Real Estate - Real Estate

Generally favorable reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. Cynics be damned: however the hype machine happens to play this one out, Real Estate have overcome the critics and released one of the most refreshing, satisfying and richly rewarding albums of 2009.
  2. Despite the summery song titles and the beach balling associations that might follow these guys around, this music transcends the notion of seasons.
  3. For a band relatively new, Real Estate seems to understand what's within their grasp, and they attack it with a confidence that's pretty astonishing. [Holiday 2009, p.79]
  4. Real Estate is a remarkable debut, and I really look forward to more from this band in the future, please, which will undoubtedly be soon in some form or another.
  5. 80
    The lackadaisical nostalgia for childhood beach holidays is certainly evocative--as indeed, is the way Real Estate recall New Jersey Antecedents The Feelies and Yo La Tengo, plus any number of old Flying Nun bands. [Feb 2010, p.96]
  6. June. Though half of Real Estate was already released by the band as singles and EPs, that just adds to the album’s instantly familiar feel--which is a large part of this unassuming debut album’s appeal.
  7. Real Estate might not be the best classicist-leaning pop record of the year (that dubious honor goes to the more stylistically varied "Album," by Girls), but it certainly is the most confident, the most assured, and the most unassuming.
  8. The music, accordingly, is languorous and minor-key, the guitar work of Matt Mondanile chiming and tuneful in the manner of the Strokes. Nostalgia is carried along by the wind, along with the smell of salt water and hot pretzels.
  9. 78
    All of these bittersweet tracks are gloriously faint approximations of everyone's favorite seasonal affective disorder. [Holiday 2009, p. 93]
  10. Despite its short shelf life, Real Estate, if it hits you at the right time, can be splendidly transcendent.
  11. These ten songs are immaculately composed, proving that besides holding a pop motif that isn’t really revelatory, there’s enough variation to satisfy a few repeated listens.
  12. Singer Martin Courtney's mumble is barely audible, and it all sounds like it was recorded on a boombox in someone's mom's pool house, but the band gets a lot of mileage from a silvery sunbeam of inspiration.
  13. Real Estate is thin: light on dynamics, drowning in reverb, casually recorded, and mostly unadorned. These songs are blueprints for bigger, more complete ones.
  14. As Real Estate grinds on, it settles into a monotony of its own, until you can hardly distinguish one hazy nod-off jam from another.
  15. Real Estate’s sound is imbued with the same sentimentality as the rest of the indie class of 2009, but with zero ambition.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 21 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 0 out of 2
  1. Jun 10, 2012
    Even if the songs seem to be quiet harmless, this album is pretty impressive. How Real Estate creates beautiful melodies with two guitars and a bass without any sound effects, is incredibly awesome. One of my favourite albums and one of my favourite bands too. Full Review »
  2. JeffC
    Nov 23, 2009
    One of the best albums of the year, hands down. One of the few bands that can deliver equally in both their live performances and recorded content. Great to see that the critics agree. Full Review »