Generally favorable reviews - based on 10 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. They mix in a little cool, fuzzy ambiance ("Papers"), a bit of throb and feedback ("Ultraviolent Men"), and some soul infusion ("How Could You") for a wonderfully spacious, energetic album that belongs right beside any of the others that may have influenced The M's.
  2. Following their first two crunching and careening albums, it may seem as if the M's have lowered the bar for themselves, but through all the detours they've made an album that sounds more like themselves than any previous work.
  3. Real Close Ones will likely leave listeners dumbfounded, but the album should nonetheless be lauded for its break from convention.
  4. There may be no new ground broken here, but The M’s excel at neo-classicism in a simultaneously fun and serious manner. [Summer 2008]
  5. Modern touches aside, many of the songs fall somewhere between the Stones' "Exile on Main Street," minus the desperation, and the Kinks classics " Village Green Preservation Society" and "Muswell Hillbillies."
  6. Chicago’s favorite retro-pop indie quartet, the M’s take another serious step towards being a true career band with their third self-produced record and second for the always dependable Polyvinyl.
  7. On Real Close Ones, the M’s sound like a slightly older version of the band that made their first album. Sure they’re really good, but they're too pensive to make the step up to the big leagues.
  8. The more mature and considered approach the band utilizes on Real Close Ones might make for a deeper, more adult sound, but it's hard not to miss the careening thrill ride the band delivered on "Future Women."
  9. 60
    Things go slightly south with wedged-in jokes, but if you overlook those interruptions there's enough fuzzed-out fun and tender, Shins-like classicism to transcend any retro trappings. [July 2008, p.100]
  10. On Real Close Ones, the M’s employ an almost damning method of over-layering their sound that reaches every corner of its existence, drowning each song in a sonic blanket of glowing fuzz.

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