Words and photography by Chontalle Musson
It’s not every day that bands venture beyond Auckland while on tour, so to find out that Aussie duo Hockey Dad were bringing their NZ tour through Tauranga was a happy surprise. Add to that a great supporting line up, and it was guaranteed to be a great night.
The night’s main support came in the form of Tom, Stu and Rian, or as they call themselves – Good Boy. Hailing from Australia Good Boy didn’t have the home field advantage that the openers did, Spoonfed and Joe’s Van, but this didn’t stop them from bringing everything they had. I don’t know of many bands that introduce each and every song during the performance but with songs like A Waste Of Approximately 122 Million Dollars (Taxpayer Funded) and Ya Mum’s Ya Dad, it only seemed fitting that vocalist, Rian, shouted them proudly in his thick Aussie accent to the excite crowd and add some humour to the night. Laughing and jumping along to their dirty punk beats, the trio seemed to have a lot of fun just playing their tunes for the eager crowd, smiles all round. As they made their way through a good mix of their slower and fast pace songs, the band really showcased just what a versatile band they are.
It can be difficult for two-piece bands to offer as much on stage as they can in the studio, but Aussie duo, Hockey Dad have got their set down to a fine art. Billy and Zach took to the stage to soundcheck, highlighting just how chill this band and their fans are. By this point the crowd waited in anxious anticipation for the band to get started, mostly due to the fact that it had been a two hour music marathon since the first opener took the stage. It would have been easy to be impatient, but fuelled with alcohol and pure hype Totara Street wasn’t ready to give up just yet. Vibrant guitar and heavy drums filled the venue, and it became instantly clear just how loved this band is, as the crowd’s screaming of the lyrics took over Zach’s vocal attempts in the small venue. The lads play each song with enthusiasm and ease, managing to work together to play each song without a setlist.
After the initial burst of energy the boys launch into a song from their new album Blend Inn, and while I was a little hesitate the crowd might die down, this energy continued and the crowd cheered and bounced with excitement throughout the night as drummer, Billy, counted them in. Throughout the set the boys played a great mix of songs both new and old, really giving fans a little of everything coming across like naturals on the (poorly lit) stage and doing the best they could given the limited nature of the venue. They expressed their gratitude mid set for fans coming and staying out so late as they continued to play until early hours of Saturday morning – far past my bedtime. Hockey Dad are exactly what you’d expect given their Aussie origins: incredibly chill and totally obscene. I lost count of the total of number of times “fuck”, causing the word to lose all meaning as I watched from the balcony.