Review Summary: Real Estate, the readers digest condensed version
Unexpectedly, The Flower Lane
is more of a step into familiar territory for Matt Mondanile. And unfortunately, one can't help but escape the unabashed Real Estate imitation that bursts through the seams of his fourth proper release under the Ducktails moniker. Gone are the lo-fi, experimental psychedelic pop jams of previous efforts, and in their place are ten tracks that could quite easily be confused as the rejected B-side "Nights" to 2011's Days
. The real problem here isn't that we don't need more Real Estate (we do); the issue is that Mondanile's impressions come across as vapid and completely lacking in any production texture that could be expected in 2013. "Ivy Covered House" kicks things off with 60s surf-rock worship that doesn't conclude until "Academy Avenue" closes out the mediocre affair with a proper field-frolicking acoustic hippie jam. The Flower Lane
isn't terrible by any means; it is a faithful homage to a classic time in music history. It just lacks in a hallmark of all prior Ducktails releases: imagination.