The very first line of Father John Misty’s new album God’s Favorite Customer captures his satirical yet soulful song-making skills. “Sun is rising” he croons in a somber, dull mood as the album opens with Hangout At The Gallows, which provides fans with enough melodic and rhythmic excitement to take Mr. Tillman a bit more seriously, perhaps than he takes himself.
Track two, Mr. Tillman, combines both his witty and singalong styles together as the song grooves to a standard rock beat. The silly lyrics match the tone of the vocal melody, which is another clever songwriting skill that Father John Misty lures his listeners in with. The opening, slow-playing piano chords of the third song Just Dumb Enough To Try may remind some fans of their disappointment in his last album Pure Comedy, but after letting the song grow on you, you’ll realize that the slow piano songs on God’s Favorite Customer hold more weight than they do on previous records.
Father John Misty introduces his hypnotizing and energetic falsetto power during the chorus of Date Night. Vocal range is definitely one of Josh’s strengths as a singer/songwriter and although at times you may want to laugh at his ridiculousness, his vocal prowess must not go unnoticed or unappreciated. The fifth song, Please Don’t Die, falls on the borderline between slow song and medium groove as the vocal melody lulls fans into a state of supreme relaxation.
It’s the eccentric, oddball poetic phrases in Father John Misty’s music that make him such a relevant, attractive force in the indie-rock industry today. He opens up track The Palace with the absurd and peculiar line “It’s only been three weeks and a bag of speed,” which is as enticing as the grand piano chord progression that drives the acoustic, intimate attitude of the song.
The most immediate fan favorite and memorable song on the album is Disappointing Diamonds Are The Rarest Of Them All, whose run on title is gracefully welcomed into the repertoire of brilliant run-along titled songs that continue to excite and entertain Tillman’s massive fan base. The upbeat momentum on this song makes it stand out amongst the rest of the tracks. Song eight, the title track of the album, is another borderline slow dance, medium energized song. The memorable chorus makes this song another highlight of the record.
The Songwriter, a delicate ballad, continues to mix up the many styles of Father John Misty’s music. Even though it’s the slowest song on the album, it doesn’t fail to grasp the attention of the listener because of Tillman’s tremendous soul. The final track, We’re Only People, begins as a mellow, piano-driven song before the intensity and energy builds and bursts with crisp harmonies and rocking instrumentals. After his 2017 release, Father John Misty has regained a lot of excitement with these ten indie-rock gems.
Scott J. Herman