A couple of Fridays ago, I saw the Minnesota based indie rock band, Hippo Campus, perform at New York’s Terminal 5. This was the third time I’ve seen them - I have to say this wasn’t my favorite time I’ve seen them live, but the show was pretty great. They are currently on their Bambi tour, promoting their newest album of the same name. Bambi is a shift away from their typical style; it’s experimental while still staying true to Hippo Campus’ native sound (this is mainly attributed to lead singer Jake Luppen’s distinctive vocals).
Hippo Campus’ openers were The Districts, who are extremely popular in the Philadelphia area. I’ve seen them before and enjoyed seeing them again. Their sound is what I consider authentic indie rock; their songs create a feeling of grandeur with heavy guitars and powerful vocals, all while remaining melodic. Some of my favorite songs they played were "Salt" and "If Before I Wake", which are hits from their latest album, Popular Manipulations. I also really enjoyed hearing "Long Distance" from them, hearing it live is much better than the studio version.
Hippo Campus started off their set with "Bambi" which definitely got the crowd going. They followed "Bambi" with "Honestly" and "Doubt"– which are also on their newest album. They ended up playing most tracks from Bambi, with the exception of "Mistakes" and "Anxious"; although it does not seem that "Anxious" has been played at all during this tour. Hippo Campus did not disappoint their fans either, they played "Suicide Saturday", "Baseball", and "Simple Season" which are fan favorites from previous EPs/albums. They ended the set with the anthemic "Buttercup", followed by an encore of "Violet". The overall atmosphere of the crowd was great, but the show felt kind of short. Although they played a total of 16 songs, I felt that the one song encore fell a little flat. Besides the show feeling a little short, the concert was amazing. Hippo Campus’ stage presence has improved since I’ve seen them last, and I’m happy to see them playing larger venues than before. Everyone in the crowd really seemed to enjoy themselves and Hippo Campus was full of energy as well, so overall it was a good concert.