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Sunny Day Real Estate Prepare To Celebrate ‘Diary’

Sunny Day Real Estate
Sunny Day Real Estate (Credit: Courtesy of UTA)

Sunny Day Real Estate are just days away from beginning a 30th anniversary tour in support of their Sub Pop debut album, Diary, during which they will perform the hugely influential LP in its entirety.

The tour begins Wednesday (March 13) in Lawrence, Ks., and includes a special Spin day party event on the afternoon of March 16 in Austin, Tx. Numerous shows are sold out, leading to the addition of second nights in cities such as New York and Los Angeles. Sunny Day will also play three times at The Showbox in their Seattle hometown. Click here for tour ticket information.

Sunny Day Real Estate features original members Jeremy Enigk (vocals/guitar), Dan Hoerner (guitar/vocals) and William Goldsmith (drums). The live lineup is rounded out by bassist Chris Jordan, while multi-instrumentalists Greg Suran and Jason Narducy will alternate at various points during the itinerary.

In celebration of the tour, Sunny Day have recorded a live-in-the-studio, song-for-song rendition of Diary at Seattle’s famed London Bridge Studios. It will be released digitally and in a limited vinyl run of 3,000 copies on May 3, and vinyl will also be available at the upcoming shows. Click here to pre-order.

The original concept for the Diary re-record was to track it at the Hoerner-owned Spokane, Wash., venue the Big Dipper when it was empty and afterwards finish it in a proper studio. Instead, the group completed the project entirely at London Bridge, where beloved grunge-era albums from fellow Seattle bands such as Pearl Jam’s Ten and Temple of the Dog’s self-titled debut were put to tape. It’s technically SDRE’s first album since 2000’s The Rising Tide, after which the band broke up for another eight years.

And although Diary tracks such as “In Circles,” “Seven,” “Song About an Angel” and “48” have been staples of SDRE shows for 30 years, many have rarely been performed in concert, including “9” (only four times) and “Round” (three). “We found ways to open up every song and add expansive elements to them,” Hoerner told Spin of the modern-day take on the project. “It’s going to be a whole new album.”

Spin previously named Diary as one of the 15 most influential albums of all time: “[it] tempered hardcore’s jagged rhythms with indie-rock guitar swirl while singer Jeremy Enigk (a world-class screamer who knew when to dial it down) confessed the black-hoodie blues, providing sensitive high-schoolers with yearbook quotes for days.”

It was later ranked No. 155 in Spin’s 300 Best Albums of 1985-2014: “Everyone can feel the tug of ‘I wanted to be them / But instead destroyed myself’ ripping through the otherwise cloudy ‘Grendel.’ Diary‘s one of the all-time best-fitted titles – with all the cathartic sloppy handwriting and jagged moments of clarity it implies. And thereupon lies their greatest trick, which helped them reach so many microscenes in the dial-up era: channeling anguish into victory.”

Diary – (Live at London Bridge Studio) sports a live-in-the-studio take on Sunny Day’s first new song in a decade, “Novum Vetus,” the studio version of which was released digitally in January. The seven-minute epic is based around an unfinished piece of music from a brief period in 1997 when original bassist Nate Mendel was considering rejoining the band during work on what became the following year’s How It Feels To Be Something On.

“I don’t really know why we shelved the song,” Enigk admits to Spin. “William and I over the years would talk about the magic of the guitar riff on the end part mixed with Nate’s bass, and how it would be cool to do something with it. It was probably one of the first we experimented with Nate on the bass for How It Feels. His bass line was so great – it made the song for me. Perhaps we felt doing the song without that element wouldn’t be the same, since he’d decided he couldn’t do the band full time. Plus, there were other songs to contend with the sea shanty vibe it has, like ‘Guitar and Video Games.’

“As we reunited, I started going through old recordings in my very disheveled archives and found a file that said ‘SDRE_97.mp3,’” Enigk continues. “We had recorded a demo of it and it didn’t sound bad at all. All the parts were nearly there, including half the lyrics. We were already talking about recording Diary Live for the 30th anniversary, and William and Dan really pushed the idea of rehearsing the song for fun as we rehearsed for prior tours – all in their master plan to finish it and record it when we went into the studio for Diary Live. Chris Jordan nailed the original feel of the bass line and improved upon it. Greg Suran played guitar and it instantly raised in polish and quality. We are definitely looking forward to playing it on the upcoming shows for the Diary 30th anniversary!”

The band’s only other new song since the early 2000s, “Lipton Witch,” has been featured in the set list since Sunny Day reunited in 2022 after a 12-year break.

Here are Sunny Day Real Estate’s Diary 30th Anniversary tour dates:

March 13: Lawrence, Ks. (Liberty Hall)
March 14: Oklahoma City (Beer City Music Hall)
March 16: Austin, Tx. (Stubb’s / Spin event)
May 1: Raleigh, N.C. (Lincoln Theatre) SOLD OUT
May 3: Gainesville, Fl. (High Dive) SOLD OUT
May 4: Atlanta (Shaky Knees Music Festival)
May 7: Washington, D.C. (Howard Theatre)
May 9: Philadelphia (Theatre of Living Arts) SOLD OUT
May 10: Philadelphia (Theatre of Living Arts)
May 12: Boston (Big Night Live)
May 15: New York (Irving Plaza) SOLD OUT
May 16: New York (Irving Plaza)
Aug. 14: Dallas (Echo Lounge)
Aug. 17: Denver (Summit)
Aug. 20: Seattle (Showbox) SOLD OUT
Aug. 21: Portland, Or. (Pioneer Square / PDX Live Series)
Aug. 23: Seattle (Showbox) SOLD OUT
Aug. 24: Seattle (Showbox)
Sept. 25: Chicago (House of Blues)
Sept. 28: Minneapolis (Fillmore)
Oct. 11-13: Las Vegas (Best Friends Forever Festival)
Oct. 15: San Francisco (August Hall)
Oct. 18: Los Angeles (Belasco) SOLD OUT
Oct. 19: Los Angeles (Belasco)

Sunny Day Real Estate Diary tour