Hockey Dad's Blend Inn Is The Best Album Of The Year To Date
Hockey Dad’s sophomore album Blend Inn is a twelve-track tango through some of the most infectiously good surf punk being produced anywhere in the world. Grabbing your attention from the first endearingly loose riff, Hockey Dad, carry you through waves of fist in the air party anthems and almost ethereal dream punk in a what can only be described as a very fucking good album.
It’d be easy to look at Hockey Dad and immediately put them down as another surf punk party band full of beers, shoeys, shakas and loose nights. However, with two albums, a ridiculously fast selling national tour recently announced, showcase sets at SXSW and BIGSOUND and 107 shows in 2017 alone… You’d be dead wrong to do so. Hockey Dad are the epitome of an old school work ethic, tireless touring and a killer live show paying off. Having emerged as the cream of the crop in a genre of music known for it’s over saturation of same-same artists. With all that said, it’s ridiculous to think the band somehow had time to make it into the studio and produce something as considered and polished as Blend Inn.
Musically Blend Inn is a textbook example of surf infused rock n’ roll, executed in such a way they’d write the textbooks about it. Each song sits comfortably as a storm of jangly yet precise guitars, driving drums and soaring vocals or alternatively as a hungover road trip with mates letting everything turn itself back a notch and cruise. Songs never blend into a monochrome nor feel too apart to belong side by side on an album.
After a brief introduction to new music in The Stride, lead singles Homely Feeling and I Wanna Be Everybody kick in early catching you in a palm of familiarity before sending you into uncharted territory. Nine new songs, soon to be crowd favourites, beckoning you to not bring a map. You’re going to want to get lost in these.
Huge choruses lay in wake around every corner as an album of introspection kicks in. Songs of trying to fit in, find your way and feel at home punctuate a maturation in a band that have been carving their path since they were kids.
Blend Inn is as polished and intelligent as it is fun and free willed. Personally highlighted for me by the slow march floater Danny; a song that sounds ready to become to soundtrack to the dying summer months. Elsewhere on the album Disappointment Me’s chorus will find it’s way into your head for weeks to come whilst Running Out seethes with a palatable urgency.
Hockey Dad have taken an early run at your Album of the Year lists with Blend Inn and in doing so produced the best of album of 2018 to date.