Videohippos: Unbeast the Leash
Teetering on the fringes of happycore?, techno, and noise, the Baltimore duo VIDEOHIPPOS have concocted heavy pop rounds on their debut UNBEAST THE LEASH. Jubilant at points, dark at others, VIDEOHIPPOS seem to have a sense of foreboding about the future. Some could point to hints of Manchester, and possibly Providence, but the end result is ultimately Baltimore City and the VIDEOHIPPOS home in the phenomenon that is Wham City (Ponytail, Ecstatic Sunshine, Dan Deacon et al).
As their name suggests VIDEOHIPPOS perform live with both audio and video. Backed by a giant screen while performing, VIDEOHIPPOS project personal and pop culture video collages in synch with the music. Though captivating its hard to distract from the stick skills of drummer Kevin O'meare (drums, vocals, keys) and pop weavings of guitarist Jim Triplett (guitar, vocals, keys). Pummeling his 4-piece kit with precision and power, O'meare draws drooling mouths agape, as well as creating the centerpiece for the VIDEOHIPPOS ballads. With beats in place Triplett works in waves of guitar melodies either via 6-string electric or a small toy guitar. Sampled beats and tones fit snuggly between the two while both Hippos share vocal duties.
Cloaked in coats of neon, flourescents, and bouts of joyous mania VIDEOHIPPOS debut UNBEAST THE LEASH at first glance would be a pop album, but after a couple listens you realize there is so much more going on here...they are trying to warn us.