Three young men, a guitar, drums, bass and musical chemistry is the recipe for Hidden Places’ first EP, “Three Step,” released in September.
Drummer Matt McCroskey described the band’s sound as “fast, jittery and almost dancy.” The post-punk vibe of Hidden Places largely comes from how Kiko Cvetanovski, a third-year in nutrition, and David Fuller, a third-year in journalism, work together.
Cvetanovski and Fuller have been working together on songs since 2009, but Hidden Places was born only over a year ago.
There isn’t just one songwriter in Hidden Places — its songwriting process is collaborative and fully based on improvisation and spontaneity.
“We just go downstairs and totally improvise,” Fuller said. “Then we say, ‘wow that sounds cool, let’s work on that.’”
The three musicians take pride in how well they work together on the songs.
“It really translates into our sound, because it is really out of nowhere,” Cvetanovski said.
But the band’s favorite environment is definitely not within the walls of their rehearsal basement. Hidden Places is meant to be seen on the stage, where Cvetanoski said it is necessary for the band to act “bombastic.”
Hidden Places’ shows are short, loud and powerful. The group said a concentration of energy is important to them.
“We should be moving on stage; we should be like the actors,” Cvetanovski said. “The audience is observing us, they should be seeing us move with the songs.”
The band’s first months were dedicated almost exclusively to live performance. With only phone recordings of their songs, it managed to get up to four shows in January.
“Just the fact that we got all the shows that we got with phone recordings baffles me,” Fuller said.
As a matter of fact, this “shittiness” of the recordings is precisely what lured McCroskey into joining the band.
“I sent him the recordings and he answered, ‘I like how it sounds like shit,’” Fuller said.
Building up on their experience with shows, the band released a more developed version of their work in September. Now it is currently working on the more ambitious project of releasing a longer EP that will reflect its progress in songwriting.
“(The) Columbus scene is really good, so you have to do something really great to stick out, or something really really bad,” Fuller said. “We’d prefer the former.”
The healthy competition that exists between the artists of Columbus constitutes a real motivation for the band to surpass itself, Fuller said.
“The first competition is against our former selves,” Cvetanovski said.