Hidden Hospitals - EP 002 (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Hidden Hospitals

EP 002 (2012)


I wasn't a fan of EP 001 a few months back but I know that I'm waiting for EP 003 with bated breath. Hidden Hospitals knocked this five-tracker out the park. There's a stylish ebb-and-flow to the record and a lot of substance built in around David Raymond's strong vocal caliber. Add in solid musicianship, and you've got a winner. That's exactly what the Chicago band did.

I felt a bit of innovation and experimenting lacked on the previous release and I'm glad I've been proven wrong here. Raymond's vocal delivery and dynamic songwriting is a key asset but the intricate guitar work, sleek basslines and slick drumming all complement Raymond's voice like a glove. They've honed their talent to near-perfection here, with "Featherweight" and "Absence of Emotion" leading the way as powerful modern rock songs. I think they've surpassed that alternative moniker they first grafted early on as the absorption into this record is unparalleled.

The uncanny difference from the last EP to me seems to be exploration and the ensuing application musically. Whatever they discovered and exposed is really riveting as seen on "Picture Perfect." It's got brilliant hooks, the right combination of neat breakdowns and a moving chorus. The songwriting has evolved tremendously and their philosophy towards arranging a song with multiple complex parts is now even better.

The production quality is stunning and Raymond's penchant for crafting confidence with consistent, catchy melodies scripts another hit with "Monsters." It's less turbulent and takes some pace off at just the right time time showing the band's range and inventiveness. By the time "Lullaby" rolls around to close the record, fans of Damiera and Kiss Kiss would have enjoyed their fill and seen the many dimensions to a band that I think is gonna be knocking...and breaking down a lot of doors soon. It's an intelligently scripted record and it sounds just as good as it's written. Definitely get this one.