Matthew Mondanile, formally known as Ducktails, is having quite the year for himself. First, in January he releases the highly praised III: Arcade Dynamics as Ducktails, and then turns around in October and drops debatably the album of the year with Real Estate’s second full length LP Days. This is Mondanile’s third album as Ducktails, and it’s simply a beautiful, unpolished collection of soothing ballads with catchy guitar riffs and instrumental compositions that have almost an intentional unfinished feel to them. Breaking away from Real Estate’s more refined and clean sound, Mondanile uses blurry chord progressions and dubbed vocals to create relaxing tracks that would be perfect for any mixtape or road trip. The album is fairly consistent through and through, but one track that stands out is “Hamilton Road,” which blends Mondanile’s catchy riff ability with lyrics that invoke feelings of nostalgia for childhood and summer. Another is “Killin the Vibes,” in which Panda Bear makes an appearance and adds a nice harmonious background that pairs perfectly with Mondanile’s gentle voice. The same way the album fades in smoothly with only guitar, bass, minimal drums, and a tambourine, the album fades out with “Porch Projector,” a ten minute guitar solo with fire works drowning out in the background.
With the immediate success and warm reception of Real Estate’s new album Days debuting at #52 on the Billboard just one week ago, it might be some time before Mondanile gets time to work on his own music again. So in the meantime, enjoy this album and be sure to catch Real Estate on tour. Unfortunately, the closest show this year will be at Johnny Brenda’s in Philadelphia on November 21st or at the Bowery Ballroom in NYC on November 23, but its probably worth the trip.