The indie music scene, while sometimes feeling saturated and derivative, is in my opinion still producing some of the most interesting and exciting music available today and Hippo Campus is no exception.
The St.Paul five piece indie rock band made up of Jake, Nathan, Whistler, Zach and DeCarlo have been friends since middle school with every release serving as a look into their lives and where they are at.
The band just released their 3rd album aptly named LP3 earlier this month and are now fresh on a tour featuring support from singer Jelani Aryeh.
Aryeh, originally from San Diego opened the evening and while technically a solo artist, his accompanying band also did a great job of getting involved, hyping the crowd up and getting them to participate.
The band after a couple songs met the crowd with a “We’ve never been here before” before being met right back with a midwest welcome.
They played about 45 minutes ending with standout song “Stella Brown” a song that although it’s only February, will have you wishing you were chilling by a pool somewhere.
Now most shoes I have been to, you’ll hear some kind of playlist in between sets. Usually similar kinds of music but not always. Not this show.
The band had simply a heavy, bassy buzzing noise for about a half hour before their set only creating more anticipation than you would usually see.
Being equal parts long time fan and also having their album on repeat since release date, I surely can not have been the only one eager to see if, or how, they would balance their setlist and it is with great pleasure I can say they delivered.
The band opened the set with album opener “ 2 young 2 die” a song that really highlights DeCarlo’s trumpet playing as well as some Bon Iver meets Imogen Heap esque vocoder vocals from singer Luppin. The song features these high energy brass and drum breaks all while providing some somber and maybe all to relevant lines like “ Everyone takes what they can handle. Everyone thinks that they’re too young to die.”
As far as the setlist goes, the band exceeded expectations by showcasing not only all 10 songs off of LP3 throughout their setlist but crowd favorites such as “Bambi” “Warm Glow” and my personal favorite “Baseball”
While this tour is just starting and continues in the US all the way through the end of April, fans who have not got tickets yet better move quickly because a quick look at the band’s website shows a lot of the dates are already sold out.
Hippo Campus can be found on all socials @thehalocline