Words by Sean Walsh

Real Estate is a band whose name I always found peculiar; In no way shape or form is their sound or style for sale, or even open for a bid. Maybe they aren’t the first group of musicians to write breezy-ballad-style indie tunes, good for cruising down a desert highway, or for sitting alone contemplating the universe as thin rain drops blanket the window of your Brooklyn attic, but they’ve captured something extraordinary. These are the sounds of New Jersey, capturing the past-present-and future states of the aesthetically-appetizing trends and troubles that transcend a particular era and becomes “uniquely timeless.”

Real Estate’s first album in 3 years, Atlas is set to drop March 4th on Domino (who have been steadily increasing their roster of impressive artists) and aims to be a “cleaner, more well-rehearsed record that reflected the way [they’ve] come together as a live band over the last few years,” as guitarist Martin Courtney exclaimed. This of course is in regards to their last full length release, 2011’s fantastic Days.

Atlas tells a story – the story of open roads of freedom; nostalgic thoughts of childhood summer days previously spent in the hanging haze of the sun; the hurt of loneliness and heartache; the beauty of warm friendships and late night drives; the value of a good home and growing up in a positive and encouraging environment. Laying the foundations for future conquests, revelations, and successes, this is the refined soundtrack to growing-up. Purely-warm. American. Melancholia.

This is a perfect addition to their already impressive-yet limited catalog. “Graceful, precise-musicianship” really makes this album the American classic it deserves to be. It’s like a classic-collector’s car. It’s like playing catching outside with your dad before Mom puts supper on the table. It’s like driving to the beach with your roof off and the music blasting. It’s like embracing who you are, who you were, and who you eventually will come to be.

I cant help but think of video segments from something out of a show like The Wonder Years…the imagery is laced with a montage of clips, filtered in 1970’s, showcasing things like family barbecues, a son’s first car and a son’s first crash, a daughter’s wedding, a family who loves, who forgives, and who moves on down the road as the car gasses forward.

It is the remembrance of a monument, whose vivid imagery is now slave to the sands of time, left to explore, grow, and create its own purpose for the future; an exploration of the simple and the complex and how they can still coalesce in today’s progressing world: A true audio ‘atlas’ of where they’ve been and where they plan to go.

Real Estate
Domino Records
© March 4th, 2014



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