REVIEW: Basement – “I Wish I Could Stay Here”

Basement / I Wish I Could Stay Here / Run For Cover

Cut from the same torn cloth as label mates Title Fight and alt punk revolutionists Such Gold and Balance And Composure, the five guys that make up Basement stand by the truth they’re influenced by “slow and sad music”. The “emo” tags stapled to the English outfit should be removed however, as the ten tracks crafted from precision and hardcore punk angst that make up their debut tell something different. The band has scarred I Wish I Could Stay Here with deafening songwriting, twisting a strained voice around a foundation constructed of everything from lonely 90s’ garage chords (“March”) to blistering punk sprints (“Plan To Be Surprised”, “Fading”) that don’t stray too far away from Basement’s love affair with more melancholy subject matter. It’s that focus that gives the disc more lasting-value than it should have.

It also outlines frontman Andrew Fisher as a lyricist worth paying attention to as though his voice becomes colourless in certain sections, his words torment a listener’s attention in the same way they imply specific emotions. The latter half of I Wish I Could Stay Here thrives on that with wrapping a rather sensitive instrumental bit around your neck with “Elipses” and flashing sharp rhythmic skills on “Grayscale”. Even when sleepy fretwork invades, Fisher shows experience kickstarting Basement’s original sound (“Earl Grey”) and not shying from conversing in such a personal way that lines like, “I will wait for you, just like you knew I would”, sketch a chapter of your life you can’t help but revisit sometimes. The record isn’t immediately unforgettable, but the way each set of lyrics flicker- with help from the group’s desire to be authentic – hits home, and practically maims you after a second listen.

Download: “Earl Grey”, “Plan To Be Surprised”, “Fading”


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