Review: Hockey Dad – Boronia (2016)

The exciting debut album from the Australian punk rockers.

Australian punk rockers, Hockey Dad, are releasing their first full-length album, called Boronia, on 12th August.

The duo, originally from Windang in New South Wales, were one of the most talked-about new talents at this year’s South by South-West festival, now they are ready to hit us with a follow-up to their Dreamin’ EP.

Dreamin’ is five songs of raw, beachy fun. If you immersed yourself in the music while listening, if you close your eyes, you can almost imagine them playing the other side of an empty music hall. They don’t need an audience; they are just two guys having fun up on stage.

Dreamin’ felt very much like a band starting out though, in no way was it perfect, but it was good.

Boronia is very much the same. Starting out with a punch in your face with Can’t Have Them, they grab your attention from the get-go. The distortion of the guitar and the backing vocals making you wish you could pack the car up and head to the beach on a warm summers evening.

A Night Out is one for getting ready on a Friday or Saturday evening. With a feel of Weezers Buddy Holly about it, I dare you to not at least nod your head or impersonate a Pidgeon when the chorus kicks in.

I’m So Tired is good; wistful in its adolescence, one that is annoyingly relatable for some with lyrics such as “I’ve got something in my mind.”

But the pick of the bunch is ‘Jump the Gun.’ Two and a half minutes of hooky, punk-pop. “I don’t want to go home, I’m having too much fun” perfectly epitomises the feel of the song and album. Just wish it went on for a little longer.

Laura reminds me of ‘Let’s Dance to Joy Division’ by The Wombats, the last two lines of each verse have similarities. Hunny Bunny seems to just go by, nothing much else to say about it, as does Raygun. Both just feel like filler songs, don’t imagine they will be everyone’s favourite, but would be good for live performances, good opportunity for crowd participation.

Dylan’s Place is the token, slightly slowed down song on the album, so it really allows the voice to shine through, and singer Zach Stephenson delivers a beautiful vocal, charming and endearing in its youth.

Overall, the album felt like it followed a narrative of an amazing night out where you go, have fun, fall in love, and end the night on the beach with some of your favourite people, begging the Australian moon to stay a little longer.

A fantastic feel-good album that takes you back to those magical nights, with plenty of hooks and a whole bunch of fun.

Boronia is out on Friday (12th August) and is available on all major streaming sites.

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