‘Off-Key in Hamburg’ by Father John Misty

This is an easy sell: Father John Misty releases live album to raise funds for the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund. Amazing music, for an amazing cause.

That’s the good news. The even better news is that flanked by the incredible Neue Philharmonie Frankfurt orchestra, Misty’s unique brand of 70’s singer-songwriter inspired, cynical indie-rock is bolstered by an extra layer of pomp.

Father John Misty – Leaving LA @ Elbphilarmonie, Hamburg, 08.08 ...

The extra oomph on ‘Hollywood Forever Cemetery Sings’ carries it to new heights of drive and determination, while ‘Total Entertainment Forever’s closing lyrics now carry a deeper, almost threatening meaning during the chaos and confusion of the COVID-19 epidemic…

When the historians find us we’ll be in our homes,
Plugged into our hubs,
Skin and bones,
A frozen smile on every face,
As the stories replay,
This must have been a wonderful place

‘Total Entertainment Forever’ by Father John Misty

It’s also worth noting that the added orchestration actually rescues some of the more ponderous and pretentious songs from the album Pure Comedy. For instance the beautiful string and horn arrangement on ‘Things It Would Have Been Helpful To Know Before The Revolution’ make it a lot more exciting to listen to.

My absolute favourite Misty song, ‘Holy Shit’ is especially poignant given our current… situation. A song about coming together no matter the chaos that goes on outside our homes. A song about holding each other tightly at the end of the world…

This documentary’s lost on me,
Satirical news, free energy,
Mobile lifestyle, loveless sex,
Independence, happiness,

Oh, and no one ever knows the real you, and life is brief,
So I’ve heard, but what’s that gotta do with this atom bomb in me?

‘Holy Shit’ by Father John Misty

The key change at the height of the song is now backed by the most majestic orchestral accompaniment you could ask for, with the vocal performance reflecting the desperation and the f***-it-all attitude that matches the tone perfectly.

It’s a charity release, so of course you should buy it if you have the means, but it also serves as a great entry-point to Father John Misty’s back catalogue. All the “hits” are here, with added flair, from ‘Nancy From Now On’ to ‘Disappointing Diamonds Are The Rarest Of Them All’, this is a great reminder of how good a songwriter Misty is.

You can purchase this live album from Bandcamp for $10 or more with all proceeds going to the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund. Take a listen below if you want a taste! You can find Father John Misty at his official website and buy all the merch from the official store. How official!

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