By McKenna Klaphake
With the release of Hippo Campus’s new EP, “Wasteland” the indie rock band marks the beginning of a new direction for the group that has become a local legend. The five track EP proves that the band is highly skilled at what they do. They were able to incorporate new country influences to the pop/rock sound that has garnered fans from all over the world. The complex balancing act of trying new things and catering to long time fans was executed with ease with this EP. They gave us a taste of something different and fresh without steering too far from what so many have come to love. Hippo Campus took a calculated risk and, in my opinion, were extremely successful.
As a huge fan of the band, and someone who doesn’t typically gravitate towards country music of any kind, I was hesitant when they first announced the release of “Kick in the Teeth” and “Yippie Ki Yay” with graphics of a speeding horse. However, I was pleasantly surprised to hear the new sound that Hippo Campus created. Don’t be mistaken, the country influences that are clearly evident in the tracks heard on “Wasteland” are far from mainstream country songs played on the radio today. They are still Hippo Campus and the indie rock sound is still at the forefront of the majority of their songs. Tracks like “Honeysuckle” and “Moonshine” have relatable lyrics and catchy beats that can be heard on all of their previous releases. Their music continues to create a good vibe feel, even when singing about heartbreak. As we trudge far too slowly into the summer months, this is the album that I know I will have on repeat when the days are sunny and warm. While Hippo Campus may be entering their country era, they have not forgotten their roots. The creativity of the group keeps fans on their toes and ensures their longevity as a band. I personally cannot wait to see where their new sound takes them next!
“Wasteland” is now available to download or stream wherever you get your music! Hippo Campus is currently on tour and will be making a hometown stop on June 24th at the Bayfront Festival Park in Duluth.