Swift-Ception: Father John Misty’s Take on Taylor
Bored of the Ryan Adams/Taylor Swift hype? Have a listen to FATHER JOHN MISTY’s versions of ‘Blank Space’ and ‘Welcome To New York’ instead.
Released right after he heard Ryan Adams’ Taylor Swift cover album, these two songs are everything that the Adams’ versions are not – memorable, hilarious, unique and importantly, not-so-stalkerish.
Father John Misty’s version of ‘Blank Space’ centres around the tongue in cheek yankee-doodle drawl with which he annunciates “oh you know I love the players” and is just begging for a ‘yee-haw’ at the end. The meta-musical Velvet Underground-style version of Ryan Adams’ cover of Taylor Swift’s recent pop smash takes the late Lou Reed’s guitar riffs from ‘I’m Waiting For My Man’ and shoe horns Taylor’s lyrics in place – that sounds like a lot to take in, and it is, but the effect is fantastic fun.
His rock n’ roll take on ‘Waiting For New York’ is made of stuff to strut to, and strut you shall. Ryan Adams doesn’t pack in half as much of a rambunctious guitar solo in his whole cover album as Father John does in 5.31 mins. The cover of a cover by Fleet Foxes’ former drummer was recorded rapid fast in under an hour during some down time on his current US tour, but still manages to channel all of Lou Reed’s sultry sexy insouciance. Coming straight off the back of Adams’ homage, the songs are great for countering the noticeable absence of Swift songs on Spotify.
Joshua Tillman, aka Father John Misty, has since taken the tracks down from his Soundcloud, saying that Lou Reed appeared to him in a dream saying that ‘I am not your plaything’. You might think that the only plaything in all of this is Taylor, but you’d be making misassumptions – she encouraged Father John to put the tracks back up, in a display of what he calls her ‘post-modern power’.
I think what the world really needs, rather than a washed out Ryan Adams cover of Taylor Swift, is a Father John Misty take on Lou Reed.
Words by Katie Rowley