Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

A selection of song titles from Real Estate’s self-titled debut: “Beach Comber,” “Atlantic City,” “Let’s Rock The Beach.” The seashore motif may be having a cultural moment, at least among the Brooklyn DIY scene in which the band cut its teeth. (See also acts like Boogie Boarder and Beach Fossils, not to mention associated out-of-towners like Surf City and Surfer Blood.) But Real Estate does the titles good, making dreamy, evocative indie-pop that’s swathed in echoes, relentlessly chill, and hazy as a summer day. Unfortunately, that’s also where the trouble starts. Real Estate is thin: light on dynamics, drowning in reverb, casually recorded, and mostly unadorned. These songs are blueprints for bigger, more complete ones. Opener “Beach Comber” is an underwater ramble that works on its own, but more frequent are tracks like “Fake Blues,” which is really fake Walkmen, and “Suburban Beverage,” a six-minute strummer’s delight that’s hardly a complete composition. Real Estate's rise—relative rise, anyway, but significant by the measure of certain indie precincts—has been swift; it’s worth wondering if a little more time would have helped fill out this album.


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