Reviewed by Peter John Willoughby
Bon Voyage started out as a side project of Starflyer 59 and Havalina. It features the vocal talents of Julie Martin and the songwriting and production skills of her husband, Jason. Although Jason's brother, Ronnie, does not feature on the recording you can still hear some of the Joy Electric influences. The new wave, synth-laden pop takes me back to the days of Joy Division and The Smiths where difficult subject matters are disguised by the upbeat nature of the music. In "Monster", Julie's sweet vocals sing "I wish I was a monster, I would hide under the stairs/I wish I was a nightmare, I'd give you a scare/I could be a bad dream, make you scream, give you a thrill/Shake up your monotony, so you could feel/Something like surprise, if I was a monster." Unfortunately, there are no lyrics printed in the booklet, so it is difficult to tell what the words are in some of the other songs. However, the main themes seem to be about how people can fail you and that material possessions cannot fill an emotional need. "The Good Life" is the only song to use proper drums, rather than electro-beats. Also Julie sounds far too happy whilst singing "Girlfriend In A Coma" (by The Smiths) as her voice doesn't have that ironic/sarcastic edge that was a feature of Morrissey's. "Bad Dream" is a different version of "Monster", followed by a gentle instrumental. They bow out with "Wake Up, Make Up" which is their most positive and poppy song. At 32 minutes long, it's quite easy to listen to 'Lies' all in one go. Despite the dark lyrics, "Monster" is still my favourite song as you can't quite believe that someone as pure-sounding as Julie could do anyone harm.
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