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Album Review: Hilltop Hoods - Drinking From The Sun

12 April 2012 | 5:06 pm | Jake Dennis

There’s enough to keep ‘Hoods fans happy...

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Drinking From The Sun has already sold 70,000 (and counting) copies and, like their previous two albums, State Of The Art and The Hard Road, has reached number one on the Australian charts. But is it as good as their last albums?

The speed of their lyrical flow has increased; an effect perhaps even from such up-close exposure to the rapid-fire flow of Eminem, who they supported during his Australian tour last year. However, their lyrical content remains unchanged. “We won't let the vultures at the counter-culture,” they promise in the title track, another anthem for hip hop heads Australia-wide. Currently touring America, the Hoods will return to Australia in May for Groovin' The Moo, and this will no doubt strike a chord.

On their sixth studio release, MC's Pressure and Suffa and DJ Debris, who make up Australia's most successful hip hop crew, maintain the muscled production which distinguished their last record State Of The Art from earlier releases. Unfortunately, though, they abandon the unique jazz piano samples and epic conceptual efforts of songs like Fifty In Five, which made that 2009 double-platinum record stand out. Their overall sound, no longer ahead of or on par with Australian hip hop trends, lacks the musical variety of Melbourne rap crews like Diafrix, and the infectious optimism that made Perth rapper Drapht's Life Of Riley fresh. The album does however dish up a number of goodies, the standouts being the lead single I Love It, Speaking In Tongues (which features deep-voiced J-5 founder Chali 2NA) and Living In Bunkers with its catchy chorus by British rapper Lotek. There's enough to keep 'Hoods fans happy, but not enough to consider this classic Hilltops.