Hot Hot Heat formed in 1999 around keyboardist/vocalist Steve Bays, starting out as a synth punk outfit in Victoria, British Columbia. Drummer Paul Hawley and bassist Dustin Hawthorne formed the group's backbone through this period (the fruits of which can be heard on Scenes One Through Thirteen), but things changed for Hot Hot Heat when guitarist Dante DeCaro joined in early 2001, at which point they dropped the synths and moved towards a more stripped down rock 'n' roll -- if persistently pop -- sound. "We've basically brought together four categories of influences: classic Beatles and Stones; punk-rock; the whole singer/songwriter era, and anything contemporary worth listening to," explains Bays. This change of direction was followed by the release of debut EP Knock Knock Knock on Sub Pop in 2002 and, later the same year, LP Make Up The Breakdown, produced by Jack Endino (the knob-twiddler on Nirvana's Bleach). Shortly after the album's release, the band signed with Warner Music. In 2004, having completed the recording of their second album proper, Elevator, DeCaro left Hot Hot Heat to be replaced by Luke Paquina, formerly of San Francisco's the Stradlers. The band went on to release Happiness LTD. in 2007.