Matt McCroskey, class of 2018, has participated in roughly four of the past five WXCU-produced shows on campus.
He officially joined the band back in 2015 after previously filling in for the old drummer alongside vocalist and guitarist David Fuller and the band’s old bassist, who Nick Shew has since taken the place of.
The band creates post-punk, upbeat music that’s reminiscent to driving with the windows down in the spring. The music is nostalgic, yet still original, with heavy energy and plenty of excitement.
“I think [the sound] is definitely rooted in ‘80s post-punk/goth rock tropes,” Shew said.
He said that the band’s energy is more uptempo and danceable than the music of their influences, rather than “being very capital-S ‘Sad.’”
“We’re frantic without being anxious, dancey without being too happy; a wacky and wonderful group of lads who want you to have a good time,” McCroskey said.
Fuller said that when he writes songs, he likes to replicate how he feels.
“Music to me has never been about aiming for a specific sound, more an emotion,” he said. “Whatever I’m listening to that makes me feel something profound at the time usually bleeds into my work.”
In terms of a creative process, McCroskey said it isn’t very glamorous.
“Usually the ‘cool riff’ we build a new song off of happens between [Shew and Fuller], while I’m still setting up my drums,” he said. “By the time I’m ready to play, we kind of have a rough idea of where we want this little loop to go.”
From there, they progress, ultimately putting together an iPhone-recorded demo.
“It’s an intimately collaborative process, which can be stressful, but also the payoff is good,” McCroskey said.
Hidden places is looking forward to playing Frostbite Festival alongside Teamonade (who Shew said he’s going to ask why their band name isn’t Arnold Palmer) and Equipment (both of which McCroskey said “rip”).
“Playing at my alma mater … is always an honor,” McCroskey said.
But he’s worried there may be a little too much comfort between university students and himself.
“I love you all so much, but y’all need to expand your horizons,” he said. “Redownload Tinder. Talk to some new honeys. Keep your options open, I think it’s the healthiest thing for the both of us.”
Frostbite Festival will be the last show hidden places will play in Columbus for now while they hide away to write new music and prepare for traveling around for shows later this year.
“Instead of listening to us, you should stream and get to know 645AR, who is the most boundary-pushing rapper and artist to come up in a minute,” McCroskey said.
WXCU’s Frostbite Festival will be held at 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31 in CMC 121 and is free with a Capital ID or $10 for general admission.