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Hippo Campus’ “Bambi” Breaks Boundaries

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Hippo Campus’ “Bambi” Breaks Boundaries

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Hippo Campus disregards the sound that was created in their first album “Landmark” with which they marked their presence at Loufest two years ago. After one full album and four EPs, the five-piece band regraces their arrival at the beginning of their sophomore album “Bambi.” The first song on the album “Mistakes” opens with airy beats overlayed by the band’s warm-up concert sounds and builds up to multiple vocalists.

The musically- and lyrically-talented band from Minnesota would have normally been on everyone’s Summer Spotify playlist, with every song being a ray of sunshine, but with “Bambi,” Hippo Campus asks for a chance to accompany us on our autumn walks.

This album deters from the happier tone marked by definitive beats and goes to the mellow voice. Hippo Campus shows the personal side of the band compared to the last album, and their growth and reflection is emphasized with the repetition of the word “Mistakes” in the chorus. The next three tracks removes the drums and revamps the audio with added techno beats. Although, “Why Even Try” revists the days of “Suicide Saturday” and “baseball,” the sixth track of the album “Think It Over” muffles the drummer over the synth and the lead singer Jake Luppen almost takes his time with the harmony and uses rhythm as a suggestion.

“Doubt” vibrantly reveals itself with opening offset synth beats on which the vocalist follows suit and it almost seems like the lead vocalist is competing there. The familiarity and comfort of the piece finally arrives in the chorus which breezily floats in the higher octaves. “Bubbles” starts out with a syncopated rhythm with Luppen singing “You could call me irregular, I’m a basic fix for a better man, Seasons change I’m a maniac..,” which reaches out with a soft calling. Then the song is then split by a few seconds of heavy metal orchestrated by staccato drums, electric guitar and controlled screams that almost have a melody. These nuances realistically mimic the ups and downs of one’s life, and proves how deep the band is trying to get with this new album.


Hippo Campus has shown as their growth and their willingness to take risks and become vulnerable with their new music. Already being a phenomenal stage presence, “Bambi” will simply widen their audience into other experimentalist listeners.

“Bambi” is simply the extremist side of Hippo Campus—the tracks that make it up either are louder due to hard-hitting backup vocals or stand out due to solo vocals over the absence of any music. Even with the change of Hippo Campus’ normal vibe, their newest album still scores. The original set of fans will fall in love with the songs, “Why Even Try,” “Honestly” and “Golden,” while appreciating the experimental sound that reinvents them.

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Hippo Campus’ “Bambi” Breaks Boundaries