FRONT ROW | REAL ESTATE @ METRO THEATRE
It was a surprisingly balmy winter’s night, and as we walked down to the Metro Theatre, there were people spilling out of packed bars, having Thursday night bevs and basking in the warmth. It was the perfect night to sway about to Real Estate, who have been back in Australia for the first time in two years to show off the jangles of their new album, In Mind.
The Metro filled up nicely and as the lights went down and the crowd roared, the five-piece band wandered onto stage and went straight to their instruments. Frontman Martin Courtney gave a soft ‘hello’ and they rolled into Stained Glass, a track from their latest album.
As the jangle of notes of one of Real Estate’s most popular new songs, Darling, were played the crowd began to bop from side to side. Bassist, Alex Bleeker, was definitely the sunbeam of the night. He seemed genuinely excited to be playing and smiling at the crowd. He also kept reiterating how excited they were to be back in Australia and was sipping on kombucha instead of a beer.
The sound quality of the performance was incredible. You could not hear a note or beat out of place – they sound just as they do on their records. Courtney’s vocals are pure and delicate, old-friend of members of the band but newbie to touring with them is Julian Lynch whose guitar playing is peaceful perfection, keyboardist Matt Kallman is a ray of sunshine (plus a fantastic multi tasker), drummer Jackson Pollis is in the zone (it pays off – no beat missed!) and bassist Alex Bleeker like I said before, just seems like a grade-A babe.
They dipped and flittered between all four albums, however the mellow, sweet sound of Real Estate is so classic that is more sounded like a easy segue between all tracks, than a display of differing albums.
Saturday was my favourite tune they played that night. Maybe it was the first pre-encore tune, so they were a bit more pepped up for it! The guitar solo made me melt and it was fun to see the boys zen out with their instruments. I think Real Estate’s work is the perfect slow Sunday morning/breakfast in bed music, so maybe it was just a little difficult to lose myself completely in the crowd as you more want to curl up in bed or lay in a sun-drenched field and daze off.
Eight years, five albums and many other solo projects later, Real Estate show no sign of slowing down and they continue to draw out the beauty in the cracks of the pavement and power lines swinging above our heads.