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Putting A Sense Of Humour Into Hip-hop

Putting A Sense Of Humour Into Hip-hop

Who: Upshot, Nameless Crew, Hyjak and Torcha with DJ Bonez
What: Mindstate
Where: Newcastle Leagues Club
When: Saturday November 13, 2004

IT has been a golden year for the Australian hip-hop industry.

A growing acceptance of the genre has seen names such as HILLTOP HOODS, DOWNSYDE and THE HERD become staple artists on the tour circuit, including major festivals such as HOMEBAKE and SPLENDOUR IN THE GRASS. Newcastle continues to be a strong supporter of homegrown hip-hop, particularly this year with THE BAND ROOM'S popular MINDSTATE shows.

Dubbed ``a celebration of Australian hip-hop'', the gigs have not only nurtured artists from around the country but also Newcastle's talent.

Mindstate returns this weekend to NEWCASTLE LEAGUES CLUB bringing UPSHOT, and Newcastle's own NAMELESS CREW to the stage, with headliners HYJAK AND TORCHA with DJ BONEZ. MCs Hyjak and Torcha realised a long-time dream this year when they released the debut album Drastik Measures. The pair worked in a deli to fund the recording. While it has earned them attention on a national scale, Hyjak said he was mostly driven by a love of music.

``It's more accepted in Australia if you do it with a band, hip-hop outfits with live guitars and stuff like that,'' Hyjak said.

``Australia is pretty much a rock country, so if the audience sees some live drums or guitars being played over the beats then they accept it a bit more.

``At the moment, I don't know anyone who just does hip-hop and lives well off it. I'm just doing hip-hop but I wouldn't say I'm doing well.'' Although Hyjak and Torcha don't share the live aspect adopted by many Australian hip-hop acts, they do share the same sense of humour.

``If I were to get evicted from my house, I'd write a rhyme about that and talk about going to get a home loan and they'd give me a cardboard box in a parking lot, or something like that,'' Hyjak said.

Catch Mindstate on Saturday from 8.30pm. Tickets cost $15 and are available at the club, PDMS, RAMJET or THREESIXTYSOUNDS.

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