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[Photos] Father John Misty and Magic Stick – Headliners, Louisville – 1.9.13

Photo credit Lana Lea

My first show of 2013 was a mighty unusual one for me, since the project that originally launched J. Tillman into the spotlight, Fleet Foxes, was always a real bummer to my ears (a minority opinion, I know). Way, way too fair trade organic coffeeshop core for my taste. Yet Tillman’s Father John Misty is different – a more diverse, edgy, and often lush take on rustic electric folk standards, with a badass, drug-takin’, God-witness’ persona. And live, he’s all showman – mic stand swinging, boogie fits that would give Thom Yorke the vapors, and truth be told, a rather charming inter song banter. I get it, ladies. I could go gay for him. The highlight undoubtedly (at least for me) was the harsh noise breakdown during “Holywood Forever Cemetery Sings,” with a destructive display that was surprisingly punk as fuck. Tillman’s a hell of a performer, and his band’s take on the music is robust and diverse. Tim Cohen of The Fresh and Only’s other project, Magic Stick, opened up the evening with a sparsely arranged, pensive exploration of weirdo power pop.