A touch of jingle and a splash of melancholy
Returning to the indie-pop scene, Minneapolis, Minnesota’s Real Numbers five-man trope, has released their upcoming EP Brighter Then. With an origin dating to about 2007, Real Numbers is comprised of Ian Nygaard, James Blackfield, with their singer and song-writer Eli Hansen and more recent members with Cameron Soojian on bass and Sophie Durbin on keyboards.
Real Numbers released their first official studio LP in 2014 with What Was & What Is, which was then followed up with Wordless Wonder, which attracted the bulk of their popularity and cult following. Brighter Then is jangly, like much of the rest of the quintuplet’s discography all around with a downturned somber emotion along with it and is worth raising the volume button to the max with a well-timed bedroom concert of one’s own accord.
Opening up the EP, Brighter Then begins, of course, its self-titled track “Brighter Then,” with chiming guitar strums and a stagnant repetitive drumline that makes for a steady melody with Hansen’s mellow tone vocals to soothe it along. As sharp as its uplifting guitar riffs, “Darling” hits afterward with reminiscent surf-rock-like energy that pronounces a melodrama atmosphere to its jingling rhythm and pace, an excellent head-banging melody to groove along to in long car rides and late afternoon jam outs.
With a rising energetic guitar strum focused intro, “Old Cross” is contradictorily somber as opposed to the provided guitar strums with its melancholy bass and drumline. It is also absent of Hansen’s coaxed vocals. Following suit is “In The End,” a matching dreary melody guides this tune with an ascendant and echoed position that almost resembles the awe of traveling through lush green woods and the smell of pine coming through the window on what seems to be a never-ending road to a long-awaited destination at the end. Closing the EP is a reprised version of “Brighter Then” that gives a more boosted loftiness than the opening version. This version is still equally as lighthearted with a more acoustic sound and an excellent melody to end them off on.
It’s been a few years since their last LP, but with Brighter Then arriving, it’s like a sigh of relief for fans of this act who have waited such a long time for new content. The EP is no less short of splendid and is sure to alleviate avid fans of Real Numbers.