2016 Artist Survey: Billy Fleming of Hockey Dad | Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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2016 Artist Survey: Billy Fleming of Hockey Dad

Fleming on 2016's Best Albums, Memorable Fan Encounters, First Kisses, and Scary Movies

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For Under the Radar‘s 14th annual Artist Survey we emailed some of our favorite artists a few questions relating to 2016. We asked them about their favorite albums of the year and their thoughts on various notable 2016 news stories involving either the music industry or world events, as well as some quirkier personal questions. Here are some answers from Billy Fleming of Hockey Dad. The Australian duo also features Zach Stephenson. Their debut album, Boronia, came out in 2016 via Kanine.

For our annual Artist Surveys we emailed the same set of questions to musicians about Trump and the election, 2016’s deaths, self-driving cars, Stranger Things, first kisses, scary movies they shouldn’t have seen as a child, which Friends character they are most like, and much more.

Pick up or download Under the Radar’s Best of 2016 / 15th Anniversary Issue for Artist Survey interviews with Amber Arcades, Austra, Faris Badwan of Cat’s Eyes and The Horrors, Boxed In, Caveman, The Charlatans, Cursive, Lucy Dacus, The Dears, C Duncan, Sadie Dupuis of Sad13 and Speedy Ortiz, Dutch Uncles, Ezra Furman, Robyn Hitchcock, The Invisible, Justin Lockey of Editors and Minor Victories, Lost Under Heaven (LUH), Lush, Midlake, Phantogram, The Range, Springtime Carnivore, Sunflower Bean, Surfer Blood, TEEN, The Thermals, Nick Valensi of CRX and The Strokes, Jenn Wasner of Flock of Dimes and Wye Oak, and Yuck.

Top 5 Albums of 2016

1. Twin Peaks: Down In HeavenBulletproof album really. Perfect mix of old school rock and modern pop that you can enjoy smashing beers too in the sun.
2. Horror My Friend: Stay In, Do NothingThese are our good mates from back home in Australia. These boys were almost not going to release this, but they wanted their own copies on vinyl for sentimental reasons, so they approached labels to get some pressed. Turns out they ended up getting signed and they’ve been smashing gigs ever since.
3. The Murlocs: Young BlindnessThis is a go-to when we’re having beers with our mates in the shed. The production is super simple, but they get so much out of it, which is super inspiring for us. “Rolling On” would have to be one of the best Australian singles of the decade.
4. Muuy Biien: Age of UncertaintyThese legends supported us on our USA tour earlier this year, so inevitably we’ve become good mates. We pumped their older records in the van as we drove across the states, but we were heaps excited for this new one. Do yourself a favor and see them live though, they are skitz.
5. The Last Shadow Puppets: Everything You’ve Come to ExpectWe’ve always been massive fans of Alex Turner, in whatever project he’s whipping up. Their debut was insane, but this one’s almost, if not better. Little bit darker, little sexier. Whatever they’ve done, they’ve done it right. Onya boys.

What are your thoughts on how the U.S. presidential election played out?

We just want to stay as far away from that man as possible.

What reality TV star would you have rather been elected president?

Paris Hilton’s dog.

If you were president, what would you try to accomplish in your first 100 days in office?

Let’s just say we’d legalize something.

What do you think Prince and Bowie’s afterlife project sounds like?

We like to think they gave up music and got into origami or something.

Which Friends character are you most like?

I don’t want to associate with anyone. I fucking hate that show so much.

What scary movie did you see way too young as a child, how’d you end up seeing it, and does it still scare you now?

The Ring has scarred us both. When we were kids, we annoyed my sister and her boyfriend to come into their room because we weren’t allowed to watch a movie with them. So they made us watch the most bullshit movie ever, for a couple of 8 year olds.

Are you ready for self-driving cars and a more automated future?

Anything that gets us home while we’re wasted, bring it on.

Tell us about the most memorable fan encounter you had this year.

We just came off stage from a festival in Australia, and The Sonics were getting ready to play after us. As we were wiping off the sweat and beers, they came up to us and said “That was great boys, loved it.” The whole ‘60s garage era is a massive inspiration for us, so we were insanely stoked.

Tell us about your first kiss.

Mine was a smooch with a pretty blonde girl I met on school holidays, and I never saw her again. Zach’s was with a girl named Alison behind the sports equipment shed at school. The next day she kissed someone else.

Under the Radar has been around for 15 years now, since December 2001. How do you feel the music industry has most changed in that time, both for the better and the worst?

I was 5 years old in 2001, so I don’t know how much validation I have. I think the main difference is that the Internet has changed everything. In the ‘00s you had to be on MTV to be heard, now you can release an album from your shed and everyone can hear it.

Which Stranger Things character do you most relate with?

I haven’t seen it, but Zach reckons he’d be Barb.

After Donald Trump won the election which band (or song or album) did you first turn to for solace and motivation?

Death: Politicians In My Eyes.

What deli menu item could you buy with your 2016 Spotify earnings?

Maybe one cream cheese bagel, if we’re lucky.

What would be the worst punishment the devil could devise for you in hell, if he exists?

Constantly biting into cheese and tomato jaffles that are way too hot.

Would you survive a zombie apocalypse? Explain.

Fuck no, we’d have no idea. Would probably just constantly surf until the zombies decide to paddle out.

What rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle cliché is truest?

Tons of beer, it sucks sometimes.

In which ways are you most like your parents and in which ways are you least like them?

We’re most like our parents because we appreciate a humble and simple life. We’re least like them because we have no money.

What’s the best practical joke you’ve ever played on someone?

That one time Zach crushed up an unknown pill and put it in my shot. I don’t know how we’re still friends.

What’s your favorite year for music and what were your favorite albums from that year?

2003. Obie Trice: Cheers.

What song would you like to be performed at your funeral and who would you like to sing it?

The Angels: Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again. When either one of us dies, the other one has to sing it by themselves a capella.


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