words & photos by Andrew Frisciano
Real Estate and The Babies (formerly "Babies"?) played the third "Fader Bowl," a series of free monthly shows at Brooklyn Bowl, last night (Tuesday, January 5th). The gig was a a victory lap of sorts for Real Estate, who had a huge 2009 (which frontman Martin Courtney reminisced on to BV). They managed to fill up the sizable space with both familiar and curious faces. The Jersey (or Jersey Shore-loving) contingent was strong - mentions of both the state and the show drew roars from the crowd. Real Estate's "singles," like the upbeat "Beach Comber," fit nicely into the headlining set that also included a new song and plenty of album cuts. Longish, laconic "Suburban Beverage" dragged late in the set, but by "Fake Blues" (probably their best) they were back on point - they even managed to sneak in an encore.
The Babies opened strong with a two-vocal approach that didn't skimp on pop hooks or atmosphere. I felt slightly guilty for not catching them at either of their more intimate shows the day before and tonight, but the tight BK Bowl set established Babies as a band approaching or on par with its members' full-time gigs. It was over too quickly - hopefully the Babies have more to come soon.
The last of the Babies' three-night run is tonight (1/6) at Glasslands with Beach Fossils, Total Slacker, The Sundelles and True Womanhood. Real Estate go on to play Philly, tour Europe and, in March, travel across North America with Woods (Kevin from Babies plays bass in Woods). The Woods/Real Estate tour kicks off with a hometow show at MHOW on March 12th. the Bitters open. Tickets are still on sale.
More pictures are below...