Bella Union / Release of the Week
Father John Misty marks a strong return with the release of his third album Pure Comedy. After emerging from the sea of singer-songwriters with 2015’s I Love You, Honeybear it seems Josh Tillman is taking his time on the mic to detail his thoughts and opinions across a vast canvas; evenly distributing it to create a masterpiece that allows it’s insecurities to be heard within an even brighter spotlight.
With titles such as “Things It Would Be Helpful To Know Before the Revolution”, “Ballad of the Dying Man” and “So I’m Growing Old on Magic Mountain” it appears Pure Comedy has a sense of humour that would fit perfectly with the pessimists of the world. Those who dabble in self-loathing, those who might even hate themselves just a little bit more every day, those who’s simple quota to have a good day is to not shit themselves the second they wake up. While there’s no hint of shit present, Father John Misty does routinely pair up his higher position in music along with a newly discovered sense of paranoia, which allows the album to keep its feet firmly planted on the ground against the other two records.
Instrumentally Pure Comedy provides the perfect sounds for Tillman to spill his words to, often swooning and soaring at the peaks and wilting for the low points too. Its main driving force is the acoustic guitar, frequently delivering warm, emotive chords that provide just enough personality to not vanish completely in the background. It’s also backed up with cold piano chords throughout, as well as occasional electronic glitches which break up the likes of “The Memo”. Even at it’s wordiest, Pure Comedy succeeds wonderfully at creating a sonic roller-coaster that helps Father John Misty’s ambition reach for the stars with its wondrous creativity.
It’s a tremendous album from Father John Misty. Pure Comedy is an album stacked with ambitious instrumentals, exquisite song writing and even with its bloated timeframe flows smoother than you could imagine a record like this could.