Jukebox the Ghost
Released on February 9, 2021
Three-piece outfit Jukebox the Ghost filmed our latest Buzzsession across New York, Virginia and Kentucky as they've hunkered down in their respective homes. They offer a fresh take on their 2010 tune "Empire," a tune full of life and energy, by stripping it down to its barest form. However, while this acoustic rendition isn't the high voltage power pop we know and love from the trio, not an ounce of energy is lost. With drummer Jesse Kristin's impromptu rotary-phone-and-colander-centric percussion setup and seamless harmonies between lead vocalist/keyboardist Ben Thornewill and guitarist Tommy Seigel, you almost forget how far apart they actually are. Whilst singing of walls coming down, they make you feel as though the vulnerability might not be the worst thing in the world, and the only thing to fear is the threat of joy.
Thornewill then pays homage to the Harry Nilsson version of Randy Newman's "I'll Be Home," introducing us to the childhood piano on which he first learned to play. These simple lyrics are a testament to Newman's timeless songwriting, as the present circumstances set the perfect stage for his words. We'll all continue to be home in a literal sense, given that we're all still largely quarantining, but the true heart of the song lies in the way it becomes a shoulder to lean on. "When you're feeling down...Remember, baby, you can always count on me," is just the reassurance we need in this harsh, especially lonely winter. Thornehill's lovely cover, brimming with warmth, is one to which we can all return for a little extra comfort.