I love music- but getting me to attend a show at The Urban Lounge is damn near impossible. The thought of catching an STD by using the restroom and wrangling my way through some dirty hipster’s bike path is enough to keep me away from seeing some great bands. However, when I learned that Father John Misty was coming to play you better believe that I was front and center at that stage.
Here’s the thing – that man appeals to all people – regardless of sexual orientation. This review likely won’t be the most profound thing that you have ever read, but if you have seen him live, you know exactly the magic I am talking about.
Think about the last time you went to a concert and enjoyed an extremely moving performance AND laughed throughout the night…. Likely never happens. I knew I was in for a treat when during the first song he grabbed a phone from the audience that was recording and filmed himself singing into it.
He isn’t a typical “front man.” Sometimes you can’t tell if he is loving the attention or failing to notice it. Father John Misty (aka J Tillman) is talented… his lyrics profound. But at the same time, he has something that appeals to me that a lot of artists can’t capture, he mocks the idea of performing on stage. While he mocks the crowd and the very idea of what it means to be a performer, you can tell that he relishes in it at the same time. As an audience member – it is intriguing to watch – he is playful about being on stage.
His dance moves and charms are every nerd’s dream of making it big. He has jokes that make you giggle, but at the same time – the jokes have this over-arching theme about the way society works today. At one point during his set, he asked the crowd to be quiet and listen…. and then he sang without a band about the ills of today, he did this towards the end of the set when he had to know that everyone was several tequila shots deep and struggling to listen. But then the crowd silenced – and everyone did listen, clutching their drinks and feeling the harmonies and lyrics.
During the encore he covered a Beatles tune…. Flawlessly. Luckily at this point, I was four drinks in and forgot that the sound at Urban always sucks. The band even commented on it, stating, “We’ve never had more technical difficulties.” But standing there with fellow fans and screaming “Happiness is a Warm Gun” reminded me very much of the same feeling that I got from singing in a crowd of 80,000 at a Paul McCartney concert. The fact that this guy can charm a crowd at Urban makes it apparent to me that he will be around for a while. I swear most the time at an Urban concert most of the crowd is outside smoking or walking back and forth from the horrible bar across the street – and not engaged in the music. I’m more than willing to deal with hipsters and their dirty Pabst cans to see him sway his hips again.
So clearly I am a girl with a crush….but hey…. at least it is on a bearded gentleman.