One wouldn’t expect the opener of a folk rock/pop singer to be loud as hell and filled with guitar riffs that shook the venue, but that’s just what Mikal Cronin brought to the stage of the LC Pavilion in Columbus, OH Wednesday night.
Before attending the concert, I did a bit of research on the opener and decided to listen to his stuff. I immediately thought it would be a perfect match. Why? Cronin’s music, at least to me, was smooth enough to flow along with the folk theme of Father John Misty’s music.
The minute Cronin and Co. stepped on stage the loud guitar riffs, distortion, and echoing drums filled the venue, making it almost impossible to hear vocals. All I was left with was ringing ears and a confused sense of what the hell just happened.
At times, the band’s sound seemed to blend together and a lot of the songs sounded the same. Some tracks stood out among others with intriguing intros, but those intros were soon deemed useless when they became covered by oh so much distortion.
Cronin’s vocals also seemed a bit out of place with the music the band was playing. It was almost a bit too quiet (maybe it was just the mics) and just felt out of place overall. I think if the band played at a smaller, more intimate venue they would’ve had a bit more success.
After an electric, but not too impressive opening act, I was ready for some Father John Misty.
The stage was adorned with an interesting setup. An ironic ‘No Photography’ neon sign lit the background of the stage as the satirical Josh Tillman blessed the audience with his presence.
The singer opened up perfectly with “I Love You, Honeybear”. The passion he exhibited on stage was fueled by quirky dance moves, sarcastic gestures which matched the lyrics (like flicking the audience off when he crooned “Fuck the world/Damn straight malaise”) and spectacular vocals which joined every audience member in the two hours we were there.
As the night ensued, FJM played hits off of his debut ‘Fear Fun’ and the fantastic ‘I Love You, Honeybear’. From “Nancy From Now On” to “I’m Writing A Novel” he made sure to appeal to old and new fans alike.
Before continuing on and playing the sensual “When You’re Smiling And Astride Me”, he made sure to address the audience. “Are there any young, middle-aged white couples out there?”. I laughed so much. The great thing about this show and Father John Misty’s attitude on stage is the fact that it can be considered a comedy as well as a satirical commentary. I love that about his music.
The song “Holy Shit” literally makes you say holy shit at the end of it because of everything he croons starts coming together in such an elegant format that it leaves you in awe. At one point in the middle of singing a song, FJM motioned to a member in the audience to give him her phone. He then proceeded to record himself singing into the camera which immediately followed him pocketing the phone (don’t worry he gave it back).
The entirety of FJM’s performance relied on his charisma and demeanor, Misty made sure to entertain and provide the audience with an unforgettable night filled with twists, turns, laughs, and smiles. One of the last songs performed was “An Ideal Husband”, a track that has so much raw power and energy I’m pretty sure the entire pit was screaming the lyrics alongside Misty.
Father John Misty gave the LC Pavilion a wonderful performance and closed the night off with the beautifully orchestrated “I Went To The Store One Day”, an intimate and COMPLETELY acoustic performance that melted the heart of almost every single body in the audience. It was definitely a night to remember.
If you get the opportunity to see him live, don’t even hesitate when buying tickets.
Prepare yourself to be completely entertained and wowed by the one and only Father John Misty.
You can stream FJM and Mikal Cronin below.