The fog clears
On his emotional fourth album, musical flâneur Father John Misty gives us glimpses of his real self
Whatever you think of him, Father John Misty, the alter-ego of 37-year-old Josh Tillman, is always excellent value. His absurd lyrics, stand-offish persona and inability to button his shirt have won him flocks of fans. Yet, his fourth LP, God’s Favourite Customer, showcases a more vulnerable side
— a departure from the satirical jibes of his previous album Pure Comedy.
The tongue-in-cheek Misty is still very much in evidence on single “Mr Tillman”. It’s a funny track — lacing his story of a less-than-ideal hotel stay with winding chord progressions and an absent-minded whistling interlude. However, the likes of love-sick anthem “Just Dumb Enough to Try” opens the doors to his sincere side — that is, until we reach a synthesised trumpet solo.
God’s Favourite Customer is as close to earnest as Tillman has ventured since his 2012 debut, Fear
Fun. While one would hesitate to call it a wholesome album, it’s nice to know there’s a hopeless romantic somewhere beneath all that facial hair. —
God’s Favourite Customer is out on 1 June (Bella Union)