Yes, this album and genre of music is a little bit (quite a lot) out of my comfort zone to write a review for. However, Josh Tillman, or as you may know him as Father John Misty. His second album, ‘I Love You, Honeybear‘, a dedication to his wife, is a deeply saddening orchestration of music inspired by Country, Funk, Jazz, Rock and Electronic.
Tillman describes the album as a ‘concept album’ focusing around him. This includes personal expression of love, cheating, drug abuse, nihilism and melancholy.
The opening track on the album, “I Love You, Honeybear” is a perfect introduction to the album. The instrumental is primarily the kick of a drum, depressing background humming vocals and a jazzy keyboard. Misty describes the love he has for his wife while living in a world that is full of destruction and lustful actions.
“True Affection”, the third track, is supported by psychedelic melodies that could’ve easily been produced by Electronic producer Kaytranada. Misty also sounds blissful on the chorus as his vocals perfectly fit into melody and sound of the song.
A real standout on the album however is the body-swaying “When You’re Smiling and Astride Me“. A cool drum pattern and ad-libs throughout provide this beautiful body-swaying melody. The violin and other string arrangements on the track also standout. Misty’s vocals and guitar solo around halfway through is also a nice little present as well.
Lastly, “Bored in the USA” and “I Went to the Store one Day” are the stellar tracks on the album. “Bored in the USA” sees Misty taking the piss out of ‘Murica and how its failing its citizens. He discusses the epidemic of prescription drug abuse, finding passion for a ‘regular life’ and that the American school system is failing its youth.
Overall, it’s one of my favourite non-Hip-Hop albums. It’s mature, angry, disassociated but most of all, well put together. The only other thing i have to say is; Misty needs to work with Flying Lotus and BadBadNotGood as they all compliment one another’s musical style.