The Black Cat in Washington DC played host to the sold out CD release party for Jukebox the Ghost.......What's that? ....... You didn't expect this show to sell out? Well, apparently no one did, including the bands. The large crowd slowed entry to a crawl, causing many people, including myself, to miss most of opening act, Pash. But there would still be no shortage of awesomeness this evening.
Bellman Barker took the stage, in all their unique glory. They powered through an energetic set that included much of their EP, Anise & Anisette. BB's power pop style and range impressed the crowd almost as much as Aaron's wicked handlebar mustache. All kidding aside, Bellman Barker are primed to become a really big deal in the mid-Atlantic and beyond. Their final song, showed how far these guys can go. Two Bees started with Thomas playing the clarinet, and then looping it through an FX box that built and built along with the xylophone and guitar into an amazing finish. Seriously, who can use a sampled clarinet sound well? Shades of Johny Greenwood on that one, and that's pretty good company.
But of course, Jukebox the Ghost was the main event tonight. The three piece from D.C. came out to quite an ovation, and couldn't disguise the awe on their faces. The crowd that showed up to welcome their new CD was both plentiful and excited. It seemed a little overwhelming for them at first, but it didn't take long before Jukebox was having a great time, and generally kicking butt.
What struck me quickly was how quircky Ben Thornewill is whilst playing keys. His facial expressions ranged from mad scientist to comedian. At times, it looked like he didn't know what notes his hands were going to play, but they were always the right ones. Also impressive is how well Ben and Tommy Siegel trade the role of frontman from song to song. They're each talented enough that they could split into two bands and each would still be amazing. Luckily they are in one band, aided by the sharp and steady drumming of Jesse Kristin. The obvious comparisons to Ben Folds will be thrown at Jukebox wherever they go, but don't let it fool you. Jukebox the Ghost have carved out their own style, and created a future that is quite promising.
Mp3: Bellman Barker - Charles Kil
Mp3: Bellman Barker - Two Bees ---- website ---- Buy
Mp3: Jukebox the Ghost - Under My Skin
Mp3: Jukebox the Ghost - Hold It In ---- website ---- Buy
The full length is not available online anywhere yet, so check back soon.
Aaron of Bellman Barker
Ben of Jukebox the Ghost
More photos available HERE