At their biggest headlining show to date, Jukebox the Ghost wanted to get one thing out of the way fast (at least that’s my guess). The Brooklyn-based trio were performing at the vast Brooklyn Steel on May 16th, in support of their latest album Off to the Races, and fans were ready to sing along. Inevitably, at each of their shows, they face some sort of technical difficulty that interrupts the flow and this one was no different. During “Jumpstarted”, the first song on the new album and the first of the evening, one of Tommy Siegel’s pedals (or something) went out before his solo so the group backtracked to allow him to perform it in full.
It was Siegel’s favorite solo on the album he noted so he didn’t want to exclude it. And the extra bit of the song was much appreciated give Off to the Races is Jukebox the Ghost at their finest. The album is full of moments that are weird, wonky and wonderful, all at the same time. And I’ve found myself playing the album over and over again throughout the day. There is so much infectious energy in songs like “Colorful”, “People Go Home”, and “Fred Astaire” that I knew the band would make these songs a total smash to hear live.
Jukebox the Ghost (Siegel, drummer Jesse Kristin and keyboard-player / bassist for one song Ben Thornewill) played the entirety of the new record during the show. The band went from the off-kilter “Jumpstarted” to the strut of “Girl” (from their previous album) before dropping into “Boring”. A few songs later, the group performed my favorite sing-along from the new record “Simple as 1 2 3”, which was a clear favorite of many others who sang along and counted along on their hands with Thornewill.
Other notable moments throughout the set included Kristin adding Smash Mouth lyrics to the intro of “Hollywood” (his sole singing assignment in the entire Jukebox repertoire), Thornewill’s intro to “Time and I” during which he explained the chorus “Time and I / Don’t See Eye to Eye” came directly from his conversation with an elderly person and the plush horse crowdsurfing throughout “Schizophrenia”.
But it was the finale that was outstanding. The band lined up the dance friendly heavy-hitters “Fred Astaire”, “Colorful” and “Stay the Night” (a recent, non-album single). They then wrapped up with the send-off “See You Soon”, a sweet finale for a wonderful show. I can’t wait to see them again.
People Go Home
Simple As 1 2 3
Time and I
The Sun (Interlude)
Mr. Blue Sky (Electric Light Orchestra)
Stay The Night
See You Soon