Review: Melbourne’s hip-hop podcast, ‘Kulture Sound’

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Review: Melbourne’s hip-hop podcast, ‘Kulture Sound’

Kulture Sound podcast
Words by Jordan McCarthy

This week in our series reviewing the best and worst of Melbourne's podcast industry, we chuck on 'Kulture Sound'.

Melbourne is well known for its music scene and its music venues, on any night of the week if you’re feeling the need for a live music fix, you’ll be able to track something down easily. The hip-hop scene in Melbourne is no different, with venues like Laundry Bar and Chaise Lounge providing local fans with their hip hop needs.

If you’re one of Melbourne’s many hip-hop fans than you’ve likely heard of Kulture Sound Records, but have you also heard of their podcast simply titled Kulture Sound?

Keep up with the latest Melbourne films, TV shows, books and podcasts here.

Kulture Sounds is a weekly podcast with “real conversations with creatives” that gives those in the local hip-hop community a chance to tell their stories, whether that’s an artist, producer, video director or community leader. If they’re up for a chat, Kulture Sounds provides a platform for them to be heard.

The episodes length is determined by the content of the chats and can last anywhere between 30 minutes and two and half hours but they’re never a drag. Each episode feels exactly like a chat, with Kulture Sounds’ curiously anonymous host largely as vocal as his guest.

Though you may think this would be irritating and some people may find it that way, it’s generally not an issue as the host himself is a producer and an expert on the topics being discussed. Whether the conversation is about spitting bars with an artist, or fine-tuning beats with a producer, he is more than capable of holding his own.

The chat-like vibe to each episode is uncensored and really allows the guest’s personality to shine through. With no sound effects at all following the pumping intro tune you’ll even hear every tick or vocal mannerism the guest may have. This is a testament to the sound quality of each episode. Assuming they’re recorded – when possible – in the Kulture Sound recording studios, it’s no wonder the sound is flawless.

Though the vibe is relaxed, each episode is still a very in-depth conversation, touching on the personal lives of the guest’s, their upbringing, where they were raised, where the inspiration for their music comes from, both in the past, present and future. No stone is left unturned if the guest is willing to touch on it.

The latest episode is with Melbourne hip-hop act Naté (Nah-tay) Vibrations and titled ‘Keep it Movin’. Vibrations is a born and bred Melbourne alternative hip-hop artist who has featured on several tracks, but has slowly been gathering his own loyal local following, with his latest solo offering ‘Hop Out’ currently making the rounds.

Vibrations is a relaxed and fun interview; he talks about his past collabs, as well as his love of Harry Potter early in the episode before he and the host get into the nittier and grittier subjects. They delve into the struggle that is making it in the music industry, talking about the commitment that’s required when deciding that music is going to be your career, explaining there’s no university course or leg-up if you want to make at it as a musician – it can be a brutal industry.

They also discuss the struggles of being a musician in both Melbourne and wider Australia, as our cities are so small and widely spread across the country, and there are only so many shows you can play at the same venues over and over.

It’s these aspects of the episodes that are really enjoyable. For those who aren’t in the music industry themselves, they really offer rather eye-opening discussions, which focus on the struggles and commitment it takes to devote your life to music and highlights the passion that artists like Vibrations need to have to make it.

There are a bunch of podcasts devoted to music out there, but you will struggle to find one that is as uniquely devoted to Melbourne’s local hip-hop scene as Kulture Sounds is. Saying that, not every episode strictly involves a Melbourne talent, with interviews with other Australian artists and even overseas artists featured occasionally. But if you want to learn more about the upcoming local hip-hop talent, or the who’s who behind the scenes, then Kulture Sounds is a must listen for you.

For more in this series, check out our reviews of The Age’s Please Explain podcast here, or Melbourne’s ‘not a food wanker’ podcast The Melbourne Digest here.

You can stream Kulture Sounds on all major streaming platforms. With 50+ episodes ready and waiting for you to sink your teeth into, so dig in. Check them out here.