Safe Travels (Bonus Track Version)

Safe Travels (Bonus Track Version)

There were some obvious nods to Ben Folds in Jukebox the Ghost’s debut album, 2008's Live and Let Ghosts, and his influence also seeped into the Brooklyn trio’s 2010 sophomore outing, Everything Under the Sun. Jukebox the Ghost's third album, Safe Travels, finds the trio honing its own sound. The androgynously gorgeous “Somebody” opens with multilayered falsettos before Ben Thornewill, Tommy Siegel, and Jesse Kristin fall back on their natural tenors to confidently croon a sunny indie tune that has more in common with Foster the People than Folds. The unmistakable tone of wooden drumsticks on a metal rim keeps time in the following “Oh, Emily,” a quirky cut that recalls the intelligent college pop of bands like Too Much Joy and They Might Be Giants (especially with piano-playing frontman Thornewill singing in a more nasal twang on this one). The somewhat theatrical-sounding “Adulthood” echoes Freddy Mercury’s higher register before segueing to the rollicking Billy Joel–inspired romp “Everybody Knows,” a slice of piano-pop perfection. Thornewill, Siegel, and Kristin harmonize like a Southern church choir in the aptly titled closer, “The Spiritual.”

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