Hilltop Hoods push themselves right outside their comfort zone on 'The Great Expanse'

The seminal hip hop trio just don't relent.

Now on their eighth studio record, Hilltop Hoods have pushed themselves well outside their comfort zone. They’ve taken the opportunity to challenge their well established creative formula, making an album that’s redefined the trio’s musical output. 

The Great Expanse, on first listen, has the trademarks of Hoods’ albums that have come before it; a good balance between hip hop and glistening pop orchestration, not to mention the well-honed vocal dynamic between Pressure’s rough growls and Suffa’s slick flow. A couple of listens in however, and we begin to notice the different influences that have made their way onto the Hoods’ latest.

For one, the guest list is more extensive on this album than on any other Hilltop Hoods record, with Ecca Vandal, Nyassa, Illy, Ruel, Adrian Eagle and Timberwolf all making an appearance. The Great Expanse in result, is representative of possibly the freshest Hilltop Hoods sound and aesthetic yet. 

Hip hop in Australia is no longer about the nosebleed sections and chasing that feeling of days gone by. One could ask, after nine ARIA wins and years of acclaim behind them, what is left for an act like the Hoods to do? 

Well, look no further than The Great Expanse to answer that question.