Album Review: Hockey Dad - Brain Candy

31 July 2020 | 1:12 pm | Alasdair Belling

"... starting to explore a new side of themselves."

More Hockey Dad More Hockey Dad

NSW South Coast duo Hockey Dad have truly exceeded expectations with how far they’ve come with taking their sunny brand of surf-rock to the world stage over the last few years, and a premature take of their third LP Brain Candy would be that the lads are doubling down on their hooky brand of fuzz-rock.

After all, all the things that the festival crowds have come to love about the laid back rockers are here in initially predictable abundance. Cuts I Missed Out, Milk In The Sun and Good Eye are as much festival party anthems as they are coastal road-trip jams - just what we would expect from the lads.

However, from stand-out slow burner Itch onwards, things take a decidedly darker and somewhat experimental(ish) turn. Keg has the band trying their hand at a reggae-infused funk rock, complete with organ sfx, while Reno and Looking Forward To The Change strip back the rock and showcase frontman Zach Stephenson’s knack for melody and thoughtful wordplay.

Hockey Dad has experienced the transition to young adulthood in a way that is both thrilling yet disconcerting, such is the nature of being in a touring band. On Brain Candy they sound like two men beginning to process this fact - and in doing so they’re gradually starting to explore a new side of themselves.