Temporary Basement
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Temporary Basement

Arlington, Virginia, United States | SELF

Arlington, Virginia, United States | SELF
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"Interim Review 3"

Temporary Basement:
Permanently Rocking

Virginia-based indie group to tour New York in July

NEW YORK – The philosophy that everything in life is temporary demands a certain code of conduct– a behavior that can only be summed in one word, Carpe Diem – seize the day.

If life is as fleeting the shape a cloud forms every second, it follows that every moment must be chewed right down to the bone.

Fittingly, a band that plays music with such vibrant urgency calls themselves Temporary Basement.

The trio of Mike Favila, Emil Favila, and David Thong aren't wasting any time at all. Their music pushes adrenaline like it pushes father time until it snaps. But that's not the highlight of their music at all. Their musical energy is blended with a tender sentimentality in their words that begs listeners to succumb to the belief that life is too precious and short, so it must be enjoyed.

Their album, Interim, released last year, is a work of brilliance very representative of the current indie scene, where the best bands remain unsigned.

The first track off Interim called Badfriend is a musical assault that does not compromise melodic integrity. So is the next track, Rescind, which clearly establishes that the band are exemplary musicians and very able producers: The arrangements are well-thought of and the recordings are crisp and compelling.

Other gems in the 11-track collection are: Driving, Holdover, and the reggae number, Laguna Beach. The album is so good, it is a mistake not to get it. The band has two other previous albums called Subscribing to My Youth, and TBCD, both are available on CDBaby.com.

Though the band is from down south, and their album is only available online, New York indie music fans will have a rare chance of seeing this group live and buy their album from them as they play the New York metro area next month.

On July 10, they will play Automata Chino in Jersey City, and on July 13, will rock The Annex, here in Manhattan.

For those who cannot wait for the gig and instead prefer to buy the album online, the album is available on CDbaby, Snocap and iTunes. - Examiner.com


"Show Review @ DC9 (Washington DC)"

http://www.districtofsound.com/archive/its-official.html

Another veteran of DC9, Temporary Basement needed only to strike the opening chords for their first song before they instantly transitioned the crowd into a power pop rock set. Playing a mix of original songs, including those from their latest album—Interim, the band showed that they are not just a one hit wonder. New songs such as “Badfriend” and “Holdover” highlighted their musical abilities and versatility. Mixed in with the catchy hooks and toe-tapping beats they stayed true to their own sound while avoiding the pitfalls of sounding over produced or manufactured. The guys from Temporary Basement even had a few stage jumps and antics for good measure and the audience loved every minute of it. - DistrictOfSound.com


"Interim Review 1"

Around the same time we did a Past, Present, Future interview with Temporary Basement, lead singer Mike Favila passed along their third release Interim. As I am notoriously slow to review records, it has taken all this time for me to prepare this post. However, during that span of time, the tracks were in constant rotation in my iTunes library. Simply put, Interim is a solid release from a veteran band. At it’s core, the trio from Virginia fits with power-pop and alternative sounds of the ’90s. The instrumentation is distortion-rich while the lead vocals exude an odd John Popper meets Dryden Mitchell (of Alien Ant Farm) feel.

Interim Cover Art

Interim begins with a straightforward rock song, “Badfriend”. The thing that sets the song, and Temporary Basement in general, apart from the rock/power-pop masses is the vocal offering from Mike Favila. At times, the vocals soar above the melody, at others they fit right into the rhythm. The next track, “Rescind”, shows a little more of the band’s range, and a strong Weezer influence. The instrumentation becomes varied and more sparse; listen to the insteresting background percussion from Emil Favila. Especially catchy is the lyric “All I want from you, are the parts that you choose.”

“If You Ask” slows things down a bit and introduces a bass-forward front and backing vocals. The interplay of the distorted guitar chords with the soft vocals and strong bassline make this one of the standout tracks. The lyrics strike a common theme with the rest of album (and it is an album, in the truest sense of the concept): a theme of longing, love, and loss. Of particular note is the hooky chorus of “Hallways”: “I want to - unable - to show you, I’m stable! The sixth track, “Holdover”, has a decidedly “Please don’t take my sunshine away” chorus. It’s a cool take on the song; I’d be interested to know if it was on purpose.

Temporary BasementThe back half of the album holds two very notable tracks. The first is “Spies”, a dark surf rock song that has a very cool extended intro. In fact, the instrumentation on the first minute of the song is such a shift, that it would have been interesting to make the song an instrumental. The trio seemed to have that in mind, as the lyrics are quick and sparse which puts the instruments up front and center. This song, along with “Laguna Beach” gets me moving.
The aforementioned “Laguna Beach”, the final track on the album is, by far, my favorite. TB knew this was a strong song, but did not move it up in the lineup due to its age. Mike explained that Interim is an album of new material in a particular order. “Laguna Beach” has been around for a while and although they wanted to include it on the album, the focus was on the 10 songs that come before it. As it stands, it’s a great bonus track and one worth sticking around for.

The strong basslines and distorted guitars lead the listener on a consistent tour of Temporary Basement. The sound put forward toward the beginning of the album is what you can expect throughout. Rarely does the band step outside of the sound it’s fashioned from the combination of 90’s alternative, emo, and reggae, and it doesn’t need to. The vocal style is different enough to set it apart, even if the song structure and instrumentation seems, at times, recycled.

Pick up the CD on iTunes or CD Baby and check out Temporary Basement on the east coast this summer.
- TwoGroove


"Interim Review 2"

Maybe you've already perused our "Interview" section. Perhaps you even attended our launch party at DC9. If you have, you've most likely come in contact with the guys from Temporary Basement. The trio from VA were good enough to hand us a copy of their newest release, Interim.

Having personally seen them live a couple times, I can certainly attest to their live presence on stage. But as most of us know, sometimes live energy has trouble transferring from stage to your personal CD player, iPod, phonograph, etc. Temporary Basement can check this as a problem they do not have. The album restates exactly what their live show shouts: these guys truly enjoy rocking out!

The album is filled with a mix of 90's grungy, power pop that may recall hints of the oldest Weezer albums (the whoa-whoas on "Driving"), to 80's-ish synths, while wailing about everything from lying to old friends at high school reunions, to un-pursued office cubicle romance. With lots of live shows lined up, they'll be in your neck of the woods very soon. Interim is available online, so you don't even have to move your butt from the seat you're in right now. (cdbaby.com and on iTunes)

Interim stand outs:

* "Badfriend"
* "If You Ask"
* "Driving" - District Of Sound


"Subscribing To My Youth Review 1"

by Jessika Brune

"Emotional rock in the vein of No Knife. It grows on you."

Temporary Basement is a powerful rock band from Virginia, textured by duel vocals and guitar drive. They grew on me pure and simple. Although I did not fall in love with them, after several listens I found quite a few beautiful melodies hidden in each track. The styles were different, but at first I thought the singer had to be the same guy from San Francisco's Eleventeen. Both bands' vocals are not the kind you hear everyday so they immediately stick out. It's a very throaty, pushing, sort of constricted voice. It can seem whiney or strained, but it sounds great that way. It is very close to that of Talk, Talk or Marillion from the 80's.

The band uses excellent guitar work reminiscent of No Knife; however, I will admit the violin on the fifth track made the song more disturbing to me then enjoyable. Perhaps that was the intention, I'm not sure. Usually I love violin and harmonicas at all times, unless, like in this song, they are shrieking in a sort of strong and powerful scream. The song in itself is very powerful and aggressive in a non-hardcore way. It is just one of the more intense of the LP.

There is sometimes just too much circus noise with what appears to be xylophones and other tinkering within some songs. It's not often, but take for instance "Trapped Between Two Moments." I loved the opening, and as the song progressed it became to noisy for me. The use of instruments outside the usual drums, bass, and guitar is always a bonus, and that does add to Temporary Basement's sound in a lot of ways. It just isn't always that pleasant. For instance, the piano in the following track rocks, but it again has that stressing disturbing feel that is beneficial in the sound and mood of the song.

Temporary Basement has collectively gathered a great mix of up-beat pop-riddled songs with more serious intense sounds to create an over-all quality CD. The message in the artwork throughout as well as the majority of lyrics is rekindling youth and the happiness of younger days. The title Subscribing to My Youth is a fitting one. The band gives the impression that a live show would carry the same powerful intensity and maybe a little less noise. Subscribing to My Youth is not my favorite CD of the year, but as I said it has grown on me immensely from the time I received it, and there is no telling where it could rank by the end of 2002 if it continues to climb. There seems to be an unveiling of more greatness with every rotation. - Delusions of Adequacy


"Subscribing To My Youth Review 2"

by Jeanette Samyn.

Temporary Basement has been building up its popularity on the NOVA/DC scene since 1998. The band’s latest album, Subscribing To My Youth, is their newest and third release. Although it's sound is power pop more than anything else, Temporary Basement also seems to subscribe to a number of other different genres including punk (like parts of “Maybe I”) and reggae (like parts of “Keep Breathing”).

I could compare the band to, among many, many others, Saves the Day, OAR, Actual Tigers, Jimmy Eat World, Counting Crows, and the droves of other bands I just can’t place exactly. Temporary Basement sounds like Very Emergency-era Promise Ring, Saves the Day, and the Counting Crows, along with a slew of other bands all playing together in harmony, often playing more technical parts than any of the three mentioned would actually play, and often sounding very young in a very charming sort of way.

The band is sometimes “young-sounding” in a couple of ways, like with their hand clapping (used really, really well in “Four Minutes,” among other songs), and lyrics often about high school (“I go outside/ My yellow ride/ front of the steps/ I grit my teeth/ Clench my fist and close my eyes but nothing, I’m still here/ I go outside/ I take my time!/ I don’t want to go to school today!”). But hey, with an album entitled Subscribing To My Youth, what would you expect? Other times Mike Favila sings about things that are more “adult” with lyrics like “I thought that we’d passed that lying stage/ Instead you keep acting half your age/ End up staying home, sneak quietly/ smell of his cologne, you lied to me/ And swore to me you had work so late/ You couldn’t be home at ten past 8.” With this album, the members of Temporary Basement seem to be trying to compare their past to their present, documenting and remembering the emotions of their youth for us while still telling us something about what they’re feeling right now. And it sounds good.
- Lost At Sea


"Subscribing To My Youth Review 3"

by Catherine Nicholas.

There seems to be a steady stream of reminiscent rock albums recently – those that carry the theme of reflection on childhood or adolescent experiences. The latest effort from Washington DC’s Temporary Basement, Subscribing to My Youth, is one such album. Complete with an album sleeve that sports baby pictures of the band, this disc is a collection of memories about growing up, set to a power pop/ punk/ emo/ sometimes screamo sound.

After re-examining what I wrote above, it occurred to me that if I were reading this review, I might place Temporary Basement in a category with Blink 182 – don’t do that. The music on this album has noteworthy substance and depth for such a young band. The songwriting is thoughtful, the lyrics are endearingly heart-on-sleeve, and the production is clean. Subscribing to My Youth is the third album by Temporary Basement, and while the band members are all still barely out of high school and college, their music comes across as surprisingly refined, particularly for a band that could be placed in the pop punk category.

Lead vocalist, Mike Favila has a husky but melodic voice that is akin to that of the lead singer of another great DC band preceding Temporary Basement – Emmett Swimming. It’s one of those distinct voices that grows on you with each listen.

Track eight, “First Time Home” stands out for showing the band’s energetic approach to power pop, even incorporating a xylophone; this one smells like a single. (You can hear “First Time Home” on Left Off The Dial Radio.) On the disc’s closer, “Yearbook,” drummer Emil Favila takes on the role of lead singer, and the track ends up resembling a long-lost Weezer B-side.

The only negative remark I have about this disc is that a few of the songs tend to come from the immediately gratifying, guilty pleasure school of pop punk. This could indicate that some of these songs might not stand the test of time. But who really cares? This is a super-fun CD, full of catchy songs. Check it out. - Left Off The Dial


"TBCD Review 1"

by Jim Santo.

Listening to Temporary Basement is unavoidably bittersweet once you learn that vocalist/guitarist Kevan Carl Ulsaker died in July 1998. Victim of a drunken boater, he met his tragic end a scant two months after graduating high school and just two days after recording his vocals on the debut LP of the band he'd been with four years.

Happily, his mates have produced a worthy testament. Temporary Basement is a bracing blast of beach-punk and indie-pop, played from the heart and sprinkled with super songs like "Laguna Beach," "Someone Like You" and "Rosemary's Baby." Rough around the edges, to be sure, but fun trumps perfection every time. Kevan would be proud, I'm sure. - Demo Universe


"TBCD Review 2"

by Mike C.

If the sound of this band was a bottle, it would be teetering on the top of your head while you stood on one foot. The gritty guitars, lurching drums and bass push forward as the thick-voiced lyricist strains to hit the mark on this mid-tempo Power Pop rockers. The piano buried in the background adds a nice touch. - Listen.com


Discography

Interim (2008)

Subscribing To My Youth (2002)

TBCD (1998)

Here You Me! (1997) - benefit compilation featuring Weezer, That Dog, Beck, Ozma.

Photos

Bio

Temporary Basement have just released their newest CD, Interim. The lyrics range from the uncertainty of growing up and not feeling absorbed, to the fight to keep in touch of your friends and yourself (Badfriend), failed connections and longing (If You Ask), and of promises finally kept (Rescind). The music of the record varies as well. Hallways is a balance between the tense and angular guitars of Fugazi and the sweetness of Oasis. Fluster fuses Emil's skittery raggae beat with a flamenco style outro. David's baritone singing and fluid bass playing adds a fresh outlook to familiar live staples such as Yearbook and Laguna Beach. Mike's high and instantly recognizable voice remains on display on songs like Holdover.

Temporary Basement plays tight, intense and passionate shows that reflect their love for the music. Temporary Basement have played numerous venues up and down the East Coast including: CBGBs (NYC), Fort Reno (DC), Jammin Java (Arlington), Rock + Roll Hotel (DC), Automata Chino (NJ), the Annex (NYC) and Canal Club (Richmond).

Additional songs are available at: www.myspace.com/temporarybasement