With a 13-piece band in tow at The Anthem, Father John Misty toned down the sarcasm, but his dedication to giving a passionate performance has never been stronger.
Barely a year after releasing his apocalyptic magnum opus Pure Comedy, Father John Misty (aka Josh Tillman) is back with another sonic journey into depravity. God's Favorite Customer finds the embattled monarch of the "poem zone" taking a break from battling the evils of modern times to engaging in bloody combat with his greatest enemy and nemesis: himself.
Special guests Lindsay Hogan (Talking LIke A Jerk) and Seán Barna join Kevin and Drew as we follow this modern day lizard king down the rabbit hole of his deepest insecurities and regrets to find out what's on the other side for one of this generation's most relentlessly talented (and relentlessly misunderstood) voices.
After the impossible highs that were reached in music in 2016, the question of how that could be topped would always weigh heavy on 2017, but nobody could have really predicted the year that was. Our nation, our home, shifted at long last towards the deep-seeded hatred, misogyny, and generalized loathing that had always hid just underneath the surface of our communities, our entertainment, our ART. Turns out that for many, the American way was a freeway to self-destruction, and in 2017 all lanes were suddenly open.
It's likely that we'll look back at 2017 as the year almost everything fell apart, downerism ruled the land, and we came very close to being broken as a people.
But we didn't break. We made it. And on this final installment of ChunkyGlasses: The Podcast for 2017, we're discussing the music that lifted us up, dropped us down, and sometimes even showed us the way, but never, ever let us down.
Thanks for tuning in all year. We'll see you soon. Until then be good to your ears, but be better to your people...
Over the course of three albums now, Josh Tillman has made quite the reputation for himself as provocateur extraordinaire Father John Misty. On Pure Comedy, Tillman/Misty is letting it all hang out in a gaudy, profane, philosophically perverse masterpiece that transcends the swarmy persona that people love to hate by speaking up about nothing less than what it is to be human in the modern age.
Plus! Cory Branan is back with a new LP (Adios) and we've got the single "Imogene" to help you get re-acquainted with this talented singer/songwriter.
On Saturday night, Father John Misty aka Josh Tillman, returned to the 9:30 Club to perform songs from his sophomore album, I Love You, Honeybear. Through an epic two hour long, 20 song set, Misty and his six-piece band played through most of the tracks from both of his albums to the sold-out club, along with a cover of Leonard Cohen’s “I’m Your Man” (complete with keytar) during the encore. And even though his faux-disdain for any and all attention was on full display under a neon 'No Photography' sign that begged to be Instagrammed, the crowd couldn't get enough.
On our latest podcast, we dig deep into the man, the myth, the legend that is Father John Misty as the gang breaks down his latest effort, I Love You, Honeybear. Is it the masterpiece that everyone expected or just another day in the Josh Tillman’s long strange trip? PLUS!!! New York City contemplates making subsidized housing available to “creatives”, Taylor Swift trademarks everything, Jack White’s guacamole makes the news, and much, much more. Time to shimmy into your sexypants and get comfortable for Episode 101 of ChunkyGlasses: The Podcast!
The Newport Folk Festival, one of the oldest (if not THE oldest) and most successful festivals in the US turned 54 this year. With that much legacy, this festival has a lot to live up to. And with the very definition of “folk” changing, traditionalists are still ready to shake their heads with disapproval to any deviation to the established ways. But it’s not just the genre that’s changing: everything is changing. Festivals have become a major draw for both audiences and bands as a way to gain broad exposure to well-established and up-and-coming bands alike, so it’s with no surprise that Newport is changing as well.
Father John Misty opened his set on Saturday witah a sarcastic rant saying that he’d been invited because he was white, had a beard and played a few acoustic guitars on his record, yet before his performance was even halfway over you could wander to another stage to catch the decidedly un-folky Trombone Shorty. The following day, soul crooner Michael Kiwanuka, delivered a thrilling set, Cold Specks astounded the crowd with herself described “doom soul, and Tuareg guitarist/singer/songwriter Bombino gained a whole new legion of fans with his high-energy guitar rock. All of which is to say, that on the grounds of Fort Adams the term “folk” can indeed mean many different things.
Day two of this year's Newport Folk Fesival left behind the weather miseries of the day before. It dawned clear, bright and warm and made the wet and cold endurance test of the previous day feel like another lifetime.
Kicking the day off at the Harbor tent stage, Sarah Jarosz’s soft voice coaxed early visitors and long time devotees alike to hush first and listen second. She alternated between banjo, acoustic guitar and octave mandolin and was accompanied by a cellist and a violinist. Her selections alternated from her own creations, including cuts from the new album, to covers of artists like Tim O’Brien and Joanna Newsome. She ended her set with a fabulous cover of Tom Waits’ “Come Up to the House,” asking everyone to join in.
Shovels & Rope, a husband/wife team, Michael Trent and Cary Ann Hearst from South Carolina, turned the volume up in the middle of the day. Cary Ann wore a wonderful gingham blue dress, but said she hadn’t counted on the wind. “If it blows up, don’t take pictures.” she asked the audience, “It’s not that kind of show!” The couple frequently traded instruments and rapid-fire lyrics to create a raucous sound that got the crowd in the Quad tent to jump up and dance. “Hail Hail” rang out with distortion and bass, a perfect foot-stomper for the crowd.
SOUNDS LIKE: Father John Misty, Neon Indian, Burial, Four Tet, Explosions in the Sky, and Prefuse 73 got together decided to throw a minimalist party to delight and confuse their fans
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE: Because you like good music that balances experimental and pop, organic and electronic, and keeps you on your toes
If you think about the sheer quantity of music that was released in 2012, the thought of compiling anything into some sort of consensus seems a fool’s errand. Yet, this year, like every year, our prehistoric brain takes over and we are once again force to assign, rearrange, tabulate and label until we are able to put together one of man’s greatest contributions to the universe: The list.
This year, eleven voters ended up contributing over seventy different albums to a pool that ultimately had to be whittled down to just ten. Every single staffer here has one thing in common - THEY FUCKING LOVE MUSIC – and I think this list represents not only the diversity of the ChunkyGlasses team, but why what we do is so much damn fun.
But the time for writing is done this year. Now we hash it out, mano y mano, for your listening pleasure. For the faint of heart, we’ve broken this booze soaked supersized podcast into ten bite size nuggets to consume at will should you choose. Either way, strap in, grab a cold one (or ten) and get ready to find out what happens when a bunch of music nerds with no filters lock themselves in a basement and hit record.
The Official ChunkyGlasses Top 10 Albums of 2012!!
Episode 18: Best Of 2012
Alt J - An Awesome Wave
"It’s nearly impossible to describe the album, which won this year’s Mercury award in Britain, without referencing that Alt-J has clearly found the soul and innovation Radiohead abandoned over the past five years. Joe Newman’s reedy voice weaves the best threads of world influence into ridiculously layered electronics, and the entire album runs like a drug-addled trip around the globe. The band’s name is written Alt-J because that’s the keyboard shortcut on a Mac to make the Delta symbol (?) – if this album weren’t spectacular, the whole thing would smack of a project by a bunch of art school jackholes, but fortunately for them it is spectacular." - Carrie
#10: Alt-J - An Awesome Wave
Dinosaur Jr. - Bet On Sky
"...I Bet On Sky doesn’t break much new ground, nor would Dino Jr.’s fans want it to. The leadoff single “Watch the Corners” starts with a crunchy one-chord intro before finding its way to the melodic noise that Mascis excels at. At 46, Mascis’ voice has never sounded better, inasmuch as a voice that doesn’t actually sing as much as mumble with style can sound better. He manages to convey some emotion on a slower tune, “Stick A Toe In,” which hearkens back to another Dino Jr. song, “I Don’t Wanna Go There,” with Mascis asking in both songs if he’s doomed to “walk alone.” “Pierce the Morning Rain” may cover the most ground in terms of illustrating all Dino Jr. does well; the opening riff throws a nod to Nirvana’s “Scentless Apprentice” before seguing into the kind of jaunty rock found on songs like “The Wagon,” then right back to the Sabbath power chords. It’s a garden of delights." - Justin
#9: Dinosaur Jr - I Bet On Sky
Frank Ocean - Channel Orange
"It’s a concept album. It’s a confession. It’s a snapshot of LA life unlike anything we’ve seen in years. Landing somewhere between Steely Dan and Stevie Wonder, Frank Ocean has made the album of his career and lucky for all of us, he’s just getting started. channel Orange is topping best of lists everywhere you look and it’s with good reason: It’s simply that good."
#8: Frank Ocean - channel Orange
Hospitality - Hospitality
Standout Tracks: “Friends” “Betty Wang”
By channeling everything that was right about the new-wave/punk scene hanging around CBGB’s in the late 70’s and putting a borderline twee pop sheen on it, Hospitality turned out one of the most listenable albums of 2012. More importantly though, it was also one of the most smartly satisfying records in recent memory. By simply having not only great taste in music, but the ability to execute on it with great songwriting, Amber Papini and crew set the bar just a little higher for all the aspiring indie-popsters out there this year.
Oddisee - People Hear What People Say
Standout Tracks: “Let It Go” “Anothers Grind”
Hip hop these days tends to either aim to either invigorate social awareness or lean towards a celebration of the more bacchanalian pursuits in life, but seldom does it more successfully meld the two more sweetly than on People Hear What People Say. Oddisee, originally a DC native, laid down twelve tracks of old school rhymes mashed against late 60’s universal soul and the result was an album that transcended the genre as much as it celebrated it. A wild ride that veers from West Coast to East Coast, KRS-One to Posdunus and back , People doesn’t just revel in the history of hip hop, it exalts the history of popular music PERIOD, and isn’t just a record that you shouldn’t miss, if you have ears, you practically can’t.
Hundred Visions – Permanent Basement
Good morning class, my name is Dr. Jim Sullivan and I’ll be your instructor for this semester’s class; Introduction on How to Rock Face 101. Here is your first assignment. I want you to go home, put on Hundred Visions Permanent Basement and loosen up your rock maneuvers along with some serious rock face. Although, there is one condition, you cannot, and I repeat, do not, at any point in this exercise rock face to this album into or near a mirror or any other reflective surfaces. I’ll see you all tomorrow for our discussion.
Welcome back class. Well, based upon the look on all of your melted faces, you probably think that I’m disappointed to see that you all have failed to follow the instructions. Billy, what was the last instruction I gave? Uhhhmmm, don’t look into a mirror or reflective surface while rocking face to Hundred Visions? Correct Billy, and based on your experience, why would I give you that instruction? Uhhhmmm, because even the reflection alone of how hard this album makes us rock face would cause us to melt our own faces off? Correct Billy, but sometimes the best education is experiencing the true power of rocking face first hand. You can thank Hundred Visions for that one. Good job class, now let me tell you about an album I like to call U.F.O.
Damien Jurado - Maraqopa
Similar to Jim Sullivan’s 1969 masterpiece U.F.O., Maraqopa is a lush, multi-layered and mysterious sounding folk album that may not get the credit it deserves in its day and age. This album is also one of the few examples of how to tastefully use strings and choirs in modern music. But, like a fine wine, this one will definitely age well and stand the test of time so that it can be lauded when the Space Jesus returns (listen to podcast 17, time stamp 52 minutes for further explanation on that front.) I just hope Damien doesn’t mimic Sullivan and decide to walk into the desert and get summoned back to another planet where the general public appreciates his music in the time when it is actually happening. So, as Carrie would say, sometimes you have to ask yourself What Would Alien Jesus Do? Well, apparently he would listen to Damien Jurado.
Hundred Visions – Permanent Basement
Standout Tracks: “Where Do I Sign?” / “Last Cab from Tunis” / “Regina, Hold the Line”
This Austin band may have screeched into my Top Ten based on their insanely entertaining live performance last April, but as long as I get the answer right I shouldn’t have to show my work. They can veer from genre to genre and get it all right, and as they say to Regina while she’s holding the line – “resistance is futile.” Buy this album for everyone on your Christmas list, and they will all love you and bake shit for you as a thank you.
Father John Misty - Fear Fun
Standout Tracks: “Nancy From Now On” / “Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings” / “Every Man Needs a Companion”
Whatshisface Tillman (he spends a lot of time talking about how much he dislikes his first name) may be the loveliest man born in the past 35 years and his voice can get you pregnant through your headphones, so ladies, you’ll want to be careful when listening to this album.
What's a word economist? F@#@ if I know, but Paul is a pretty damn good one. And while we may not agree (Often? Ever?) on what is good in new music these days, ChunkyGlasses just wouldn't be the same without his "dark cloud" of curmodgeonly goodness.
Oh, and that picture above is both recent and accurate. Resistance is futile.
It’s really challenging not to write a review of Father John Misty’s (ex-drummer of the Fleet-Foxes) debut album Fear Fun as if it was a Dennis Wilson solo record. References to the “Canyon” and “Malibu” certainly evoke his life story. That’s not to say the songs aren’t great. But if he wore his inspirations any more on his sleeves, he would have cufflinks with Charles Manson’s grin on them.
This is a moving-to-Los Angeles record. Not the Los Angeles of Guns N’ Roses Appetite for Destruction, of the Sunset Strip and heroin, lots of jack, Cantor’s in the small hours of the morning, then have a stroke after one too many speedballs. Instead, it’s the soft, hazy Los Angeles of canyons, beaches, and smog-painted sunsets, along with copious amounts of pot, and not a small amount of sadness.
J. Tillman has a voice that is warm, assured while still vulnerable. He surrounds that voice with a fairly spare and quiet accompaniment. While there are pianos, acoustic guitars and percussion, none of them assert themselves very much. Despite all the instrumentation he might as well as be singing a cappella somewhere off Topanga Canyon.