Posts Tagged ‘Little Grace’


Bashful Creatures is an unabashedly fun guitar pop record that only grows more rich with each listen. Alright, listen. What I’m trying to say is that it’s pretty much perfect.Favorite track: “Suicide Saturday”. 

Four-piece rock band Hippo Campus, made up of ’13 grads from a charter high school in St. Paul, managed to emerge with a debut song and video that are at a higher quality than many of the veteran bands performing around town.

“There’s so much talent in younger bands nowadays,” says Jake Luppen, who leads Hippo Campus along with co-frontman and guitarist Nathan Stocker. “We have a bunch of friends who are doing the high school thing like we were doing last year. They’re all really talented, but it seems like a lot of venues prey on the fact that they’re so young, and make them sell a bunch of tickets. It’s a really big problem. These booking agencies, they don’t compensate for performances. You play shows for free unless you sell a bunch of tickets.” the band feed off of each other’s frenetic, restless energy. The band met up between recording sessions for their almost-finished debut album, The Halocline, which is being produced by the guitarist Dustin Kiel (who most frequently performs with Dessa), and are clearly raring to get back into the studio to knock out the last few takes and start mixing it into the final product. Though they have only been performing together for a year, the four musicians in Hippo Campus have already spent time refining their skills in other bands—Lussen and bassist Zach Sutton played together in Whistle Kid, while Stocker and Allen were in a band called Northern. The four met up at the St. Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists and became fast friends, which eventually led to them forming an exciting new project.

On the band’s one and only single, “Little Grace,” Sutton leads the quartet through a buoyant, beachy guitar jam that could easily be mistaken for a Vampire Weekend B-side, if only because his voice closely mirrors Ezra Koenig’s tone and inflection. But just don’t tell the band that they share similarities with that chart-topping indie band.

In reality, the band says the are most influenced by Bombay Bicycle Club, Last Dinosaurs, Little Comets, and the defunct Manchester group WU LYF, who also had an enduring philosophical impact on Hippo Campus.