Artist: Father John Misty
Album: I Love You, Honeybear
Label: Sub Pop
Release Date: February 10, 2015
By: Joey Kurbanov
Father John Misty understands the art of connecting spirituality with, well, almost everything. Raised with a “culturally oppressive” Baptist, Episcopal, and Pentecostal hybrid upbringing, he naturally has much to write about.
In his debut album, Fear Fun, the music was vast while hauntingly intimate, utilizing folk-like instrumentation. Swirling strings, steel guitars, and choirs recall a Wagnerian farm chant championing ideas of religion, sex, and war with absurd directness and satire.
On the second Father John album; I Love you, Honey Bear, our Father writes about his love, Emma Garr. It’s with his better half, he celebrates Satanic Christmas Eve on Chateau Marmont. The album’s depiction of love is far-fetched but humorous. Father John Misty recounts “Mascara, blood, ash and cum” as the pinnacle of his relationship. Unfortunately, I Love you, Honey Bear, proves musically insignificant, riding the sonic formula of its predecessor. The track “Bored in the U.S.A.,” proves to be the album’s highest point, with an airy and intricate melody hovering over a heightened sense of humor. I Love you, Honey Bear is melodically liberal but fails to captivate due to the lack of central “hooks” and the poor repetition of harmonic and rhythmic structure. Lyrically, the album is witty and cynical in all it’s glory, providing a refreshing perspective on Romance. Still worth a listen.