Son cancer battle to fund project

FOR six long, heartbreaking months, Hilltop Hoods MC Pressure lived in a hospital room as his then eight-year-old son Liam underwent chemotherapy for leukaemia.

Each night as his little boy slept, the father wrote songs in a desperate attempt to make sense of the life and death struggle every family endures when cancer strikes a loved one.

One of those songs, Through The Dark, is the story of those six months of hell and it not only has a happy ending for Liam but hopefully for other young cancer sufferers like him thanks to the groundbreaking video which launches on Friday.

The Hoods have teamed up with Google Play to create an interactive 3D animated music video which will raise funds for CanTeen to kickstart a bold project to give cancer patients special access to concerts.

Pressure, aka Dan Smith, said he wrote and rewrote Through The Dark as Liam underwent treatment.

“It came out as a song about a father’s love for his son and his words of encouragement and positivity for a bright future for his boy,” Smith said.

“Four years later, he has that bright future; he was two years in remission and now two years cancer-free.”

The tech giant was keen to partner with the Hoods on an artistic venture because the Australian hip hop heroes are one of their most popular acts on the Google Play platform.

Smith said they suggested working on a video for Through The Dark and the concept evolved into the innovative clip which changes between two versions, the “light” representing hope and “dark” representing fear.

The clip switches between the two versions of the video when you tilt or rotate your device.

It also works on a desktop.

And because so many fans and parents shared their stories about living with cancer when the song was released, Google and the Hoods decided to use the video to raise funds for Side Of Stage.

Google’s Sophie Hirst said the film was evidence that “music and technology is an exciting place to play in.”

“Behind the scenes, this film is made entirely of code. For example, using 3D cameras mapped to the phone’s accelerometer, the film uses mobile technology combined with complex modelling and animation to capture the sense of a world turned upside down. We’re really pushing the limits of what a phone can do,” she said.

She also jokingly revealed that Smith had one “diva” moment when he requested changes to the face of his father character in the video.