Ten of the region's best bands will battle it out for almost $20,000 in prizes on Saturday in the final of the Original LP Band Comp at Woonona Bulli RSL.
After months of heats, eight heat winners, one repechage round winner and one people's choice band will take to the stage this weekend.
Illawarra acts including Dlinkwnt, the Dirty Headbangers, Furious Monk and Shoot The Breeze will play to a crowd of 700.
Michael Beckett of reggae act Chuparosa knows his band is up against stiff competition.
"We only won our heat by one point, and the band who came second in our heat won the repechage round, so it will be a close final," he said.
Beckett, drummer for the eight-piece band, said the quality and tight nature of the competition showed the renewed strength of the Wollongong music scene.
"It's certainly the best it has been for a few years," he said.
"There are lots of pop-up venues and small bars. Gone are the days of the Oxford Tavern or the Patch."
However, Beckett said bands would relish the rare chance to play on such a large stage.
"Most shows in Wollongong are smaller, so it will be great to have a big venue with a full light show and sound system. You don't get that too often."
He said if they win they will use the money to complete their second EP, due for release in the summer.
Tickets for the final are available from the RSL reception.