Jukebox the Ghost – Safe Travels

January 01, 1970

(Yep Roc)




It’s hard to
believe that this Northeast trio of Ben Thornewell (vocals/piano/accordion),
Tommy Siegel (guitar/vocals) and Jesse Kristin (drums), who are currently
calling NYC home after a stint in Philly (and who met at DC’s George Washington
University), have been around for nearly a decade now, but indeed they have. Safe Travels is their third full-length
(second for the Yep Roc label) and it’s just as whimsical and good-timey as the
first two. The band has been on to something since their 2008 debut Let Live & Let Ghosts. They refined
the sound on 2010’s Everything Under the
and the thirteen songs on the new record seem to bring it all together.


They waste no
time jumping right into things on the bouncy “Somebody” (like if Weezer were a
bit more funky) then dive head first into “Oh, Emily,” which sounds like any
other normal, quirky pop song, but then swirls into a bit of cacophony by songs
end (in the best way possible). They delve into a bit of cheese on “At Last”
(Billy Joel, anyone?), but make up for it on the “Say When” which starts with
an Aerosmith drum beat but then gets all Talking Heads on us (but a much more normal Talking Heads), They show a
moodier side on “Dead” and then bring it all back home again on the terrific
“Adulthood’ (like Ben Folds if Ben Folds was….uhh….better) and the soaring (and even better) “Ghosts in Empty Houses.”


Jukebox the
Ghost proudly wear its pop influences on their sleeves and quite frankly don’t
care whether you like those influences or not. 


DOWNLOAD: “Somebody,” “Say When,” “Adulthood,”
“Ghosts in Empty Houses” TIM HINELY



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