In the Beginner's Guide to Zen, it's said that very few people can put dots on a piece of paper in random order. No matter how hard they try, there's almost always an order to where they place them. But Drinks seem to have forgotten what they know about music, about order, and it’s led to them creating something I’m not used to hearing, dare I use the words pure and original. Hippo Lite actually reminds me of the The Shaggs, at least their background story which tells of three sisters given instruments with no formal training and then recording an album under the direction of their father. Odd percussion, various string loops, an organ, and a piano flutter throughout the album to orchestrate a twisted baroque affair.
Hippo Lite is a breath of fresh air from the frantic punk-energy of Drinks debut album Hermits on Holiday. In fact, the recording process Tim Presley and Cate Le Bon took to record Hippo Lite is essentially a tribute to the title of their debut album.
Where it could fail as a piece of experimental gibberish, Hippo Lite works for a few reasons, one being the folksy charm that surrounds the whole thing. It feels like an open dialogue – like an album full of simple questions directed at the listener. Does this work? Are you comfortable? Do you know where you are? Would you like to join us? It’s romantic once you spend time with it. Timeless, really. No trends or fads, just pure invention from two quirks enjoying a sort of solitude in a quaint and pre-digital age village.