Father John Misty Finds Catharsis at Hollywood Forever: Concert Review


Father John Misty’s second night at Hollywood Forever Cemetery, he sang “Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings” early in the show, as he does almost every night on the current tour, before admitting, in the The night before, he blew out a good portion of the lyrics.Unable to explain this unusual lapse, which he attributes to a specific song choice, it could be so Thinking of this, he was a little puzzled.

If he were a more whining person, maybe he would blame the local spirit for flocking to him for daring to be so meta that it ended up being a place of entertainment in the Holy Land. – Location, he named it after a song. (“We should put this dead man to sleep,” really?—quote the tune.) But Father John isn’t that kind of mystic, as audiences will soon be reminded of his own epic anti-comedy Pure comedy”. – Divine Comedy, magical thinking is not very useful.

Nonetheless, the pairing of artist and environment is synergistic, if not spiritualist. “It wasn’t until last night, when I played in the cemetery for the first time, that I realized that my catalog had a pretty serious body count,” he said. “We’re, like, five, and quite a few dead.” That’s after he opened a collection of short-story-filled songs with “Q4,” a recent song about an ambitious The bouncy novelist drew inspiration from her late sister’s life story, followed by a reference to burying the dead grandpa in “Hollywood’s Forever Graveyard Sings,” further succeeded by “Chloe,” with the title’s effervescent starlet Jumped off the balcony.

Despite Misty’s subsequent promise that “no one’s going to die on the next song, I think you’ll love it anyway”, there’s more deadly things to do. On a standout song “Goodbye Mr. Blue” from his recent album “Chloë and the Next 20th Century,” all that dies is a cat (sorry “only” cat fans), reflecting the slow death of its A relationship between two owners of a sense of failure. That was by far the most poignant number of the night, even if Misty did make a “one down, eight go” joke among the other thought-provoking lyrics.

But the most reckless emotional choice here, possibly in Misty’s entire catalog, is a death-prevention number. “I want to dedicate the next one to all those who died,” he said. “It’s called ‘Please don’t die.’” The introduction may be distorted, but the way he conveys this plea from a distance to a loved one who has bottomed out in the material depths is nothing more than earnest or passionate abuse or depression. The message is: When the gates are closed, you need to be here, not Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Johnny Ramone, or anyone else who stays behind.

Donna Show? Do not. If you think so, you don’t know Misty — or you probably know, because there’s no denying that the material he’s amassed on his five albums over the past decade can be a bit ruthless. In fact, it can actually be quite deep into the abyss, think about it, at its core. But he tends to climax with something “celebrating life” (in morgue parlance). This could come in the form of “Holy Shit,” Misty performed acoustically on Friday as his first encore song, which lists all the things that can and does go wrong in a fallen world, then lovingly added Said, “But I failed to see what this has to do with you and me.” It comes from the spirit of love in the ruins of an uplifting all-band song that almost always appears on the show “I Love You, Darling.” Or the climax of “true love” that sometimes occurs.

On his album “Chloë…” released earlier this year, Misty seems to be developing a writing style that is in many ways different from what he’s done in the past. The sweeping statements about human stupidity and futility are mostly gone (except for the recorded closing numbers); so are the seemingly personal or confessional songs. He’s become more of a short story writer, and while Dead Cat’s songs are self-explanatory — he jokes that he’s “in pursuit of universality” — others are a little harder to understand at first or even listen to a second time. So for those concerned, it was helpful when Misty introduced the new “Friend’s Date” about “a guy who gets out of jail and goes to see his daughter and makes some orders to her. Heartbreaking bad advice for people”. Well, of course it is…and knowing that a little extra business actually helps prove Misty is more of an empath than you might think, except that he’s increasingly leaning towards fiction.

This new album has some of the best orchestral arrangements by Drew Erickson that have become pop records over the years and have been taken to the tour with desperation , thanks to Misty taking the string part and the horn part with him on the road. He’s played strings in the past, but they’ve never been more important in most new material—especially a song like “Chloë,” which openly dates back to the 1940s, no matter what era it might have happened in. Misty’s heart. (He admitted to feeling trapped during the pandemic, and asked the crowd if anyone else had “hot jazz” to fill the void in quarantine.)

In fact, it’s hard to remember that any pop artist has ever used a better small orchestral arrangement on stage, be it those “Chloe” with sarcastic warmth or to chill some of Misty’s quiet spines , icy figures. One of them, “Palace,” is still as beautiful as pop, or beautifully ominous — and it’s better to hear a creepy refrain with “I’m on top of my head” than in a cemetery place?

Hollywood Forever Father John Misty
Chris Wellman/Variety

The show may be most notable for its unconventional use of orchestral music, but Misty isn’t entirely against giving viewers some of the songs that have the hallmarks of a more standard-release rock show. One of his more shocking numbers, “Date Night,” has played on Hollywood Forever’s first night, but not the second. (Misty confuses the set list; between two nights at the venue, 14 songs are played on one night or the other, but not simultaneously, rewarding repeat participants, some of whom apparently have.)

The trumpet is highlighted in “When You’re Smiling and Astride Me,” which presents Misty as a person with a soul. “True Love,” a seven-year-old song he rarely plays, aired Friday, showing what he looks like as an EDM artist, though it’s a direction he seems less likely to follow now than ever, because He finds that since the songs he’s recording now sound closer to Benny Goodman than to Benny Blanco. On the other side of the scale, he keeps some extra guitar distractions going on in his encore version of “I’m Writing a Novel” (“We have time,” he encourages, rather than the night before the curfew violation as he did ), so much so that it could be mistaken for an exciting Grateful Dead cover.

Misty put “True Baby” on the schedule Thursday, but time was running out; he pulled out early Friday to make sure he got it. The off-album track was an inevitable crowd favorite, as it was an anomaly in his catalog as a totally feel-good single. “I don’t remember writing the song,” he admits to the roar of the band and orchestra, who bought the tune to land, apparently showing that something so simple can only be achieved with automatic writing or a blackout. But especially It was in this case that perhaps he would not deny that the crowd had a good physical resurrection.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.