Teenage Dads are an Australian four-piece indie rock band from the Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, who formed in 2015. and consists of Jordan Finlay (vocals, guitar), Connor McLaughlin (guitar), Angus Christie (bass). and Vincent Kinna (drums). The have a new EP entitled `Midnight Driving` which is released this month. 

This extended play opens with title track ‘Midnight Driving’ which is a fairly gentle dreamy, synth and bass driven summery number although the band explain that the track was written whilst “coming to an understanding that a relationship is on its way out. Maybe you don’t want it to end, maybe you do. Depends on which seat you’re in. Are you in the passenger seat begging to go for another drive? Or are you the driver ready to speed off into the night?” We have a more expansive offering with `Hey Diego` which was apparently inspired by the Nickelodeon children’s show Go, Diego, Go! (itself a spin-off of Dora The Explorer. The group describing the titular Diego as “the friend that everyone needs” and “a reminder that it is okay to be weird, to be different, to do things your own way”. There`s plenty of chugging guitar riffs along route in this quite quirky composition that almost veers towards the anthemic. 

`Teddy` is a pretty frantic and hyperactive submission which bounces along with frenetic lyrics that are almost yelled out at times and with the strap line of “Teddy doesn`t live here anymore” repeated throughout which becomes fairly hypnotic. We have an almost complete contrast with `3am` which is more of a love song or homage to that someone special who really lights your fuse or floats your boat. It a track that falls between The Beach Boys and Teenage Fanclub.  

I read that `’Exit Sign’ is “a song about relationships breaking down, loosely inspired by films like 500 Days Of Summer and Like Crazy.” The band have related and shared that “We wanted the song to be like those movies, you know. Follows along from the innocent beginnings right through to the bitter ends, realising maybe you weren’t meant to work things out, and that maybe it’s good that you’ve both moved on.” I can`t say that`s what come to mind but it`s a cheery upbeat uncomplicated ear worm, nevertheless. This six tracker closes out with `Goodbye Goodbye Again` which is a stripped back and laid back offering that is a recognition of somebody whose leaving or an eulogy to a friend. who has been a big part of your life. An introspective and thought provoking number to leave us on. 

The band have said that this release is “about perspective. How things look from one point of view, and how they can change over time from another outlook. The songs feel like diary entries, documented internally, like conversations you have with yourself when you go Midnight Driving. A constant, internal form of therapy almost.” 

It does seem to reflect a variety of themes not only lyrically but also musically as well and highlights a degree of growth or maturity in the band. The guys head out on a trek of their homeland in support of this release before heading to the UK in May, as special guests to fellow Aussie`s Lime Cordiale. A double bill not to be missed. 

Rating 8 / 10 

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