Album Of The Week: Real Estate 'Days'

It should be no great surprise that we’re really into this record, considering that we’ve already heaped praise onto album tracks like “Green Aisles,” “Out Of Tune” and the magnificent “It’s Real” as well as took the temperature of the general reaction to Days in a Comment Party. But even if this is hammering home the point a little too zealously, it’s still worth teasing out why Real Estate’s Days is such a sharp, effective release for an outfit that not only somewhat begot an indie rock sonic trend, but crystallized the merits and emotional reach of that sound.

If you’ve been reading this site for a while, you’re most likely familiar with the charms of Real Estate’s self-titled debut, an opus of bummed-out odes to New Jersey suburbia and its corresponding nostalgia. That record’s popularity set the table for like minded outfits like Big Troubles and the sound was fertile enough to launch Real Estate spinoffs (Ducktails, Alex Bleeker and the Freaks) that didn’t sound like rehash. Those outfits certainly wade in the same sonic streams, a sound populated by reverby guitars and open-ended explorations of indie rock textures.

What makes Days so strong is, in a sense, subtle, but it’s also immediately clear from the opening notes of “Easy.” The songs on Days are crisper and more immediate without sacrificing Real Estate’s signature mellowness (best exhibited on songs like “Kinder Blumen” and “Younger Than Yesterday”). Though he’s a bit undersung, somehow, I can’t say enough about lead singer Martin Courtney’s strengths as a songwriter; Real Estate’s songs are imbued with a certain cohesiveness and thought that I don’t necessarily see in the related outfits, who are more wont to channel a groove or a vibe and ride it out.

There’s a lot to like about Days, as the record touches on the same universal moods that made their debut so striking. It’s the crispest and maturest thing Real Estate has done, to date, which makes it an easy pick for Album Of The Week.

Days is out now on Domino. The album is streaming at NPR.

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Comments (13)
  1. No, no no no no no no no no no. Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming.

  2. This is one of those albums you want to have by your side as you walk through the crunchy leaves and need some solace from the daylight being cut out in chunks with each passing day.

    For any cassette enthusiasts out there, Domino is selling Days on tape, a pretty fitting medium for this release.

  3. ddogdunit  |   Posted on Oct 18th, 2011 -5

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

  4. Um, this record is really good and all, but Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming is a no brainer.

    • People must really like “Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming” if 2 of the first 6 comments on a post about an unrelated album are about how “Hurry Up” is better. The comments on the year end best albums list will be interesting if it isn’t # 1. I would expect a lot of crying, name calling, and possibly some death threats. M83 has two shows in Chicago coming up that have been sold out for months, well before the album even leaked. Either they have really blown up, or I just didn’t realize quite how popular they were.

      BTW, both albums are really good, but very differnent and kind of tough to compare.

      • What’s that? This post is called album of the week and since both albums came out this week they are totally related and I’m an idiot?? My bad, please thumbs down me.

  5. Thinking that corbin is really Marc Masters from PF. He happened think almost the exact same thing today…

    • ddogdunit  |   Posted on Oct 18th, 2011 +1

      i think you might have stumbled on the see through hive mind of the bloggers, aka those paid off by daniel gill from forcefield. because how could this music honestly excite anyone enough to lavish praise on it like this? maybe i’m not this boring.

  6. Contrary to this thread, M83 and Real Estate are not in a steel cage death match or the movie Highlander. There can be more than one good record out this week. It’s not a zero sum game. If you love M83, try not to worry so much about a single post on a single site.

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