Independent rockers Real Estate look back on career-defining album “Days”

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Several years ago, Real Estate bassist and singer Alex Bleeker was playing his guitar in bed and started falling asleep. “Then something shook me, and I was like, ‘Wait, that’s pretty cool. I’m going to record this, ”Bleeker said over the phone recently.

The guitar riff demo remained in the form of a GarageBand file titled “D +” (named after the key of the song) for a while, not finding a lyrical focus until January 20, 2017. “I wrote. all the lyrics the same day. of the inauguration of Donald Trump, which I was not very enthusiastic about, ”said Bleeker. “I was in this dark, anxious state of mind, quietly watching this terrible inauguration on my computer, and those words all poured out.”

“It’s a red letter day, let the orchestra play / Before they take you away, the ship sinks,” sings Bleeker on the ominous track, which retained the title “D +” as an appropriate double meaning.

The song is featured on the recent release of Real Estate Half human, an EP of material from the sessions of the 2020 album The main thing. Initially, Bleeker and his band mates planned to hold onto the songs for the future in full, but after the pandemic hit, all of the Before Times material felt too distant to fold into a new album. “We decided that the paradigm of life had just changed too drastically to do so,” Bleeker said. “We wanted to start over. … Too much has changed.

But before Real Estate moves on to the next record, the longtime indie rock band from New Jersey stops by to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Days, arguably his most beloved album. In a recent series of shows, including a stop at Skully’s on Saturday, November 13, the group will perform Daysfoggy and cold track list back and forth.

“I haven’t forgotten the songs because I play them all the time live, but I’m kind of separated from the record. Putting it back in place was deeply nostalgic, and I thought, “Oh, that sounds good. It holds up, ”Bleeker said, noting that the album evokes a certain moment in his life, much like favorite albums often do for listeners. “It reminds me of specific life experiences: where I was, who I dated, what I did, how it changed my life.”

In many ways, Days’ success made Real Estate the group it is today, separating the group from the flash-in-the-pan blogging groups of the time. “When you put out a record and it’s well received, it’s an amazing feeling,” Bleeker said. “I can tie the album cycle of this record to why I’m still talking to you on the phone right now, so it will always make sense to me that way.”

And while Bleeker and his band mates are proud of their most recent releases and grateful to the fans who have stayed with them for the past 10+ years, Bleeker knows there is something different about Days. “It’s a special event for a lot of people, and I think it’s cool, actually. … I feel lucky that we even have a record like this worth celebrating 10 years later, and people care to celebrate it.

The anniversary also comes at a time when, until this latest tour, Real Estate had not performed for fans since a series of sidewalk shows outside the addresses of former New York record stores in March 2020. , just days before the lockout orders were placed. outside. Despite the lingering effects of the pandemic, with the masked spectators and the calculated risks to the performers and participants of the rock show, Bleeker said the experience on stage was incredible. “It’s really cathartic to be in the room with people,” he said. “I’m more excited and excited about this than I have been in a long time.”


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