Blitz Radio host, Will Clifton, recently had the opportunity to talk with Alex Bleeker, the bassist for Real Estate. Real Estate is coming to Australia in July to play their recently released 4th studio album, In Mind. Alex was a super chill and cool guy. If you haven’t already, give these guys a listen.
Would you mind giving us a quick run-down on who Real Estate, the band, is?
Real Estate is a band that has been a band since 2008. A band of brothers in a way, friends bound together by music with a mutual love and respect for one another. I don’t know man, we’re just a band!
Do you think growing up in the woods and rolling hills of New Jersey helped shape your sound?
Yeah I think so, definitely early on, you know, with us coming together in a lot of ways. For us, we had gone away to college, had come back to our hometown afterwards and a lot of the subject matter and sound was initially born out of that head space. So being a part of that surrounding was definitely big for us.
I thought Real Estate could be from the south of the US because of the lyrics in the song “Beach Comber,” and Martin Courtney’s (lead singer) mention of Pensacola.
That’s cool, yeah actually I don’t think he had ever even been to Pensacola when he wrote that line. We did have a really great show in Pensacola one time. Yeah it was awesome! A bunch of kids threw a party in like an old school garage.
I had a few friends at your show in Birmingham and they said there were tornadoes – what happened with all of that?
It was the first day of the tour and we all flew in through Atlanta. There was severe weather and we almost all didn’t make it there. It was a crazy thing. We all had to rent cars and drive over and our bags were lost for 5 days but we all made it in time.
You’re playing at Splendour in the Grass in Australia, right?
Yeah we are. Have you ever been to it? I heard it’s pretty big.
Ah no I haven’t, I actually leave right to go home to the states right before Splendour!
Ah that’s a bummer man!
It’s alright. There were rumours that Real Estate were broken up for good, with members focusing on other projects. Do you think the focus on side projects created a different feeling or sound for the new album?
Honestly, we’ve always done that. From the very beginning, we’ve always had those extra projects, so it hasn’t really changed any of the sound for me. I don’t know, that kind of seems to me like the reason we never broke up, you know? It allows us to pursue other individual interests and go down other pathways. It’s a pretty integral part of our process.
I think that’s [rumours of breakup] maybe because Martin put out a solo record so there’s been a lot of media around that.
What’s your favourite song from “In Mind?”
It changes a lot, but right now I like “Same Sun.” It’s a sort of poppy song but the structure of it is interesting.
How do you feel about the Australian fan base?
They’re awesome! I love coming to Australia and am really stoked to come back. They’re cool and there’s great culture, it’s really beautiful so I’m always happy to go there for tour.
What’s a typical jam session like for Real Estate?
I don’t know how to answer that (laughs). We all live in different places now so we do a lot of sending tracks to each other and recording like that. We’ve played together for a long time and we have good energy together.
You’re the bass player for Real Estate, but what do you do in your band Alex Bleeker and the Freaks?
Well, I play the guitar and I sing, play and arrange music. I started out as the driving force behind that band but now it has evolved into more of a five person collaboration.
Well I think we’re about out of time, so thank you for talking to me. Hopefully I’ll get to see you guys soon!
Right on, man! If you ever see us say hello. Take it easy dude.
You can catch Real Estate performing at Sydney’s Metro Theatre on Thursday 27th July. Tickets available here.
By Will Clifton