (which
includes a Cello!). Mind Over Matter rushed the stage, immediately satisfying fans with some newish material from
their "Free The Wolves" mixtape and then getting into their more established
material which the fans seemed very familiar with as they sang and jumped
along to this epic performance; the boys even rapped over a few Daft Punk
beats, much to my delight.
It was now time for the main course as Coptic Soldier,
singer Miriam Waks, and headliner Phatchance hit the stage getting straight to
business as they traded rhymes on some really impressive beats with Miriam
lending her terrific vocals. Props to Phatchance for giving his buddy Coptic
Soldier significant stage time to showcase his own tracks, however, if one was
here to hear Phatchance’s live interpretations of his tracks, they didn’t
really get their money’s worth. Fortunately, it seemed like the crowd weren’t
only here for Chance, but Aussie Hip-Hop in general, and in that case, the
entire gig was great value.
A stripped down version of Chance’s emotional "Build It Up", and new track "Infinite" which saw the rapper getting his "existentialism on" were
the definite highlights of the set; an awkward and barely audible rap over Jet’s "Are You Gonna Be My Girl" was a bit hit and miss; whilst an encore
freestyle over Incubus’ "Drive" was a nice surprise – followed by an on-stage
celebration by all the artists who participated in the gig. The purpose of this
gig seemed to be to create awareness of the talent and innovation that can be
found in the Indie Australian Hip-Hop scene, and it did just that. Props to
Phatchance for turning his national album tour into a platform for fresh talent
to show that they all have what it takes to be the next big thing in Aussie