WINDANG band Hockey Dad has been named one of the best young bands in the country, announced as a finalist in Triple J radio's Unearthed High competition.
The young surf-pop duo made the competition shortlist after being picked from 650 high school entrants nationwide.
"It was definitely a surprise. Entering was a good opportunity for exposure, but we didn't expect to come this far," said drummer Billy Fleming, from Lake Illawarra High School.
The winning band, to be announced in coming weeks, will have a song recorded at the Triple J studios and win a concert at their school from Australian rapper Seth Sentry.
Past winners of Unearthed High include Victorian band Stonefield, and Melbourne's Hunting Grounds and Snakadaktal.
"I was just checking out the list of winners the other day. It's a great launching pad and has kick-started many careers," Fleming said.
The shortlisting continues a rich run of form for Hockey Dad, the pairing of Fleming and guitarist Zach Stephenson, who last week began a national tour launching debut EP Dreamin.
They played two shows at Rad Bar on Sunday, have had new single I Need A Woman played on radio, and were last week named for the Yours & Owls mini-festival in Stuart Park in October. Their next home-town show is August 29 at Anita's Theatre, Thirroul.