Prove your humanity

The buses rolled through the dust and by the vines into the Swan Valley’s Oakover Grounds. Decked out in glitter and fancy festival attire, Perth punters were ready to drunkenly dance the day away. Oakover Grounds was set up with plenty of bar queues, shady spots to sit and aesthetically pleasing places for Instagram photos. The sky was clear and the sun was beating down—it was the perfect weather for a wine and a good time, and that’s what Hot Dub Wine Machine 2019 delivered.

Former Triple J host, Alex Dyson didn’t draw the sizable crowd you’d expect. With an early set time, festival-goers weren’t quite ready (i.e. sufficiently drunk enough) to be dancing by the stage. Nevertheless, Dyson set the scene, providing some background tunes to hype people up and let them take in their surroundings.

Decked out in an animal-print playsuit, Sydney singer-songwriter GRAACE was next to take on the Wine Machine crowd. Her set flashed by and she was only on stage for 25 minutes but pushed through the tracks. Last Night was my personal favourite –a catchy track with angelic vocals that reminded me a bit of Georgia Nott from Broods. I was left with a desire to want to listen to her when I got home (which I did and I recommend you do too).

Opening with rock anthem We Will Rock You by Queen, Kinder was off to a decent start. Consisting of sisters Briony and Savannah, the electronic duo gave another meaning to stage presence. With synchronised dance routines and electric outfits, there’s no question as to why the Maitland based pair were included in the line-up. Despite some mic malfunctions, the growing crowd was keen to stick around for the duo’s mixes, with crowd favourites being their renditions of Childish Gambino’s This is America and Cardi B’s Bodak Yellow. Closing off their set with Bon Jovi’s It’s My Life, listeners were left in a high place, ready to hear the next set.

Confidence Man ran onto stage and punters were ready and eager to dance the next forty-five minutes away to their electro-pop tunes. Better Sit Down Boy, one of their more popular tracks, was a definite hit as chardy and cans were raised in the air while the crowd grooved along. Out the Window and C.O.O.L Party were among the set’s mix of dance tunes, along with Don’t You Know I’m in a Band—a funky and energetic track that you can’t help but enjoy. The band’s most popular tune, My Boyfriend, was a clear crowd favourite judging by the singing and jumping around. Confidence Man’s performance was filled to the brim with energy and the crowd had no choice but to reciprocate it.

Up next was Hayden James, an artist you should no doubt be familiar with. Hailing from Sydney, the songwriter and record producer was an act that came to impress. Starting his set off with epic track NUMB, listeners were lucky enough to get a second round of GRAACE. After crowd favourites, Something About You and Better Together got the audience going, Hayden James introduced a new track, Permission for Love. Hayden James put on one hell of a show for the festival goers, concluding his set with the much anticipated, Just Friends.

The Presets was a highlighted name on the line-up and they stayed true to this on the day. The crowd was packed in close and were buzzing for the duo to begin. It was the most excited they had seemed all day—Hayden James’ crowd being a close second. Accompanied by colourful and mesmerising animations, The Presets smashed through the crowd favourites—Talk Like That, Martini, My People and This Boys in Love were among some of the names. The set delved through a good mix of older and newer tracks, like Downtown Shutdown and Do What You Want, and left punters with smiles on their faces and ready for the main event, Hot Dub Time Machine.

Last but not least, the act that started it all, Hot Dub Time Machine. Being so highly anticipated, it came as no surprise that it pulled an epic crowd. Sydney’s Tom Loud first launched his time travelling party concept, Hot Dub Wine Machine in 2011, quickly growing it to become one of Australia’s coolest festivals. The Australian DJ showcased top hits throughout the decades, exclusively using vinyl, controlling the visuals and audio from turntables. His stellar performance kicked off with a short display of fireworks, which continued to be a feature throughout the set. Beginning in the mid-1950s with the timeless Rock Around the Clock, punters were already swing dancing, singing along and eager to begin the time travelling journey. With live musicians, pyrotechnics and classic tracks, it’s obvious how Tom Loud’s concept grew so rapidly. Counting down the years with crowd favourites You Can Never Tell, Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!, Blue and HUMBLE., Loud never missed a beat.