Editors’ Notes With their third album, Wollongong duo Hockey Dad continues their journey to becoming one of Australia’s most festival-friendly, sing-along-ready bands. The only problem? It arrives in the middle of a year without much live music to speak of. Sure, this significantly changes the fan experience for a band best enjoyed in fields and halls—but it also proves their talent for songs so fun, they’re just as good at home. Brain Candy—which arrives two years after Blend Inn—is chock full of frantic rhythms, bright riffs, electrifying vocals, and reflective, observational lyrics that signify newfound growth for the pair. The tone is set by opener “In This State,” a thrilling intro originally written during Splendour in the Grass in 2018, carrying the energy through tracks like “Good Eye” and “Nestle Down,” which are comforting in their familiarity, but no less fun. It’s on tracks like “Itch” where their progression is felt the strongest: The soaring album highlight feels nostalgic in its fuzzy Smashing Pumpkins guitars and surprisingly slow melody (Zach Stephenson’s biggest vocal triumph to date). And closer “Looking Forward to the Change” is solemn, soft, and gentle—until snares begin building an immense rush of sound that explodes across the album’s final minute.

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3:02
 
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3:33
 
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2:59
 
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3:54
 
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3:24
 
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4:54
 
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2:45
 
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3:37
 
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3:11
 
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2:45
 
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3:13
 
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3:30
 
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4:19
 

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