Jukebox the Ghost @ The Murat
By Sarah Thompson and Jessica Yarvin
Once you get over the fact that Chris Carraba, the lead singer of Twin Forks, is also the lead singer of Dashboard
Confessional, you begin to catch the bug that has the four-piece band dancing and smiling and laughing together. Gone are the days of “Screaming Infidelities,” Carraba’s latest project combines the high-energy aspects of folk, pop, rock and classic Americana music to create a unique (there’s a mandolin) and exciting sound that’s not only fun to listen to, but also singing and dancing along with the palpable energy.
Watching Twin Forks perform, you can feel they have an ecstatic aura. They are having a a blast creating and sharing music on stage with some of their best friends, and that enthusiasm transfers right into the audiences energy.
After flying through a cohesive set of everything from pop-driven songs to slower ballads, Twin Forks whipped out an incredibly well done surprise folk cover of Band of Horses’ “General Specific” towards the end of their set. They had recently gotten done with a tour with Counting Crows before joining with Jukebox the Ghost for this tour and after their energetic and unforgettable performance, it’s more likely than not that we’ll be hearing more from the band soon.
After a short break, Jukebox the Ghost took the stage as a bunch of screaming girls (thoughts running through our heads “oh my god when did we get so old”), voiced their appreciation for the band and pianist and singer Ben Thorenwill’s dashing good looks. I had last seen the band four years ago when they were an opener and Sarah last saw them five years ago on a stage in the shade (as guitarist and singer Tommy Seigel later pointed out when we talked to him) at Lollapalooza. Of note, in their Lollapalooza performance, Ben Thorenwill was wearing a Reptar, from the TV show Rugrats, tank top. Despite not seeing Jukebox in a decent amount of time, they still that the same high-energy approach to music that made a stamp in our brain all those years ago.
Although this tour was in support of their most recent album, Jukebox the Ghost pulled tracks from all of their albums to form the set-list. Of the songs they played from Let Live and Let Ghosts, the most striking was “Static to the Heart” which brought a mid show intensity to their performance that built the track up into aggressive rock.
A great moment in Jukebox the Ghosts set was when, as Siegel tuned his guitar, Thornewill took a break to tell the audience a joke he had overheard on the subway in New York. The joke went as follows:
*A man walks in to a library and goes up to the librarian at the front desk*
Man: “I’d like a double cheese burger, a cherry coke, and a side of fries”
Librarian: “Sir, this is a library”
Man: “Oh! Sorry!” then in a whisper “I’d like a double cheese burger, a cherry coke, and a side of fries“
I couldn’t tell you if it was that the joke was just so darn funny or if Jukebox the Ghost had created such a welcoming, excited atmosphere that even a tiny joke could push the audience over the edge into euphoric laughter but that’s what happened. The audience, myself included, loved it and laughed hysterically.
Jesse Kristin, who typically resides firmly behind the drum set, took to the front of stage and killed the intro vocals to “Hollywood”, a song he co-wrote from their self-titled album, before returning to the drums.
The show never lost steam, and played songs from all of their albums, ending their encore with “Adulthood,” from their first album.
You can get a free track from Jukebox the Ghost and Twin Forks from the Twin Forks facebook page.
Photos by Jessica Yarvin and Sarah Thompson with Alex Smith