Soundbite: ‘Landmark’ by Hippo Campus

Released in February 2017, “Landmark” by Hippo Campus quickly found its way into my heart. Very rarely do I like every song on an album, but “Landmark” showed me that it isn’t as impossible as I once thought.

The 13-track album is Hippo Campus’ first full-length album, following  two EPs: “South” and “Bashful Creatures.” Hippo Campus also  released a new EP, titled “Warm Glow,” in September. The three song EP, while still similar to “Landmark,” has a more airy and relaxing sound to it.

The indie rock band is sure to stir emotion and get you thinking. Whether it is a feeling of nostalgia, joy or sorrow, you will leave with a different emotion than when you started.

According to Hippo Campus, “Landmark” has a couple of major themes. The first half of the album focuses on the way college-aged students use social media. It is almost a sarcastic tone, critiquing youth culture. The second half of the album focuses more on experiences and personal growth and understanding. It’s a lot more emotional and relatable. Unlike many albums these days, “Landmark” is not centered around the usual romantic, love songs. It talks a lot more about personal opinions and realizations.

The first song I actually heard on the album was “Buttercup.” A local college radio station back at home had it lined up in a playlist, so I was sure to hear it at least once when driving to and from my internship. “Buttercup” is one of the more upbeat and harder songs on the album in that it definitely will get you tapping your feet and humming along. The song ends strong and leaves you pumped up and ready to go. The lyrics of “Buttercup” mention a lot of phrases that allude to a fist fight or a boxing match

“Epitaph” is probably my favorite song on the album, though it is honestly very hard to choose a favorite. The song starts out slow with isolated vocals. Once the guitar comes in, the song picks up, but does not lose the original vibe from the beginning of the song. The addition of vocal harmonies throughout the song gives it both emotion and a feeling of nostalgia. I also like that it doesn’t follow the typical pattern of popular songs: verse one, chorus, verse two, chorus, bridge, chorus. Instead, it strays away and does its own thing, which is refreshing and new. The lyrics in “Epitaph” allude to the feeling of nostalgia and thinking back to past situations and relationships.

“Monsoon” is quite different from all the other songs on the album, which gives a refreshing and new feel to the album. It is slow throughout with somber and serious lyrics. The first half of the song feature vocals complemented by a piano. Guitars and drum present themselves as the song goes on and give the song a little more layers and depth. The song ends with the lyrics, “it should’ve been me” repeated until it fades out. The song, from what I have gathered, is about the guilt that a person feels after a family member or friend dies.

Overall, “Landmark” exceeded my expectations as an album. The relatable lyrics matched with the music create a beautiful and attention-catching album. I could not recommend Hippo Campus enough, as I couldn’t honestly tell you that there is a song I do not like on the album.

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