Live Review: Hippo Campus + Lauran Hibberd @ Concorde 2, Brighton (24/2/19)

Hippo Campus were back in the UK having not toured since early 2017. This time they were joined by Isle of Wight indie-rock artist Lauran Hibberd. This was their biggest UK tour to date and they were playing the final night at the Concorde 2 in Brighton.

Last time I saw Lauran Hibberd she was playing the Edge of the Wedge in Portsmouth to less than 100 people. Now she was coming on stage with her band to a busy Concorde 2 and you could see instantly how much she has developed as an artist. From the first note of her opener ‘Sugardaddy‘ she seemed far more confident than I have seen before and was definitely aided by the warm reception she got from the large crowd. Playing a mixed setlist of unreleased and released songs, the response from the crowd makes it seem like she will have gained a fair few fans from the show. Her storytelling style is refreshing and fun, whilst her fuzzy guitar playing just makes you want to dance and sing along. An outstanding performance from someone who will certainly be headlining these venues in the future.

It was then time for Hippo Campus, and by now the crowd was absolutely packed and patiently waiting for the Minnesota band. The last time I saw Hippo Campus they were supporting Little Comets at O2 Academy Oxford and had not even released an album. Since then they have released 2 albums and have mastered their own distinctive sound. Opening with ‘Bambi’, the crowd were instantly dancing and singing along. A majority of the songs from the start of the set came from their most recent album ‘Bambi’ and it was clear how popular their latest release was with the listeners. Every song received as popular reaction as the last and the band were certainly enjoying playing live to such a great reaction. They did venture back to older EPs with songs like ‘Baseball’ off the Warm Glow EP and ‘South’ and ‘Suicide Saturday’ off of their ‘South’ and ‘Bashful Creatures’ EP’s respectively. With most of the crowd singing along to even their older material, the band had certainly developed a serious fan base in London. The finished with ‘Violet’ before temporarily leaving the stage. Their encore started with ‘boyish’ before they closed the night, and their UK tour with ‘buttercup’ and the upbeat, funky indie-rock that Hippo Campus are known for had the crowd dancing one last time.

Hippo Campus have certainly turned into an impressive band. Their funky style has been perfected across their EPs and two albums and after seeing them live again, even bigger things are definitely going to happen for Hippo Campus.

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