Sometimes all it takes is a little patience to turn an offhand idea into the song you know it has the potential to be. Other times it takes four years—such is the case with Eli Hansen and his now-five-piece Real Numbers and their newly unveiled track “Brighter Then,” which will kick off an EP of the same name due out early next year.
“It all started at our old rehearsal space, the basement of the now defunct DIY venue Coming Soon,” he shares. “It was late 2016 and we had finished recording Wordless Wonder and were having these very sporadic, unfocused practices, so I just started playing this riff over and over. The jam didn’t really go anywhere, but I knew this riff was special and deserved attention. Over the course of the following year I came up with an intro/outro and a vocal melody, culminating as a barely passable live version at a basement show in December 2017. After I finished the lyrics, Ian recorded a demo version of it in 2018 that sounded great, but also exposed some weak spots—like the key we’d been playing it in. We even made a couple changes to the bass and synth arrangements while recording this, the final version—and I tell ya, I think it’s perfect.”
The song will kick off the five-song EP due out January 22 on Slumberland Records, with a reprise of the single also closing out the record. Hear it below, set to some equally calming stop-motion imagery, and pre-order the EP here.